Proton beam therapy

  • IASbaba
  • March 3, 2023
  • 0
Science and Technology
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Context: Recent studies talk about the inaccessibility of Proton beam therapy for many with cancer.

About Proton beam therapy treatment:

  • Proton therapy is a type of radiation therapy, that uses high-powered energy to treat cancer and some noncancerous tumors.
  • Proton therapy is a newer type of radiation therapy that uses energy from positively charged particles (protons).
  • Proton therapy has shown promise in treating several kinds of cancer.
  • It may cause fewer side effects than traditional radiation since doctors can better control where the proton beams deliver their energy.
  • Proton therapy accurately targets very specific locations, which may result in less damage to surrounding tissues while conventional radiation therapy is less targeted, and more “normal” cells in the region of a tumor may be damaged.
  • Proton beam therapy is not one single type of treatment, but rather there are different types and methods.

Advantages :

  • Precise delivery with less long-term damage
  • It may allow a ‘Higher Radiation Dose’
  • It causes less damage to surrounding tissues and fewer long-term risks
  • Proton Beams are easier to control
  • It can be well tolerated
  • It can be used for inoperable Tumors


  • It may miss cancer outside the radiation field.
  • At the current time, proton beam therapy is roughly twice as expensive as conventional radiation therapy.
  • Challenges with proton therapy include motion management and changes in anatomy that take place before and during treatment.11
  • Limited availability  of proton beam therapy centers.

Applications: Proton therapy is sometimes used to treat: Brain tumors, various cancer types including breast cancer, Lymphoma, Pituitary gland tumors etc.


Previous Year Questions

Q.1. Which one of the following statements best describes the role of B cells and T cells in the human body? (2022)

  1. They protect the environmental allergens. body
  2. They alleviate the body’s pain and inflammation.
  3. They act as immunosuppressants in the body.
  4. They protect the body from diseases caused by pathogens.

Q.2.  In the context of hereditary diseases, consider the following statements: (2021)

  1. Passing on mitochondrial diseases from parent to child can be prevented by mitochondrial replacement therapy either before or after in vitro fertilization of the egg.
  2. A child inherits mitochondrial diseases entirely from the mother and not from the father.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

  1. 1 only
  2. 2 only
  3. Both 1 and 2
  4. Neither 1 nor 2

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