Autumn IGT Network+ meeting
The Autumn IGT Network+ meeting took place on Monday 16 October at the University of Manchester. The event attracted over 60 attendees and was hosted by Prof Marcel van Herk who also leads the network’s Theme 2, focused energy delivery and motion compensation.
As usual, the event was preceded by a closed Network Management Group meeting that morning. The IGT Network+ meeting then began with lunch, followed by a welcome from Prof Marcel van Herk and an update on the network’s activities and growth from Prof Sebastien Ourselin.
Sessions of talks:
The afternoon was divided into 3 sessions of image-guided therapy talks from academic and clinical speakers, broken up by a poster session and other networking opportunities.
The first session was focused on different ways that researchers had advanced and adapted magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to improve targeting and guidance. This included a talk on using oxygen enhanced MRI to guide radiotherapy and a talk on how combining MRI with complementary information from simultaneous positron emission tomography (PET) scans can improve guidance. The final talk of this session was from Dr Alan McWilliam about the MR-Linac project which combines MRI with a linear accelerator to precisely locate tumours that move during treatment, allowing radiotherapy to be accurately and directly delivered to cancer patients.
Attendees then heard from four early career researchers during the second session. This included a researcher from the PROTEUS team who spoke about their work to speed up the time it takes to make an accurate diagnosis of lung disease. This is done by using a microendoscopic fibre bundle to inject ‘smart’ fluid into the lungs, which then makes any pathogens fluoresce and therefore observable.
Following a poster session, the final session of the day focused on better targeting therapy. Talks included incorporating image guidance to improve the accuracy of proton therapy, and using shape and pattern recognition with computed tomography (CT) scans to identify micro-fractures on the wrist bone that may conventionally be missed.
These tri-annual meetings are an essential part of the network’s aim to fertilise and enhance collaboration across the UK IGT community. They provide a unique opportunity for members of the field to meet, share advice and cross-pollinate ideas. Details of our next meeting will be announced on this website and we welcome new members from both academic institutions and industry, so if you are aware of colleagues working in the IGT field who might be interested then please feel free to pass on information about the network and encourage them to join.