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Neutron Therapy


Feasibility Study for the Creation of a Neutron Therapy Centre on the Basis of Nuclear Reactors

Tech Area / Field

  • MED-RAD/Radiomedicine/Medicine
  • MED-DID/Diagnostics & Devices/Medicine

3 Approved without Funding

Registration date

Leading Institute
Medical Radiological Scientific Center, Russia, Kaluga reg., Obninsk

Supporting institutes

  • FEI (IPPE), Russia, Kaluga reg., Obninsk\nKarpov Institute of Physical Chemistry (2), Russia, Kaluga reg., Obninsk

Project summary

During the last decades all over the world the number of oncological patients is constantly increased, and the cancer mortality is one among the most frequent reasons of premature death. Nowadays the huge arsenal of the last achievements in biology, physics, chemistry aims at the struggle against cancer. Almost all kinds of ionizing and electromagnetic radiations are used for diagnostic and therapy of tumors. As it is now known about 15% patients with serious, unfavorable cancerous tumors (about 40000 - 50000 persons per year in Russia) need in the neutron radiation therapy.

The neutron advantages was convincing shown at treatment of a lot of radioresistant cancer tumors, in overcoming relapse and metastasize. So, results of treatment of salivary gland tumors, soft tissue sarcomas and osteosarcomas, adenosarcomas, melanomas and chondrosarcomas were 20 to 45% higher due to neutrons compared to traditional gamma therapy.

The neutron therapy is now spread in many advanced countries. Special constructed medical accelerators are ordinary used. In the same time the interest to use of nuclear reactors, which have high neutron fluxes, is raised. They have neutrons with different energy. It is very important for realization of the neutron capture therapy.

The problem of providing Russian oncology by neutron sources can be solved without big funding - by reconstruction of operating now nuclear reactors and by creation the special medical units on this base. Besides the researches to create the small, transportable, safe medical reactor is being carried, using experience of nuclear-scientists.

The using of nuclear reactors for cancer therapy has become possible because new fundamental knowledge about a nature of biological action of neutrons was obtained. The medical unit at the fast neutron reactor BR-10 in result of long co-operated work of physician-radiologists and physicists from the Medical Radiological Research Center and the Institute of Physics and Power Engineering in Obninsk. More than 250 patients have been treated with rather promising results by the fast neutron radiation there.

Objective of the project consists in development of the system and complex program (or several projects) of creation of progressive technologies for cancer treatment with application neutron beams of nuclear reactors, in a basis of which - use of experience of the scientists, engineers and technicians, working earlier in the weapon field.

Peculiarity of the present offer is the fact, that the initiators, coordinators of the project and basic consumers of results are physicians, convinced in efficiency of nuclear reactor neutrons in treatment a lot of tumors. Therefore prospects of use of developments, expected the social and economic results of work have large social meaning and optimum ways of introduction to practice of health services.

Expected Results

It is supposed, that fulfillment of the present project, consisting in development of the feasibility substantiation of adaptation neutron beams of nuclear reactors for the medical purposes will allow to realize the system approach to decision of the problem -from fundamental researches of mechanisms of neutron biological effects up to highly technological methods of treatment of oncological patients on a basis of conversion's developments.

Basic Technical Decisions

As the fulfillment of the present project is a starting condition of construction and subsequent realization of the complex program, organization of marketing activity is planing within the framework of the given work, establishment of direct partner's relations with foreign scientists first of all from Germany (Munich), Japan (Kyoto), Holland (Petten), Korea (Seoul), the USA (OakRig, Bruchevan), preparation of information materials and the proposals to the ISTC.

First of all integration of experience of physicists, dozimetrists, mathematicians on modeling and calculation of neutron beams of nuclear reactors, their collimation and filtration, realization of monitoring, comparison of data in nuclear safety of medicine installations operation and certification therapeutic beams are supposed.

It is necessary to carry out the analysis of fundamental aspects of radiobiological effects of neutrons, mathematical models combined action of various qualities and modified radiations, substantiation of development of the new schemes of radiation influence, including the neutron capture therapy.

And, at last, third block of problems - estimation of the approaches to clinical topometry and dozimetry of neutron fields, of the requirements to neutron oncological therapy, analysis of direct and far results of treatment.

Thus, it is supposed to carry out the system approach to the decision of the complex conversional program on use of neutron beams of nuclear reactors for the distant and neutron capture therapies of tumors, that will allow to prepare the technological, medical, economic and juridical documentation on adaptation and reconstruction nuclear reactors for the medico-biological purposes in interests of widespread introduction in practice radiation oncology of distant sources of high ionizing radiation on the basis of operating and putting into operation nuclear reactors. The realization of new progressive technology of treatment oncological cases in the countries of the CIS and abroad on a commercial basis, as the form of rendering of treating-diagnostic help, and as the form of the licenses, patents, know-how and joint projects will become real.


The International Science and Technology Center (ISTC) is an intergovernmental organization connecting scientists from Kazakhstan, Armenia, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Georgia with their peers and research organizations in the EU, Japan, Republic of Korea, Norway and the United States.


ISTC facilitates international science projects and assists the global scientific and business community to source and engage with CIS and Georgian institutes that develop or possess an excellence of scientific know-how.

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