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Very High Energy Electrons Beam for Radiotherapy

Project description

A compact device for effective delivery of radiotherapy

Radiotherapy uses beams of ionising radiation such as X-rays to kill cancer cells. It causes irreversible damage to the cells’ genetic material but cannot discriminate between healthy and cancer cells. As a result, the toxicity and long-term impact to nearby organs limits the use of radiotherapy in oncology. The EU-funded ebeam4therapy project capitalises on a previously developed device that generates a very high-energy electron beam. The radiotherapy device is small, simple and cost-effective – and has great potential for use in clinical care. Researchers will advance the technology and optimise machinery components and radiation dosage, building a machine prototype that brings the device a step closer to clinical applicability.


Despite advanced treatment planning and delivery, conventional oncologic radiotherapy (RT) is limited by acute toxicity and long-term side effects caused by radiation delivery to healthy tissues, which often restricts the ability to deliver a sufficient dose of radiation to the tumours. The problem is exacerbated when treating cancers that are either deep down inside the human body, or in delicate areas where toxicity to nearby organs could cause serious side effects, especially when treating obese patients, whose numbers are increasing globally. Thus, an accessible and cost-effective alternative to current RT modalities is urgently needed. In ERC-PoC project Vherapy we made a breakthrough in demonstrating the viability of delivering high-quality particle beams with compact laser plasma accelerators for very high energy electron radiotherapy (VHEE-RT). We demonstrated that such a VHEE beam can be produced with a single laser beam using a new injection scheme, making the acceleration machinery small, simple and cost effective, thereby giving this device of the future substantial competitive advantage. The objectives of the eBeam4Therapy project are to optimize VHEE beam performances for radiotherapy applications further, to characterise the 3D dose deposition, to improve and scale-down each component of the machine, and finally to build a machine prototype that demonstrates the technical feasibility in an economically competitive setting. The commercial feasibility is validated with real market players and the project expands the existing network of collaborators and sources additional investment to accomplish the next steps in technological & commercial development to speed up market entry. eBeam4Therapy aims to revolutionise cancer therapy by providing better clinical outcomes and radically improving the quality of life of cancer patients at a lower financial burden to payers and economies, thus addressing a real and immediate global societal challenge.


Net EU contribution
€ 2 061 418,00
7610001 Rehovot

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Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Total cost
€ 2 061 418,75

Participants (1)