Effects From Nonuniform Dose Distribution in the Spinal Nerves of Pigs: Analysis of Normal Tissue Complication Probability Models

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Purpose: Our purpose was to evaluate normal tissue complication probability (NTCP) models for their ability to describe the increase in tolerance as the length of irradiated spinal nerve is reduced in a pig. Methods and Materials: Common phenomenological and semimechanistic NTCP models were fit using the maximum likelihood estimate method to dose-response data from spinal nerve irradiation studies in pigs. Statistical analysis was used to compare how well each model fit the data. Model parameters were then applied to a previously published dose distribution used for spinal cord irradiation in rats under the assumption of a similar dose-response. Results: The Lyman-Kutcher-Burman model, relative seriality, and critical volume model fit the spinal nerve data equally well, but the mean dose logistic and relative seriality models gave the best fit after penalizing for the number of model parameters. The minimum dose logistic regression model was the only model showing a lack of fit. When extrapolated to a 0.5-cm simulated square-wave–like dose distribution, the serial behaving models showed negligible increase in dose-response curve. The Lyman-Kutcher-Burman model and relative seriality models showed significant shifting of NTCP curves due to parallel behaving parameters. The critical volume model gave the closest match to the rat data. Conclusions: Several phenomenological and semimechanistic models were observed to adequately describe the increase in the radiation tolerance of the spinal nerves when changing the irradiated length from 1.5 to 0.5 cm. Contrary to common perception, model parameters suggest parallel behaving tissue architecture. Under the assumption that the spinal nerve response to radiation is similar to that of the spinal cord, only the critical volume model was robust when extrapolating to outcome data from a 0.5-cm square-wave–like dose distribution, as was delivered in rodent spinal cord irradiation research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1570-1579
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology Physics
Issue number5
StatePublished - Apr 1 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiation
  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cancer Research


Dive into the research topics of 'Effects From Nonuniform Dose Distribution in the Spinal Nerves of Pigs: Analysis of Normal Tissue Complication Probability Models'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this