Medical Physics 2

Course content

Cancer biology and side effects

  • Cancer cell biology, advanced radiobiology, therapeutic issues related to hypoxia in tumors, the development of tumors during radiation fractions. Interaction between tumors with surrounding tissue and different hallmarks of cancer growth.
  • Statistics of different treatment modalities with respect to recurrence of cancer
  • Damage to surrounding organs. Anatomy and physiology of surrounding organs - models for describing damage.


Diagnostic imaging

  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Basic physical principle behind magnetic resonance
  • Magnetic Resonance diagnostics, a key modality in medicine- the possibility to distinguish between different tissues – combination with other diagnostic tools.
  • CT imaging: Back projection algorithms, scatter correction algorithms etc. Dose measurement from CBCT
  • Physical principles behind Positron Emission Tomography (PET). Applications with metabolic markers like FDG.
  • Production of nuclear tracers


Radiation planning

  • Physical principles behind radiation dose planning. Boltzmann’s energy transport in tissue.
  • Advanced dose calculation theoretical exercise



The student will choose a theoretical or experimental project which will be based on one or several topics which are included in the course.
The chosen exercise will cover at least a 1.5 weeks of the course and the written report should be at most 5 A4 pages with possible appendices with data/code or supplementary figures.


M.Sc. Physics

Learning outcome

After completing the course, the student receiving the top grade should be able to:

  • Explain the biology of tumor growth and the development of angiogenesis, hypoxia and how metastatic cell growth differs from non-metastatic cell growth
  • Describe the statistics behind cancer survival in relation to different treatment modalities
  • Apply models for quantifying radiation inflicted damage to surroundings organs
  • Explain the basic physical principles behind the diagnostic tools, PET and MRI
  • Perform theoretical dose calculations
  • Describe the physics behind dose planning and energy transport in tissue and apply this knowledge to perform theoretical dose calculations
  • Describe how nuclear tracers are produced


The student knows how magnetic resonance can be used in imaging of the human anatomy and physiology and in particular how MRI can be used as a diagnostic tool to detect e.g. tumors. Also, the student knows how cancer can be detected using PET to detect tumors with high metabolic activity. The course will give the student advanced insight into important subjects related to the work carried out by a medical physicist who is working with radiation oncology or diagnostics.

The course will provide the student with a basic knowledge for designing and performing simple imaging experiments and evaluate and explain the outcome of the experiments. The course will provide the student with a basic knowledge regarding the physical mechanism behind advanced imaging techniques which are used extensively at Danish hospitals and research centers. Finally, the student will have general insight into the biology of cancer tumors and the side effects that occur in irradiated healthy tissue.

Lectures and exercises

Will be announced later

It is recommended that the students have followed the courses "Medicinsk Fysik 1" and "Radioactive Isotopes and Ionizing Radiation"

7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Written assignment
Oral examination, 25 minutes
Written report based on the theoretical or experimental exercise chosen by the student, cf. content/exercises.

The final grading will be focused on the 25 minutes oral examination with limited (~20%) weight on the written report. However, the oral reporting of the selected assignment will be expected to fill a substantial part of the oral presentation by the student and will be be important for the final grade.
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
No external censorship
several internal examiners
Criteria for exam assessment

See Learning Outcome

Single subject courses (day)

  • Category
  • Hours
  • Lectures
  • 28
  • Theory exercises
  • 34
  • Project work
  • 80
  • Preparation
  • 64
  • English
  • 206