Our group has constructed the small animal radiation research platform (SARRP) for delivering focal, kilo-voltage radiation to targets in small animals under robotic control using cone-beam CT guidance. The present work was undertaken to support the SARRP’s treatment planning capabilities. We have devised a comprehensive system for characterizing the radiation dosimetry in water for the SARRP and have developed a Monte Carlo dose engine with the intent of reproducing these measured results. We find that the SARRP provides sufficient therapeutic dose rates ranging from 102 to 228 cGy min(-1) at 1 cm depth for the available set of high-precision beams ranging from 0.5 to 5 mm in size. In terms of depth-dose, the mean of the absolute percentage differences between the Monte Carlo calculations and measurement is 3.4% over the full range of sampled depths spanning 0.5-7.2 cm for the 3 and 5 mm beams. The measured and computed profiles for these beams agree well overall; of note, good agreement is observed in the profile tails. Especially for the smallest 0.5 and 1 mm beams, including a more realistic description of the effective x-ray source into the Monte Carlo model may be important.
Tryggestad E, Armour M, Iordachita I, Verhaegen F & Wong JW.