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Medical physics is a very well-established field where advances tend to be of technical nature. However, physicists from other areas of physics can make unexpected contributions. New ideas, technology transfer and interdisciplinary collaborations can lead to exciting developments. This collection gathers various news, review and opinion pieces highlighting and discussing such trends.
In positron emission tomography, up to 40% of positron annihilation occurs through the production of positronium atoms in the patient’s body, whose decay could provide information about disease progression. New research is needed to take full advantage of this information.
Each year millions of patients benefit from diagnostic services enabled by advances in medical imaging. However, some services rely on the supply of technetium-99m from an ageing nuclear infrastructure. Kevin Charlton discusses new technologies to secure a sustainable supply.
Jose R. Alonso and colleagues describe technical advances that will allow the proposed IsoDAR (isotope decay at rest) cyclotron — being developed for neutrino physics research — to produce many medical isotopes more efficiently than existing cyclotrons can.
This Review describes how acoustic cavitation can be used to improve the delivery of drugs for the treatment of diseases such as cancer and stroke. Methods for seeding cavitation, treatment monitoring, and current and future clinical applications are described.
The brain is the quintessential complex system, boasting incredible feats of cognition and supporting a wide range of behaviours. Physics has much to offer in the quest to distil the brain’s complexity to a number of cogent organizing principles.
Advances in semiconductor technologies have enabled the development of numerous designs of silicon tracking detectors in particle physics. This Technical Review outlines the current state-of-the-art technologies and discusses challenges, future directions and some of the recent applications outside particle physics.