About the Division
By its nature, medical physics is a multidisciplinary specialty, spanning such diverse areas as physics, mathematics, chemistry, computer science, and engineering. At most institutions, radiation biology and medical physics are separate and distinct, with little to no interaction and collaboration among specialists.
At UT Southwestern Medical Center, we take the opposite approach, using our multidisciplinary environment to develop radiation delivery technologies that scale from the pre-clinical to clinical settings.
We are focused on four main areas of research:
Computational Medical Physics
This includes computational methods in particle therapy (physical simulation, facility design and technology optimization); Monte Carlo treatment planning for small animal SRS; and modeling of in vivo tumor and normal tissue response to large dose per fraction radiation.
Adaptive Radiotherapy Strategies
Emphasizing precision to facilitate large dose per fraction radiation delivery to many anatomical sites, our research includes: development of new clinical delivery technologies (such as extended source-to-surface distance, or SSD, SBRT and robotic couch and motion adaptive delivery); integration of real-time tracking technologies in the clinical research environment (including electromagnetic tumor tracking and four-dimensional imaging coupled to mechanical and electronic delivery systems); algorithmic development for motion adaptive therapies (including DMLC and Arc IMRT); and systematic development and evaluation of molecular imaging in clinical and pre-clinical applications.
Advanced Pre-clinical Irradiation Capabilities
We develop and build advanced anatomical and molecular imaging for small animal irradiators, including device fabrication and dosimetry, and “common animal environments” for imaging and irradiation. We also evaluate and expand models for assessment of normal tissue toxicity.
Advanced Radiation Dosimetry
Techniques are developed for real-time applications as well as to establish national dosimetry standards for both academia and the industry.