PTCOG 2023 

By Andrea Monti Hughes, María Pedrosa Rivera, Naonori Hu and Setareh Fatemi

The Particle Therapy Co-Operative Group (PTCOG) was founded in 1985 and is a non-profit worldwide organization of scientists and professionals interested in proton, light ion and heavy charged particle radiotherapy. The mission of PTCOG is to promote science, technology and practical clinical application of particle therapy. PTCOG promotes education and global activities in the field of particle radiation therapy, organizing scientific meetings and educational sessions. In 2019, in Manchester UK, BNCT was included in the PTCOG international conference programme and the PTCOG BNCT working group was created. 
This year, the 61st edition of the annual PTCOG was held in Madrid, Spain, from June 10th to 16th, 2023. This congress consisted of a Spanish Workshop and Educational sessions on different aspects of Particle Therapy: clinics, radiobiology, physics and technology. This year, Boron Neutron Capture Therapy was included as a topic of interest in the Educational Sessions. This presentation was given by Dr. Wolfgang Sauerwein, Germany. 
There were Industry symposiums organized by different companies during the congress. In particular, TAE Life Sciences and Neutron Therapeutics organized a Special BNCT Symposium, entitled: “Advancing Accelerator-based BNCT for cancer treatment” on June 13th. Different topics has been covered related to BNCT like the history of BNCT clinical trials, latest developments in the field of new boron compounds, clinical studies and possible targets for BNCT and accelerator technologies. The speakers involved in this symposium were: Dr. Maria Hawkins (United Kingdom); Andrea Monti Hughes, PhD (Argentina); Dr. Lisa Licitra (Italy); Dr. Tanja Mälkiä (Finland); Noah Smick, PhD (Neutron Therapeutics); Chad Lee, PhD (TAE Life Sciences).
The Scientific Meeting lasted 3 days, and concluded with a facility tour to two Protontherapy Centres. As to the scientific oral sessions, there were two dedicated specially to BNCT called “BNCT modelling and New Approaches” and “BNCT Biology”. There have been 10 oral presentations, and the countries involved were Italy, USA, Denmark, Argentina, Finland and Japan. As to posters sessions, BNCT exhibited 9 posters (Spain, Germany, Argentina, Japan, USA, Italy). 

Video: Visit PTCOG-61 with the CTF!

Finally, the PTCOG BNCT subcommittee organized an hybrid meeting (including a zoom connection to those not present at the conference) to continue working on BNCT diffusion and the interaction between BNCT and PTCOG communities. The topics that were discussed, for example, included rotation of co-chairs (W. Sauerwein), participation in other meetings and publishing white papers on BNCT (H. Koivunoro), between others. The topics related to Electronic library of BNCT clinical trials, paper repository, collaboration with other societies, patient educational videos, webinars were mentioned under a CTF presentation, in which it was described these and more activities carried out by the CTF, under our International Society on Neutron Capture Therapy (Ignacio Porras, María Pedrosa and Andrea Monti Hughes). The presentation provided by the CTF is available here.

The CTF ambassadors at PTCOG:
Naonori Hu, María Medrosa Rivera, Setareh Fatemi and Andrea Monti Hughes.

BNCT presentations

BNCT oral session

  • Microdosimetry in BNCT: An experimental tool for beam quality monitoring Speaker: Anna Selva, Italy
  • Towards an adequate description of the dose-response relationship in BNCT of brain tumours Speaker: Barbara Marcaccio, Italy
  • BNCT with the use of secondary neutrons? Monte Carlo Simulations and Cell Survival Experiments Speaker: Villads Lundsteen Jacobsen, Denmark
  • Enhanced cell killing effects by proton boron reaction: Experimental evidence and theoretical analyses Speaker: Dalong Pang, USA
  • Neutron capture reactions to treat Alzheimer’s disease: Toxicity evaluation on nervous system cells Speaker: Valeria Pascali, Italy
  • Development of novel targeted boronated small molecule drugs for BNCT and comparison with BPA in neutron irradiation experiments Speaker:  Kendall Morrison, USA
  • Integrin αvβ3 targeted long retention type boron carrier for Boron Neutron Capture Therapy in F98 rat glioma models Speaker:  Kohei Tsujino, Japan
  • Systems Medicine on BNCT – New perspectives for biomarker discovery and molecular mechanisms through clinical proteomics approach Speaker:  Pierluigi Mauri, Italy
  • Tumor response to BNCT and survival outcomes with two boronophenylalanine (BPA) infusion schedules in recurrent head-and-neck squamous cell carcinoma Speaker:  Hanna Koivunoro, Finland
    Boron Neutron Capture Therapy (BNCT) combined with the prebiotic Oligo-Fucoidan: Effect on microbiota in an experimental oral cancer model Speaker:  Andrea Monti Hughes, Argentina
  • Implementation of a beam shaping system designed for an accelerator-based BNCT system optimsed for head and neck cancer. Speaker: Naonori Hu, Japan

BNCT posters

  • Preliminary results of the automatic segmentation of Head-Neck tumours in CT images using an nnUNet to enhance BNCT TPS Poster Presenter:  Setareh Fatemi, Italy
  • Simulation of normal Brain dosimetry of bnct with fractionated x-Ray therapy for application to newly diagnosed glioblastoma Poster Presenter:  Kei Nakai, Japan
  • Tumor microenvironment influence in BNCT treated HT29 colon adenocarcinoma cell line Poster Presenter: Carla Rodriguez, Argentina 
    The photon isoeffective dose model: A new formalism in hadron therapy for dose calculations in photon equivalent units Poster Presenter:  Lucrecia Mariel Valeriano, Argentina
  • Development of the extended collimator for accelerator-based boron neutron capture therapy Poster Presenter:  Hiroaki Kumada, Japan
    Neutron Beam System for Accelerator-Based Boron Neutron Capture Therapy Poster Presenter:  Alex Dunaevsky, USA
  • Experimental validation of a gamma ray detection module for neutron capture enhanced particle therapy Poster Presenter:  Anita Caracciolo, Italy
  • NanOx-based multiscale modelling of the biological dose in BNCT to estimate the impact of boron microdistributions Poster Presenter:  Maria Pedrosa Rivera, France

    In particular, the President of the ISNCT, Prof. Ignacio Porras, provided an overview of BNCT, under the presentation “Current status of BNCT and perspectives”. You can take a look on the presentation here.
    The next PTCOG meeting will be held in Singapore in the dates: 10-14 June 2024.

    You can read about the past PTCOG meetings in our newsletter here and here.
The BNCT community at PTCOG-61