Date of Graduation


Document Type

Dissertation (PhD)

Program Affiliation

Medical Physics

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Advisor/Committee Chair

X Ronald Zhu, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Lei Dong, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Radhe Mohan, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Narayan Sahoo, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Sastry Vedam, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Peter A Balter, Ph.D. and Susan Tucker, Ph.D.


The clinical advantage for protons over conventional high-energy x-rays stems from their unique depth-dose distribution, which delivers essentially no dose beyond the end of range. In order to achieve it, accurate localization of the tumor volume relative to the proton beam is necessary. For cases where the tumor moves with respiration, the resultant dose distribution is sensitive to such motion. One way to reduce uncertainty caused by respiratory motion is to use gated beam delivery. The main goal of this dissertation is to evaluate the respiratory gating technique in both passive scattering and scanning delivery mode. Our hypothesis for the study was that optimization of the parameters of synchrotron operation and respiratory gating can lead to greater efficiency and accuracy of respiratory gating for all modes of synchrotron-based proton treatment delivery. The hypothesis is tested in two specific aims. The specific aim #1 is to assess the efficiency of respiratory-gated proton beam delivery and optimize the synchrotron operations for the gated proton therapy. A simulation study was performed and introduced an efficient synchrotron operation pattern, called variable Tcyc. In addition, the simulation study estimated the efficiency in the respiratory gated scanning beam delivery mode as well. The specific aim #2 is to assess the accuracy of beam delivery in respiratory-gated proton therapy. The simulation study was extended to the passive scattering mode to estimate the quality of pulsed beam delivery to the residual motion for several synchrotron operation patterns with the gating technique. The results showed that variable Tcyc operation can offer good reproducible beam delivery to the residual motion at a certain phase of the motion. For respiratory gated scanning beam delivery, the impact of motion on the dose distributions by scanned beams was investigated by measurement. The results showed the threshold for motion for a variety of scan patterns and the proper number of paintings for normal and respiratory gated beam deliveries. The results of specific aims 1 and 2 provided supporting data for implementation of the respiratory gating beam delivery technique into both passive and scanning modes and the validation of the hypothesis.


Protons, Synchrotron, Respiratory gating, Passive scattering, Spot scanning, Inter play effect



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