Early tumour detection and response monitoring require maximum sensitivity and specificity of the imaging methods. The programme focuses on the clinical evaluation and development of new more specific molecular tracers for the early detection of tumour cells. A large number of new and potentially more specific tracers than fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) will be tested including amino-acid analogues, small tumour-binding peptides, aptamers, peptides binding to mutant p53 proteins and nanoparticles. The more tumour specific the tracer, the more accurately it will be possible to image the true tumour cell density, and more importantly, the true response of the tumour to therapy. There is also a need to consolidate the experience in the use of recently developed molecular tracers to assess radiotherapy and chemotherapy response in order to improve on state of the art treatments. To maximise the sensitivity and tumour image quality, a high-resolution, wide field-of-view, ultra-sensitive PET-CT camera, capable of imaging half the human body in a few minutes, will be developed. New adaptive therapy planning and biological optimisation codes and a dedicated PET-CT detector for incorporation in treatment units will be designed in close corporation between university researchers and SME's. This will allow an efficient clinical integration and high patient throughput. The associated increase in accuracy of tumour imaging and three-dimensional in vivo tumour responsiveness data will hopefully allow the clinical introduction of accurate biologically based adaptive treatment optimization methods. Some of the work-packages will try to conenct to teh Genpe, Emir and Enlight programmes but do not depend on these programmes.
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Funding SchemeIP - Integrated Project