MO-G-BRF-06: Radiotherapy and Prompt Oxygen Dynamics




Adaptive radiotherapy requires a knowledge of the changing local tumor oxygen concentrations for times on the order of the treatment time, a time scale far shorter than cell death and proliferation. This knowledge will be needed to guide hypofractionated radiotherapy.


A diffuse optical probe system was developed to spatially average over the whole interior of athymic Sprague Dawley nude mouse xenografts of human head and neck cancers. The blood volume and hemoglobin saturation was measured in real time. The quantities were measured with spectral fitting before and after 10 Gy of radiation is applied. An MRI BOLD scan is acquired before and after 10 Gy that measures regional changes in R2* which is inversely proportional to oxygen availability. Simulations were performed to fit the blood oxygen dynamics and infer changes in hypoxia within the tumor.


The optical probe measured nearly constant blood volume and a significant drop in hemoglobin saturation of about 30% after 10 Gy over the time scale of less than 30 minutes. The averaged R2* within the tumor volume increased by 15% after the 10 Gy dose, which is consistent with the optical results. The simulations and experiments support likely dynamic metabolic changes and/or fast vasoconstrictive signals are occurring that change the oxygen concentrations significantly, but not cell death or proliferation.


Significant oxygen changes were observed to occur within 30 minutes, coinciding with the treatment time scale. This dynamic is very important for patient specific adaptive therapy. For hypofractionated therapy, the local instantaneous oxygen content is likely the most important variable to control. The invention of a bedside device for the purpose of measuring the instantaneous response to large radiation doses would be an important step to future improvements in outcome.