CHENNAI: The Atomic Energy Regulatory Board (AERB) has issued the country’s first license to Apollo Hospitals, Chennai, to operate its proton therapy facility for treating cancer patients.
The proton therapy facility, Proteus 235, is the first of its kind in India and South-East Asia. There are about 78 such facilities operating all over the world.
“The license is issued to Apollo Hospital for treatment of cancer patients with proton beam of 226 MeV from radiation safety view point,” A U Sonawane, head of the board, stated.
He said, “AERB has given license to around 475 medical institutions to use radio therapy equipment, either gamma radiation-based tele-cobalt units or are X-ray-based linear accelerators.”
Proton beam therapy uses a beam of protons to irradiate diseased tissue, most often in the treatment of cancer, the official pointed out.
“The proton beam is specifically beneficial in treating pediatric cancers and deep-seated tumors more effectively than the conventional Gamma/X-ray radiation therapy,” the board observed.
The AERB ‘License for Operation’ for the proton therapy facility was issued after approval at each stage i.e. designs, layout, construction and commissioning of the facility. The approximate cost of proton radiation facility is about Rs 500 crore, an official release from the regulatory board stated.