Optimization for Cancer Radiation Treatment Planning

May 02, 2014, Broida 1640

Haitham Hindi


Every year, thousands of cancer patients are treated using Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy (IMRT). High energy X-ray beams are delivered to the patient from different directions, with millimeter precision, with the objective of maximizing dosage to the tumor, while minimizing damage to the surrounding healthy tissue. This talk is an introduction to the basic optimization problem underlying Radiation Treatment Planning. Specifically, we will review how the computation of beam directions and intensities in IMRT can be formulated as a convex optimization problem. We discuss the metrics and constraints used in IMRT, using methods from optimization, medical physics, and finance and risk management. We will also review some effective parallelizable methods that have been developed for solving this inherently large-scale, multi-objective optimization problem.

Speaker's Bio

Haitham Hindi received his MS and PhD from Stanford University in Electrical Engineering, and a BSc from Imperial College in Physics. His interests are in optimization and control, and their applicationto real-world problems. He is currently a principal engineer at Walmart Labs, working on optimization algorithms for online advertising and search engine marketing. Before that, he was at Accuray, Inc, a company which makes robotic cancer radiation treatment devices. His prior work was in: energy management systems; dynamic pricing; networked and hybrid control; printing, manufacturing, and transportation networks; nonlinear control systems; particle accelerators; and disk drives.

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