Centre for the Clinical Application of Particles seminar on “Challenges in dosimetry of particle beams with ultra-high pulse dose rates” by Francesco Romano.
Recent results from pre-clinical studies investigating the so-called FLASH effect suggest that the ultra-high pulse dose rates (UHPDR) of this modality reduces normal tissue damage whilst preserving tumour response when compared with conventional radiotherapy (RT). FLASH-RT is characterized by average dose rates of dozens of Gy/s instead of only a few Gy/min. For some studies, dose rates exceeding hundreds of Gy/s have been used for investigating the tissue response. Moreover, depending on the source of radiation, pulsed beams can be used with low repetition rate and large doses per pulse. Accurate dosimetry of high dose rate particle beams is challenging and requires the development of novel dosimetric approaches, complementary to the ones used for conventional radiotherapy. The European Joint Research Project “UHDpulse” will develop a measurement framework, encompassing reference standards traceable to SI units and validated reference methods for dose measurements with UHPDR beams. In this talk, the main challenges in dosimetry of UHPDR beams will be described and the UHDpulse project will be presented, discussing recent developments and future prospects.