Target tracking using DMLC for volumetric modulated arc therapy: A simulation study

Baozhou Sun, Dharanipathy Rangaraj, Lech Papiez, Swetha Oddiraju, Deshan Yang, H. Harold Li

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Purpose: Target tracking using dynamic multileaf collimator (DMLC) is a promising approach for intrafraction motion management in radiation therapy. The purpose of this work is to develop a DMLC tracking algorithm capable of delivering volumetric-modulated arc therapy (VMAT) to the targets that experience two-dimensional (2D) rigid motion in the beam's eye view. Methods: The problem of VMAT delivery to moving targets is formulated as a control problem with constraints. The relationships between gantry speed, gantry acceleration, MLC leaf-velocity, dose rate, and target motion are derived. An iterative search algorithm is developed to find numerical solutions for efficient delivery of a specific VMAT plan to the moving target using 2D DMLC tracking. The delivery of five VMAT lung plans is simulated. The planned and delivered fluence maps in the target-reference frame are calculated and compared. Results: The simulation demonstrates that the 2D tracking algorithm is capable of delivering the VMAT plan to a moving target fast and accurately without violating the machine constraints and the integrity of the treatment plan. The average delivery time is only 29 s longer than that of no-tracking delivery, 101 versus 72 s, respectively. The fluence maps are normalized to 200 MU and the average root-mean-square error between the desired and the delivered fluence is 2.1 MU, compared to 14.8 MU for no-tracking and 3.6 MU for one-dimensional tracking. Conclusions: A locally optimal MLC tracking algorithm for VMAT delivery is proposed, aiming at shortest delivery time while maintaining treatment plan invariant. The inconsequential increase of treatment time due to DMLC tracking is clinically desirable, which makes VMAT with DMLC tracking attractive in treating moving tumors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6116-6124
Number of pages9
JournalMedical physics
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2010


  • DMLC
  • IMRT
  • VMAT
  • motion management


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