Purpose: To develop a treatment planning system (TPS) based on Monte Carlo (MC) dose algorithm for small animal radiation with the Gamma Knife (GK) Perfexion machine.
Methods: High precision with small collimation focus makes the GK an excellent modality for small animal radiation research. It is ideal to follow the clinical procedure as received during patient treatments to achieve a high level of precision. However, the patient TPS (Leksell GammaPlan®) requires a manufacturer defined fiducial box for the GK coordinate geometry which is too large compared with the size of a small animal. The image spatial resolution of typical clinical CT or MR is too coarse for small animals. To overcome these difficulties, we developed an in-house TPS which uses high-resolution micro-CT or micro-MR images and obviates a fiducial box with markers. Instead, we built an acrylic box with a reference point that correlates to the GK focal point. The acrylic box is mounted to the GK couch. A cradle with a marker that has a known relative position to the box is scanned with a mouse using micro-CT /MR. Our previously developed MC algorithm for the GK is used to calculate accurate dose distributions based on the high-resolution images.
Results: A process of irradiating mice based on micro-CT/MR is established using our in-house TPS. A graphical user interface is developed to allow a planner to easily 1) create irradiation plans; 2) determine the treatment sites guided by the image; 3) place multiple shots with the option of different collimator sizes; 4) calculate dose using MC method which is capable of taking heterogeneity into account and 5) generate shot coordinates and irradiation time for machine delivery.
Conclusion: Our image guided TPS greatly facilitates the procedure for small animal radiation with the Gamma Knife.
Not Applicable / None Entered.