The physical characteristics of proton beams show a very favorable dose distribution in depth represented by the spread out Bragg peak. Through their ability to deliver laterally and distally shaped homogenous fields, proton beams have been shown to be a precise and practical method for delivering highly conformal radiotherapy. However, dose coverage of proton therapy is more sensitive than that of conventional radiotherapy to target movement. That is, proton beam treatment requires more accurate patient positioning to take full advantage of its superior conformity of dose. In addition, the degree of accuracy and reliability required in proton therapy can only be guaranteed if a robust quality assurance (QA) program is established.
Built at McLaren Cancer Institute in Flint, Michigan, the McLaren Proton Therapy Center (MPTC) and existing cancer center will be clinically and operationally integrated. The proton center is comprised of 52,000 sq. ft. of space (42,000 new and 10,000 renovated Cancer Institute space). Exterior construction began in October 2010 and was completed in December 2011. With a total cost of $80 million, the project took shape with less time and less expense than other proton facilities currently in existence.
In this presentation, the MPTC project and some clinical physics research will be introduced.