Post-doc fellow: Clinical Control Infrastructure for Proton Therapy Treatments

University of Groningen

Department Radiotherapie –
Work location Groningen
Apply no later than 06 December 2021
Working environment

Within the Department of Radiation Oncology of the University Medical Center Groningen (UMCG), Groningen, the Netherlands, we are looking for a motivated and ambitious PhD graduate to join our effort to realize a Clinical Control Infrastructure for Proton Therapy Treatments, suported in part by the Dutch Cancer Society Grant 11518- INCONTROL. Two Phd students, MS students, physicists and programmers have been working on this project for the past 3 years in collaboration with academic and industrial partners. The successful candidate will be part of the Medical Physics group, which consists of over 20 physicists, several PhD-students, post-doctoral fellow, physics assistants, engineers and programmers, within the Medical Physics and Instrumentation Division of the Department of Radiation Oncology.

UMCG Department of Radiation Oncology
The Department of Radiation Oncology in the UMCG is the first academic department in the Netherlands with an integrated state of the art photon-proton clinic. Currently, radiotherapy treatments are provided for over 4,500 patients annually. The UMCG Department of Radiation Oncology has strong national and international track records in innovation; academic and industry grant funded research. It is a world leader pioneering and leading the development of the model-based clinic to predict cancer treatment outcomes, facilitate biological guided treatment and automated patient treatment dose reconstruction in proton therapy based on patient data, including imaging at the Groningen Proton Therapy Center (GPTC). Basic physics and biology research takes place at the Particle Therapy Research Center (PARTREC) in the area of PET imaging for in vivo range verification using short lived isotopes and biology of radiation induced damaged in normal tissues and tumors. PARTREC and GPTC are uniquely integrated in the UMCG Department of Radiation Oncology to facilitate all aspects of research, from bench to bed and back, allowing for rapid development and clinical integration of new technologies.

The department is part of the UMC Groningen Comprehensive Cancer Center, with 21 multidisciplinary tumor boards and provides the highest level of oncologic services, being actively involved in patient care, research, education, and training. The University Medical Centre Groningen, located in the center of Groningen, is one of the Netherlands’ eight university medical centers and the largest employer in the Northern Netherlands. It has an ambitious, dynamic, international environment with state-of-the-art facilities. More than 13.000 employees provide patient care, are involved in medical education, and perform cutting-edge scientific research, focused on healthy ageing. Data science and large-scale studies are important focal points in Groningen.

Job description

Patient, physics, biological and machine related uncertanties may compromise the accuracy of intensity modulated proton therapy treatments. Therefore end to end patient specific automated QC processes have to be delveloped in order to take full advantage of the physics of proton beams. In order to reduce these uncertanties, the UMCG is actively developing its fraction-wise 3D and 4D proton dose reconstruction methodology for treatment verification based on in-room daily patient treatment delivery log-files, breathing pattern recordings (ANZAI belt), surface signals (Vision Rt), synthethic imaging (CT) and proton radiography. The reconstructed and accumulated dose quality evaluation during and after treatment are employed to dynamicaly reconciliate planned and delivered dose throughout the treatment course, enabling the development of an effective workflow for adaptive rproton therapy.

The post-doctoral fellow will work together with the existing PhD students to bridge the gap between research and clinic to create integrated workflows towards clinical implementation in Head and Neck and Thorax cancer patients, in our model based clinic at the UMCG. The full clinical adoption of the methodology will be the topic of a subsequent phase of the project.

What do we need

  • A PhD degree on a topic related to radiotherapy or a related field.

  • MATLAB and/or Python programming/data analysis skills.

  • Experience with radiotherapy clinical workflows and QA processes.

  • Experience with medical image processing.

  • Some experience in deep learning.

  • Some knowledge on range verification.

  • Excellent communication skills.

  • Excellent spoken and written English language skills.

  • Motivation and ambition.

The applicants have to be able and willing to work in a radiation environment and should have or will need to quickly obtain the qualification that is required for this. Part of the work may have to be done outside the normal working hours.

The UMCG has a preventive Hepatitis B policy. The UMCG can provide you with the vaccination, should it be required for your position.

In case of specific professions a ‘Certificate of Good Conduct’ is required.

What do we offer

A stimulating and creative learning environment. A temporary fulltime (36 hours a week) post-doctoral fellow position a period of up to 2 years. The successful candidate will initially be offered a position for one year; with another 1 year extension conditional on a positive evaluation after 12 months.

Your salary will be a maximum of € 4.615 gross per month (scale 10), depending on your qualifications and relevant experience, based on a full-time appointment. In addition, the UMCG will offer you 8% holiday pay, and 8.3% end-of-year bonus. The conditions of employment comply with the Collective Labour Agreement for Medical Centres (CAO-UMC). Employees relocating from abroad may be eligible for the Dutch ‘30% ruling’, a tax advantage which results in a significantly higher net salary.

Applying for a job
Please use the digital application form at the bottom of this page – only these will be processed. The application form requires:

  • motivation letter;

  • CV (including educational and employment history, PhD studies, publication list etc.);

  • name and email address of at least two academic referees.

More information

For more information about this vacancy you may contact:

Applying for a job

Please use the the digital application form at the bottom of this page – only these will be processed. You can apply until 6 December 2021.
Within half an hour after sending the digital application form you will receive an email- confirmation with further information.

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