Outcome-based multiobjective optimization of lymphoma radiation therapy plans

Arezoo Modiri, Ivan Vogelius, Laura Ann Rechner, Lotte Nygård, Søren M Bentzen, Lena Specht


At its core, radiation therapy (RT) requires balancing therapeutic effects against risk of adverse events in cancer survivors. The radiation oncologist weighs numerous disease and patient-level factors when considering the expected risk-benefit ratio of combined treatment modalities. As part of this, RT plan optimization software is used to find a clinically acceptable RT plan delivering a prescribed dose to the target volume while respecting pre-defined radiation dose-volume constraints for selected organs at risk. The obvious limitation to the current approach is that it is virtually impossible to ensure the selected treatment plan could not be bettered by an alternative plan providing improved disease control and/or reduced risk of adverse events in this individual. Outcome-based optimization refers to a strategy where all planning objectives are defined by modeled estimates of a specific outcome's probability. Noting that various adverse events and disease control are generally incommensurable, leads to the concept of a Pareto-optimal plan: a plan where no single objective can be improved without degrading one or more of the remaining objectives. Further benefits of outcome-based multiobjective optimization are that quantitative estimates of risks and benefit are obtained as are the effects of choosing a different trade-off between competing objectives. Furthermore, patient-level risk factors and combined treatment modalities may be integrated directly into plan optimization. Here, we present this approach in the clinical setting of multimodality therapy for malignant lymphoma, a malignancy with marked heterogeneity in biology, target localization, and patient characteristics. We discuss future research priorities including the potential of artificial intelligence.

TidsskriftThe British journal of radiology
Udgave nummer1127
Sider (fra-til)20210303
StatusUdgivet - 1 nov. 2021


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