Radiation Oncology Physics in a Pandemic Era

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The Department of Physics & Astronomy presents Radiation Oncology Physics in a Pandemic Era, with Dr. Charles Kirkby, Jack Ady Cancer Centre, Lethbridge.

Thursday, April 08, from 9 a.m. to 10:15 a.m.

Join us on Zoom: uleth.zoom.us/j/99069795964

In this talk I’ll begin with an overview of operations at the Jack Ady Cancer Centre and then delve into some of the specific academic problems I’ve been working on, specifically radiotherapy plan optimization in the presence of very low density media in the treatment of lung cancer, and applications of machine learning to prostate cancer outcomes analysis.

I’ll also discuss an exciting development on the COVID-19 front. Historical case reports dating back to pre-WWII, and further pre-clinical evidence suggests that low doses (< 2 Gy) of radiation to the lungs may induce an immuno-modulatory effect and provide an effective treatment for pneumonia. We have suggested that this could provide a means of treating COVID-19 pneumonia in more severely affected patients.  At this time, roughly a dozen clinical trials are ongoing.  I’ll review work we’ve done to re-create historical dose distributions and a mathematical model that can be used to interpret the results of clinical trials.

Room or Area: 


Catherine Drenth | catherine.drenth@uleth.ca | (403) 329-2280 | uleth.ca/artsci/physics-astronomy