Dr Mehta on the Advantages of MRI-Guided Adaptive Radiotherapy in Cancer Care

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Minesh Mehta, MD, discusses how MRI-guided adaptive radiation therapy systems may improve disease outcomes in cancer care.

Minesh Mehta, MD, Deputy Director, chief, Radiation Oncology, Miami Cancer Institute, Baptist Health, discusses the potential utility of radiotherapy, including how the introduction of MRI-guided adaptive radiation therapy systems is improving precision and outcomes across cancer care.

Mehta begins by emphasizing that effective utilization of radiotherapy relies on precision, delivery, and accuracy, which are facilitated by advanced imaging technologies. He adds that one key advancement in this field is the introduction of the MRI-guided linear accelerator (MRI-Linac), a fusion of 2 technologies: MRI scanning and a linear accelerator for radiation delivery. By integrating an MRI scanner into the treatment system, the MRI-Linac offers unparalleled precision in imaging, allowing for detailed visualization of both normal tissues and tumors, Mehta explains.

A key advantage of the MRI-Linac is its ability to track tumor motion in real-time, enabling highly accurate radiation delivery even as the tumor moves, Mehta details. This capability ensures that radiation doses are precisely targeted to the tumor, minimizing damage to surrounding healthy tissues, he explains. Additionally, MRI-Linac facilitates the delivery of large fractions of radiation in shorter dosing schedules, which can significantly alter the biological response of the disease, Mehta notes.

Recent data, particularly in challenging-to-treat cancers like pancreatic cancer, have demonstrated the efficacy of the MRI-Linac approach, Mehta continues. The study showed that administering 5 treatments with the MRI-Linac can substantially increase local disease control rates, representing a significant advancement in cancer treatment, he reports.

Overall, the integration of MRI imaging with radiation delivery in the MRI-Linac represents a development in radiotherapy, Mehta emphasizes. This technology offers precision and accuracy in tumor targeting, leading to improved treatment outcomes and potentially transforming the management of various types of cancer. Continued research and clinical studies will further elucidate the full potential of the MRI-Linac in oncology practice.

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