TFY4315 - Biophysics of Ionizing Radiation


Lessons are not given in the academic year 2022/2023

Course content

This course gives an introduction to the deposition of energy from ionizing radiation in biologic materials. Topics presented includes direct and indirect radiation effects, radiation-induced DNA damage and –repair, mechanisms of cell death following radiation, quantitative models of cell kill and cell survival, dose-response relationships, tumor and normal tissue responses to radiation, main principles for use of ionizing radiation in cancer therapy, the 5 R's of fractionation, time-dose fractionation, therapeutic ratio, the linear-quadratic model, tumor control probability and normal tissue complication probability models, the dose-rate effect, the volume effect, the oxygen effect, tumor microenvironment and hypoxia, combination of radiotherapy with chemotherapy and molecularly targeted agents, sensitizing and protective agents, hyperthermia, proton and ion therapy.

Learning outcome

Knowledge the candidate should have knowledge about: - The interaction of ionizing radiation with biological materials. - Mechanisms behind the induction and repair of radiation-induced molecular and cellular effects. - The use of ionizing radiation in cancer therapy. Skills the candidate should be able to: - The use of various mathematical models for the estimation of cell kill and cell survival after irradiation of ionizing radiation. General competence the candidate should be able to: - Interpretation and presentation of scientific data obtained during the practical work in the laboratory, computer simulations and group work. - Reading and presenting research literature.

Learning methods and activities

Lectures, compulsory laboratory exercises/demonstrations, and compulsory project work in groups with presentation. Teaching will be in English if students on international master programs are attending the course. Expected work load in the course is 225 hours.

Compulsory assignments

  • Project with presentation
  • Laboratory exercises

Further on evaluation

Evaluation is made based on a final written (digital) exam (100%). The re-sit examination (in August) may be changed from written to oral.

Specific conditions

Compulsory activities from previous semester may be approved by the department.

Course materials

To be announced at the start of the semester.

Credit reductions

Course code Reduction From To
SIF4092 7.5
FY8919 7.5 AUTUMN 2017
More on the course



Version: 1
Credits:  7.5 SP
Study level: Second degree level



Language of instruction: English

Location: Trondheim

Subject area(s)
  • Biophysics and Medical Technology
  • Physics
Contact information

Department with academic responsibility
Department of Physics


  • * The location (room) for a written examination is published 3 days before examination date. If more than one room is listed, you will find your room at Studentweb.

For more information regarding registration for examination and examination procedures, see "Innsida - Exams"

More on examinations at NTNU