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Evelyn de Jong received NRS Travel Grant (1)

Travel grants March 2015

Evelyn de Jong

PhD student
GROW division oncology
Maastro Clinic, Maastricht

The NRS travel grant allowed me to go to the four day ESTRO course on Molecular Imaging and Radiation Oncology which was held in Madrid. This course aimed at providing the participants profound knowledge and skills to deal with chances and challenges of the use of Molecular Imaging methods in all fields of radiation oncology. For my PhD project I will analyze repeated FDG-PET/CT scans of stage IV non-small cell lung cancer patients which are treated with Paclitaxel-Carboplatin-Bevacizumab chemotherapy with or without Nitroglycerin patches.

During the course 24 lectures about technical and biological basics of PET and MR and related physics as well as clinical applications of PET and MRI in staging and treatment planning were given by the faculty. Next to that there were three hands-on workshops and group discussions about Clinical Target Volume (CTV) concepts, imaging in follow up and Gross Tumor Volume (GTV) delineation.

Participants of this course were working as senior resident or young specialist in radiation oncology, nuclear medicine or radiology. Due to this multidisciplinarity, during the hands-on workshops and group discussions, I have learned about imaging methods and delineation concepts used in different hospitals. The lectures gave me insight in the different ways of thinking of physicians and physicists.
I have learned that PET can have an added value in target volume delineation and response assessment but that it is very important to think about relevant biological processes, PET tracers, scan protocols, image quality and image registration to correctly interpret the images. Next to that I have learned that MRI, which is increasingly used, can be used for response assessment as well and is an imaging technique that can give a lot of extra information. But also in MRI it is important to understand the process to interpret the images. This course has given me an overview of the important things on molecular imaging in radiation oncology and helped me in improving PET image interpretation for my research project.