Current radiotherapy techniques in NSCLC: challenges and potential solutions

Niccolò Giaj-Levra, Paolo Borghetti, Alessio Bruni, Patrizia Ciammella, Francesco Cuccia, Alessandra Fozza, Davide Franceschini, Vieri Scotti, Stefano Vagge, Filippo Alongi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction: Radiotherapy is an important therapeutic strategy in the management of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). In recent decades, technological implementations and the introduction of image guided radiotherapy (IGRT) have significantly increased the accuracy and tolerability of radiation therapy.Area covered: In this review, we provide an overview of technological opportunities and future prospects in NSCLC management.Expert opinion: Stereotactic body radiotherapy (SBRT) is now considered the standard approach in patients ineligible for surgery, while in operable cases, it is still under debate. Additionally, in combination with systemic treatment, SBRT is an innovative option for managing oligometastatic patients and features encouraging initial results in clinical outcomes. To date, in inoperable locally advanced NSCLC, the radical dose prescription has not changed (60 Gy in 30 fractions), despite the median overall survival progressively increasing. These results arise from technological improvements in precisely hitting target treatment volumes and organ at risk sparing, which are associated with better treatment qualities. Finally, for the management of NSCLC, proton and carbon ion therapies and the recent development of MR-Linac are new, intriguing technological approaches under investigation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)387-402
Number of pages16
JournalExpert Review of Anticancer Therapy
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2020


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