Edgecock, R., Bennett, J.R.J., Green, S, Phoenix, B and Scott, MC (2014) A Study of the Production of Neutrons for Boron Neutron Capture Therapy using a Proton Accelerator. In: Proceedings of the 5th International Particle Accelerator Conference. IPAC 2014 . JACoW, Dresden, Germany, pp. 2195-2197. ISBN 978-3-95450-132-8

Boron Neutron Capture Therapy (BNCT) is a binary cancer therapy particularly well-suited to treating aggressive tumours that exhibit a high degree of infiltration of the surrounding healthy tissue. Such tumours, for example of the brain and lung, provide some of the most challenging problems in oncology. The first element of the therapy is boron-10 which is preferentially introduced into the cancerous cells using a carrier compound. Boron-10 has a very high capture cross-section with the other element of the therapy, thermal neutrons, resulting in the production of a lithium nucleus and an alpha particle which destroy the cell they are created in. However, a large flux of neutrons is required and until recently the only source used was a nuclear reactor. In Birmingham, studies of an existing BNCT facility using a 2.8 MeV proton beam and a solid lithium target have found a way to increase the beam power to a sufficient level to allow clinical trials, while maintaining the target solid. In this paper, we will introduce BNCT, describe the work in Birmingham and compare with other accelerator-driven BNCT projects around the World.

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