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Targeting tumors: Ion beam accelerators take aim at cancer
Date:2/11/2014

EVENT: Advances in the design and operation of particle accelerators built for basic physics research are leading to the rapid evolution of machines that deliver cancer-killing beams. Hear about the latest developments and challenges in this field from a physicist, a radiobiologist, and a clinical oncologist, and participate in a discussion about cost, access, and ethics at a symposium organized by the U.S. Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory ("Targeting Tumors: Ion Beam Accelerators Take Aim at Cancer") and at a related press briefing--both to be held at the 2014 meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

WHEN: Sunday, February 16, 2014, 8:00 a.m. Central Time (symposium) and 11:00 a.m. (press briefing)

WHERE: Symposium: Hyatt Regency Chicago, Grand Ballroom A; Press Briefing: Swissotel, AAAS briefing room, adjacent to the newsroom, second floor.

WEBCAST: For reporters unable to attend the meeting, the press briefing portion will be webcast live and archived in the AAAS meeting newsroom.

DETAILS: As particle accelerator technology has been incorporated into the clinical practice of treating cancer, the trend has been toward less expensive, more versatile particle beam delivery systems, designed for improved efficacy and greater access for cancer patients around the world. Proton and ion beams are particularly attractive in treating cancer because they deposit most of their energy where the beam stops (i.e., in the tumor) rather than in the tissue through which they travel. As a result, particle beams can deliver cell-killing energy with extreme precision, allowing less damage to adjacent healthy tissue than conventional x-ray or electron radiation treatments.

Protons have been in use for some time at several facilities in the U.S. Beams of heavier ions such as carbon offer promise of even greater efficacy, based on the physics and expected rad
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Contact: Karen McNulty Walsh
kmcnulty@bnl.gov
631-344-8350
DOE/Brookhaven National Laboratory
Source:Eurekalert

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