MO-FG-CAMPUS-TeP3-02: Benchmarks of a Proton Relative Biological Effectiveness (RBE) Model for DNA Double Strand Break (DSB) Induction in the FLUKA, MCNP, TOPAS, and RayStation™ Treatment Planning System




Validate implementation of a published RBE model for DSB induction (RBEDSB) in several general purpose Monte Carlo (MC) code systems and the RayStation™ treatment planning system (TPS). For protons and other light ions, DSB induction is a critical initiating molecular event that correlates well with the RBE for cell survival.


An efficient algorithm to incorporate information on proton and light ion RBEDSB from the independently tested Monte Carlo Damage Simulation (MCDS) has now been integrated into MCNP (Stewart et al. PMB 60, 8249–8274, 2015), FLUKA, TOPAS and a research build of the RayStation™ TPS. To cross-validate the RBEDSB model implementation LET distributions, depth-dose and lateral (dose and RBEDSB) profiles for monodirectional monoenergetic (100 to 200 MeV) protons incident on a water phantom are compared. The effects of recoil and secondary ion production (2H+, 3H+, 3He2+, 4He2+), spot size (3 and 10 mm), and transport physics on beam profiles and RBEDSB are examined.


Depth-dose and RBEDSB profiles among all of the MC models are in excellent agreement using a 1 mm distance criterion (width of a voxel). For a 100 MeV proton beam (10 mm spot), RBEDSB = 1.2 ± 0.03 (− 2–3%) at the tip of the Bragg peak and increases to 1.59 ± 0.3 two mm distal to the Bragg peak. RBEDSB tends to decrease as the kinetic energy of the incident proton increases.


The model for proton RBEDSB has been accurately implemented into FLUKA, MCNP, TOPAS and the RayStation™TPS. The transport of secondary light ions (Z > 1) has a significant impact on RBEDSB, especially distal to the Bragg peak, although light ions have a small effect on (dosexRBEDSB) profiles. The ability to incorporate spatial variations in proton RBE within a TPS creates new opportunities to individualize treatment plans and increase the therapeutic ratio.

Dr. Erik Traneus is employed full-time as a Research Scientist at RaySearch Laboratories. The research build of the RayStation used in the study was made available to the University of Washington free of charge. RaySearch Laboratories did not provide any monetary support for the reported studies.