Proton therapy (PT) is the use of protons (rather than X-ray or gamma radiation) for the radiological treatment of cancer. It has strong advantages over other types of treatment in certain cancers, such as brain cancers, where current 5-year survival rates are very low (~20%).
It can also reduce or eliminate the need for chemotherapy with its associated devastating side-effects, and in some cases (such as eye cancers and prostate cancer) provide a cure without the loss of function (loss of sight, impotence) caused by surgery. The advantages of proton therapy have been known for a long time, but it is still not widely used, in part due to the previously high cost of building the large and complex particle accelerators necessary. We want to help make sure proton therapy is available to anyone who needs it.