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Justin Mikell - PhD Research

Justin Mikell

B.S., 2002, Physics, University of Illinois - Urbana-Champaign
B.S., 2002, Computer Science - University of Illinois - Urbana-Champaign 

Project: Internal Radionuclide Dose Calculation Using Deterministic Radiation Transport Methods

My research interests are in applying Monte Carlo (stochastic) and Discrete Ordinates (deterministic) codes to clinical radiotherapy.  Both sealed source brachytherapy and unsealed source therapeutic nuclear medicine are current areas of interest, and my proposed dissertation work focuses on the latter.  My work will involve creating and benchmarking an experimental treatment planning system for targeted radionuclide therapy that will 1) include various dose calculation methods and 2) generating uncertainties for both voxels and regions of interest.  The uncertainties will be specific to the patient, radiopharmaceutical, dose calculation method, and gamma camera, SPECT/CT, or PET/CT used to image activity.  3D Serial imaging  will also be included to account for dose rate effects and calculations of biological effective doses with corresponding uncertainties. The desired end result is to have patient specific TRT treatment planning that provides maps of both the dose and uncertainty in a clinically acceptable amount of time.  The work will also allow more refined dose response studies for new radiopharmaceuticals in clinical trials and traditional TRT studies.  Another benefit would be the combining of TRT with more traditional radiotherapy modalities.

Advisor: Firas Mourtada, Ph.D. 
Career Goal: Research, industry and clinical practice

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