4D proton therapy, radiation-resistant tumors, interpreting medical images

external magnetic field.

Electron paramagnetic imaging (EPRI) obtains pictures of molecules with unpaired electrons in a similar way that MRI obtains images of atomic nuclei such as the hydrogen in water: an image is formed when paramagnetic molecules, lined up in a magnetic field, absorb and then re-emit electromagnetic waves in or near the microwave portion of the spectrum. Using a series of magnetic fields that vary in strength over a given region of space, these emissions can be reconstructed into a 3D image.

Where EPRI is advantageous over MRI is in providing quantitative images of the distribution of oxygen in living tissues. Oxygen, or its absence, is central to many diseases; it is a factor in cancer aggressiveness and in the response to radiation and chemotherapy. Pelizzari expects that one day this EPR methodology will obtain submillimeter-resolution maps and also be scaled up to human dimensions. A potential long-term benefit of EPR imaging should be in providing quick feedback on the results of cancer therapy in days or even hours, without the use of radioactivity. In their talk at the meeting, Pelizzari's group will present EPR oxygen images superimposed on MRI anatomical images (WE-D-I-609-8)



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