Atlas-guided prostate intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) planning

Yang Sheng, Taoran Li, You Zhang, W. Robert Lee, Fang Fang Yin, Yaorong Ge, Q. Jackie Wu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


An atlas-based IMRT planning technique for prostate cancer was developed and evaluated. A multi-dose atlas was built based on the anatomy patterns of the patients, more specifically, the percent distance to the prostate and the concaveness angle formed by the seminal vesicles relative to the anterior-posterior axis. A 70-case dataset was classified using a k-medoids clustering analysis to recognize anatomy pattern variations in the dataset. The best classification, defined by the number of classes or medoids, was determined by the largest value of the average silhouette width. Reference plans from each class formed a multi-dose atlas. The atlas-guided planning (AGP) technique started with matching the new case anatomy pattern to one of the reference cases in the atlas; then a deformable registration between the atlas and new case anatomies transferred the dose from the atlas to the new case to guide inverse planning with full automation. 20 additional clinical cases were re-planned to evaluate the AGP technique. Dosimetric properties between AGP and clinical plans were evaluated. The classification analysis determined that the 5-case atlas would best represent anatomy patterns for the patient cohort. AGP took approximately 1 min on average (corresponding to 70 iterations of optimization) for all cases. When dosimetric parameters were compared, the differences between AGP and clinical plans were less than 3.5%, albeit some statistical significances observed: homogeneity index (p > 0.05), conformity index (p < 0.01), bladder gEUD (p < 0.01), and rectum gEUD (p = 0.02). Atlas-guided treatment planning is feasible and efficient. Atlas predicted dose can effectively guide the optimizer to achieve plan quality comparable to that of clinical plans.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)7277-7291
Number of pages15
JournalPhysics in medicine and biology
Issue number18
StatePublished - Sep 21 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • IMRT
  • atlas
  • pattern recognition
  • prostate cancer

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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