BNCT is a radiation therapy that uses boron carrier compounds in a neutron-induced nuclear reaction to selectively target tumor cells while sparing the surrounding normal tissue. BNCT consists of two separate components, a boron-10 target drug and a neutron beam source. First, the boron-10 target drug, administered by intravenous injection, selectively accumulates in tumor cells. Next, the patient is irradiated with a therapeutic neutron beam of appropriate energy, creating nuclear capture and fission reactions that destroy targeted tumor cells with minimal effect on the surrounding normal cells. BNCT is therefore a modern cellular-level targeted radiotherapy.

History of BNCT

In 1936, the principle of BNCT was firstly proposed by Locher based on the selective concentration of boron in tumors and its irradiation by thermal neutron. The first clinical research of BNCT in a patient with malignant glioma was performed in Massachusetts General Hospital using The Brookhaven Graphite Research Reactor in 1951. In 1968, Hatanaka reported positive results of clinical trials of BNCT in Japan, which effectively cured the patients with brain tumors. In addition to Japan, the United States, Europe, the Netherlands, Finland, Italy, Sweden and Argentina have been involved diversly in research and clinical treatment.

Current worldwide situation for BNCT

BNCT treatment have been performed at several research reactor around the world, however it's very difficult for a reactor to be licensed as clinical instrument. Dr. Yeh has led IPT's top-of-the-line research and medical team to develop the cutting edge technology of the accelerator for BNCT. IPT's BNCT system is equipped with a world-leading compact linear accelerator which is a breakthrough in size, significantly reducing the space required for the BNCT treatment center, and can be installed in the hospital. IPT's in-house stable and reliable intense neutron beams provides the shorter BNCT session and lower radiation exposure which benefits the BNCT center to be more environmentally friendly and easier to maintain and control. IPT's BNCT center offers the highest quality of precision radiotherapy for cancer patients.

Near 2,000 patients have been treated by BNCT and had favorable clinical outcomes for glioblastomas, head and neck, and other challenging cancers. Today we are witnessing a surge in the BNCT development and the clinical research based on the use of accelerators. With the popularity of BNCT equipment that can be installed in hospitals, BNCT is becoming the mainstream of cancer therapy.