EPSRC logo

Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/N510117/1
Title: Development of a multipurpose small animal phantom for pre-clinical radiotherapy studies
Principal Investigator: Greenman, Professor J
Other Investigators:
Cawthorne, Dr CJ
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Department: Biomedical Sciences
Organisation: University of Hull
Scheme: Technology Programme
Starts: 01 April 2016 Ends: 31 March 2019 Value (£): 193,197
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Pharmaceuticals and Biotechnology
Related Grants:
Panel History:  
Summary on Grant Application Form
The initial aim of the project is to establish a commercial dosimetry service for pre-clinical radiobiology studies which will i)

improve the data and accuracy of experiments via provision of state of the art dosimetry, ii) reduce the total number of

animals used and iii) provide a novel 3D tissue-based platform for study of radiosensitizers.

This will be achieved through the development of standardized dosimetry protocols that will reduce dose uncertainties, and

the development of a multipurpose small animal phantom. A number of different irradiation units are currently employed

across the UK using their own dosimetry schedules, therefore as part of establishing the new service a comprehensive

audit of current practices will be undertaken. Due to the steep dose responses in radiation studies a 5% reduction in dose

uncertainty would roughly halve the number of animals required to achieve the same statistical relevance. The definition of

standards and quality assurance procedures for radiobiological studies will help regulate preclinical radiotherapy activities.

This will increase the confidence of clinical researchers and the funding bodies in such methods, as well as opening new

market opportunities for dosimetry services offered by the National Physics Laboratory (NPL). The proposed new

dosimetry service for pre-clinical imaging will scale-down established methodologies from the clinical to provide confidence

and accuracy for pre-clinical work, bringing the latter up to the same standard as the existing provision for patients. As a

major supplier of x-ray equipment, Xstrahl Ltd will benefit from an increase in radiobiological studies as the economic and

methodological barriers to entry are lowered.

A unique type of phantom will also be developed that is capable of housing a bespoke microfluidic device, containing a

tissue biopsy that will offer an alternative in vivo-like option for radiation-drug synergistic studies. The phantom will contain

tissues slices, e.g. 4mm x 4mm x 0.2mm from xenograft models or human biopsies and these can then be used to

measure the effects of irradiation with or without drugs, under precisely controlled conditions. Furthermore these tissue studies will incorporate all the improved dosimetry measurements thus significantly improving the experimental accuracy.

The project addresses issues identified by research organisations, funding bodies and the clinical community and opens up

new business opportunities for NPL, improvements in technology for Xstrahl Ltd and licensing or spin-out options for the

University of Hull.
Key Findings
This information can now be found on Gateway to Research (GtR) http://gtr.rcuk.ac.uk
Potential use in non-academic contexts
This information can now be found on Gateway to Research (GtR) http://gtr.rcuk.ac.uk
Description This information can now be found on Gateway to Research (GtR) http://gtr.rcuk.ac.uk
Date Materialised
Sectors submitted by the Researcher
This information can now be found on Gateway to Research (GtR) http://gtr.rcuk.ac.uk
Project URL:  
Further Information:  
Organisation Website: http://www.hull.ac.uk