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Unterrainer, M.; Eze, C.; Ilhan, H.; Marschner, S.; Roengvoraphoj, O.; Schmidt-Hegemann, N. S.; Walter, F.; Kunz, W. G.; Munck af Rosenschold, P.; Jeraj, R.; Albert, Nathalie L. ORCID: 0000-0003-0953-7624; Grosu, A. L.; Niyazi, M.; Bartenstein, P.; Belka, C. (2020): Recent advances of PET imaging in clinical radiation oncology. In: Radiation Oncology, Vol. 15, No. 1, 88
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Radiotherapy and radiation oncology play a key role in the clinical management of patients suffering from oncological diseases. In clinical routine, anatomic imaging such as contrast-enhanced CT and MRI are widely available and are usually used to improve the target volume delineation for subsequent radiotherapy. Moreover, these modalities are also used for treatment monitoring after radiotherapy. However, some diagnostic questions cannot be sufficiently addressed by the mere use standard morphological imaging. Therefore, positron emission tomography (PET) imaging gains increasing clinical significance in the management of oncological patients undergoing radiotherapy, as PET allows the visualization and quantification of tumoral features on a molecular level beyond the mere morphological extent shown by conventional imaging, such as tumor metabolism or receptor expression. The tumor metabolism or receptor expression information derived from PET can be used as tool for visualization of tumor extent, for assessing response during and after therapy, for prediction of patterns of failure and for definition of the volume in need of dose-escalation. This review focuses on recent and current advances of PET imaging within the field of clinical radiotherapy / radiation oncology in several oncological entities (neuro-oncology, head & neck cancer, lung cancer, gastrointestinal tumors and prostate cancer) with particular emphasis on radiotherapy planning, response assessment after radiotherapy and prognostication.