2009 Article Dosimetry ICNCT13 In-vivo Studies Radiobiology Reactors Year 2009

Dosimetry and radiobiology at the new RA-3 reactor boron neutron capture therapy (BNCT) facility: Application to the treatment of experimental oral cancer

Applied Radiation and Isotopes, 2009

Authors:   Pozzi E.,Nigg D.W.,Miller M.,Thorp S.I.,Heber E.M.,Zarza L.,Estryk G.,Monti A.,Molinari A.J.,Garabalino M.,Itoiz M.E.,Aromando R.F.,Quintana J.,Trivillin V.A.,Schwint A.E.,
Journal: Applied Radiation and Isotopes
Abstract: The National Atomic Energy Commission of Argentina (CNEA) constructed a novel thermal neutron source for use in boron neutron capture therapy (BNCT) applications at the RA-3 research reactor facility located in Buenos Aires. The aim of the present study was to perform a dosimetric characterization of the facility and undertake radiobiological studies of BNCT in an experimental model of oral cancer in the hamster cheek pouch. The free-field thermal flux was 7.1null109 n cm-2 s-1 and the fast neutron flux was 2.5null106 n cm-2 s-1, indicating a very well-thermalized neutron field with negligible fast neutron dose. For radiobiological studies it was necessary to shield the body of the hamster from the neutron flux while exposing the everted cheek pouch bearing the tumors. To that end we developed a lithium (enriched to 95% in 6Li) carbonate enclosure. Groups of tumor-bearing hamsters were submitted to BPA-BNCT, GB-10-BNCT, (GB-10+BPA)-BNCT or beam only treatments. Normal (non-cancerized) hamsters were treated similarly to evaluate normal tissue radiotoxicity. The total physical dose delivered to tumor with the BNCT treatments ranged from 6 to 8.5 Gy. Tumor control at 30 days ranged from 73% to 85%, with no normal tissue radiotoxicity. Significant but reversible mucositis in precancerous tissue surrounding tumors was associated to BPA-BNCT. The therapeutic success of different BNCT protocols in treating experimental oral cancer at this novel facility was unequivocally demonstrated. (copyright) 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.