Microscopic Gold Particle-Based Fiducial Markers for Proton Therapy of Prostate Cancer

Young Kyung Lim, Jungwon Kwak, Dong Wook Kim, Dongho Shin, Myonggeun Yoon, Soah Park, Jin Sung Kim, Sung Hwan Ahn, Jungwook Shin, Se Byeong Lee, Sung Yong Park, Hong Ryeol Pyo, Dae Yong Kim, Kwan Ho Cho

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: We examined the feasibility of using fiducial markers composed of microscopic gold particles and human-compatible polymers as a means to overcome current problems with conventional macroscopic gold fiducial markers, such as dose reduction and artifact generation, in proton therapy for prostate cancer. Methods and Materials: We examined two types of gold particle fiducial marker interactions: that with diagnostic X-rays and with a therapeutic proton beam. That is, we qualitatively and quantitatively compared the radiographic visibility of conventional gold and gold particle fiducial markers and the CT artifacts and dose reduction associated with their use. Results: The gold particle fiducials could be easily distinguished from high-density structures, such as the pelvic bone, in diagnostic X-rays but were nearly transparent to a proton beam. The proton dose distribution was distorted <5% by the gold particle fiducials with a 4.9% normalized gold density; this was the case even in the worst configuration (i.e., parallel alignment with a single-direction proton beam). In addition, CT artifacts were dramatically reduced for the gold particle mixture. Conclusion: Mixtures of microscopic gold particles and human-compatible polymers have excellent potential as fiducial markers for proton therapy for prostate cancer. These include good radiographic visibility, low distortion of the depth-dose distribution, and few CT artifacts.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1609-1616
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology Physics
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2009 Aug 1
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study was supported by research Grant Nos. 0601230 and 0810210 from the National Cancer Center, Korea.


  • Fiducial marker
  • Gold particle
  • Prostate cancer
  • Proton therapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiation
  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cancer Research


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