About Gentle Radiotherapy

Gentle RadiotherapyA national project with international perspectives.

The aim of the project is to create a large-scale national cancer therapy platform, with fully integrated MR-workflow in the participating clinics. The ambition is that the national platform will operate with world class excellence within:

  • Clinical cancer therapy
  • Clinical research
  • Product development in the clinical setting
  • Clinical demonstration plants
  • Education

The project is part of a national innovation program funded by the Swedish Innovation Agency – Vinnova – and by the participating university hospitals in collaboration with academia and six selected industrial partners. During the autumn of 2013 an initiation phase was conducted and later followed by an experimental collaboration phase until the fall of 2016 which has now been replaced by an implementation and validation phase ending in Jan 2019. The long term strategic plan is that this project will prove a marquee initiative installing a world class environment for excellence in science and clinical treatment of cancer.

Current strategic elements

  • Planning of an implementation phase in dialogue with industry and the management of collaborating clinics.
  • Comparative studies with CT and MRI images where patients are being recruited to evaluate and launch MRI only radiotherapy processes.
  • Identifying potential barriers in the project due to knowledge gaps. The purpose of identifying these knowledge gaps is to support the overall aim of the project by guiding the research agenda.
  • Collaboration efforts with several international partners such as the Medical University of Vienna, Newcastle upon Tyne hospital and Leeds teaching hospitals.
  • Support formation and funding of focus groups focused on resolving identified knowledge gaps.
  • Marketing of the project both nationally and internationally.

 

Current operational elements

Work packages 1-4 are organised from separate teaching hospitals implementing MRI only for four separate groups of patients with support from technical suppliers who are also validating products in a clinical environment. Work package 5 consists of municipal processes such as quality assurance, product development, identifying knowledge gaps, bridging gaps between clinical implementation and academic excellence. All results are presented in public workshops, while also being presented and evaluated in conferences, press releases and in scientific journals – with regard to agreed principals of confidentiality when concerning e.g. products in pre-market stages.

WP1 – MRI only for prostate tumours/male pelvis

Work package lead:

Petra Ambolt, Lund University hospital.


WP 2 – MRI only for lower head and neck tumours

Work package lead:

Martin Lundmark and Elizabeth Morhed, Akademiska University Hospital Uppsala.


WP3 – MRI only for brain and upper H&N tumours.

Work package lead:

Maja Sohlin and Anna Karlsson Hauer, Sahlgrenska University Hospital Gothenburg.


WP4 – MRI only for pelvic tumours

Work package lead:

Joakim Jonsson, Umeå University Hospital.


WP5 – QA and infrastructure

Work package lead:

Tufve Nyholm, Akademiska University Hospital and Umeå University.

WP5 is about QA, clinical integration of mp-MRI into the radiotherapy process to facilitate research and development of individualized cancer treatments in Sweden as well as other central implementation processes.

  • Infrastructure for clinical MRinRT studies and
  • Clinical MRiRT studies.

Infrastructure for MRinRT:

Networking – five out of seven University Hospitals in Sweden are participating in WP5 and all are affected in one way or another. This network gives opportunities to collaborate through clinical MRinRT studies.

Overview of Swedish MRinRT studies: The network has updated information on ongoing and planned national clinical MRinRT studies.

MIQA – a national research database project to collect MRI imaging from all Swedish hospitals involved in radiotherapy. The long term plans is to use MIQA as a tool for both clinical research and quality registration in radiotherapy treatment.

Education – One of the aims of WP5 is to develop educational material on MR in RT.

Clinical MRinRT studies

Gold Atlas – This is a clinical MRinRT multicentre project which aims to develop a MRI-based atlas of riskorgans for MRinRT studies.