NCI-DOE Collaboration Radiation Oncology Workshops (Overview)

Join Four Interactive, Multidisciplinary Workshops + a World Café* to help shape a “Blue-Sky” vision for the future of Radiation Oncology!


Since 2016, the National Cancer Institute (NCI) and the Department of Energy (DOE) have been collaborating in the Joint Design of Advanced Computing Solutions for Cancer (JDACS4C) program whose mission is to simultaneously accelerate advances in predictive oncology and computing.

A multidisciplinary Envisioning Computational Innovations for Cancer (ECICC) community arose from that collaboration and produced a report of the first meeting in March 2019. Participants identified aspirational cancer challenges that require shared efforts across cancer research, artificial intelligence, and advanced computing technologies.

This workshop series will build on this experience to explore multidisciplinary approaches and envision a bold, actionable path for radiation oncology that creates new paradigms for cancer research and provides more precise treatment for patients.

Purpose of the Workshop Series

Explore emerging and futuristic opportunities among DOE, NCI and partner institutions to advance radiation therapy. Essential components include:

  • Personalized, adaptive, improved treatment through understanding and development of mechanism-based, computationally enabled modeling
  • Advanced computing to achieve dynamic, multiscale, data-informed, clinically actionable predictions and decision making

Anticipated Outcomes

  • Creation of scope and goals for potential new NCI-DOE Collaboration projects
  • Development of a multi-institutional report with a visionary perspective
  • Opportunities to engage and colloborate with cross-domain researchers and clinicians

The Challenge – Why Radiation Oncology and Why Now?

Radiation oncology is an area of cancer care that employs rich four-dimensional (4D) data to design and deliver highly personalized and technologically advanced treatments. Emerging approaches in physics, AI, advanced computing and mathematical modeling can be informed by the growing wealth of 4D data. New synergies can be created to predict response at various time scales and thereby support new treatment strategies with the potential for direct translation to the radiation oncology clinic.   

The typical course of radiation treatment for cancer patients takes between one day and 8 weeks. This timespan creates opportunities to analyze dynamic changes and anticipate adaptive processes in cancer cells (e.g., radiation resistance) or to identify sensitivities of normal tissues to radiation damage.

Development of personalized, predictive models for these events enables adaptive, fine-tuned treatment and offers capabilities to leverage potentially vast amounts of diverse data to improve outcomes. The range of data includes areas such as circulating biomaterials, quantitative 3D imaging, and patient-reported outcomes. 

Innovative multidisciplinary approaches that leverage advances in computing and measurement offer tremendous, untapped potential to shape the future of radiation treatments and oncology in general.

Moreover, radiation oncology clinical practice translates to many other areas of scientific discovery and societal impact. These include drug development, surgical practice, patient survivorship research, prevention of late effects, aeronautics and space travel, radiation safety, radiation biology, mitigation of radiation events, and disaster management.

This workshop series offers an opportunity to determine a roadmap for cutting-edge, multidisciplinary research that will drive development of new paradigms in radiation oncology.

Who should attend?

  • U.S. and international researchers and clinicians at all levels of seniority with diverse expertise across the continuum of cancer research, radiology, artificial intelligence, scientific computing, data science, biomedical engineering, bioinformatics, physics and mathematical modeling—including mechanistic, data-driven and multi-scale modeling
  • People who are passionate about accelerating cancer research and excited about exploring how emerging technology can advance radiation oncology and precision cancer medicine

Questions? Contact
Location: Virtual, no need to travel and no fee to participate!

A World Café is a discussion format for a challenge or vision that calls for a broad range of disciplines (or diverse set of stakeholders) to all contribute to a vision or plan. A World Café groups each of these stakeholder groups or disciplines together, and then rotates the topic moderators around to each group to consult with each group, developing the vision or plan in an iterative fashion.