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One of the most complex medical imaging systems ever developed which uses proton beams to create 3D images of the internal anatomy of cancer patients will be installed in one of the UK’s only two new NHS high energy proton beam therapy centres, helping to provide better treatment planning and monitoring for difficult to treat cancers.

Scientists are developing the instrument which will use the same proton beams that treat the cancer to create three dimensional images of a patient’s anatomy. Accurate proton CT images which can reduce dosage and targeting errors during proton beam therapy by showing how radiation interacts with the tumour site have been dubbed the ‘Holy Grail’ for this form of treatment, potentially making it a viable option for many more cancer patients.”

The new device, which will be based in the dedicated research room at The Christie NHS Foundation Trust which has been funded by The Christie charity – deploys the same type of sensors used in the Large Hadron Collider at CERN to detect fundamental particles.

The project, called OPTIma (Optimising Proton Therapy through Imaging), is funded by a £3.3 million grant from the UK’s Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC). OPTIma’s

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