Medical Physics 2

Course content

Medical imaging:

Medical imaging informatics

CT imaging: Back projection algorithms, scatter correction algorithms etc.

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Basic physical principle behind magnetic resonance, image formation and  the possibility to distinguish between different tissues – combination with other diagnostic tools.

Physical principles behind Positron Emission Tomography (PET). Applications with metabolic markers like FDG. Production of nuclear tracers

Physical principles behind radiation dose planning. Boltzmann’s energy transport in tissue.

Advanced dose calculation exercise

Cancer biology and side effects.

Estimation of risk of toxicity based on a given radiation dose distribution in a normal tissue in the vicinity of a tumor. Methodology for generating outcome prediction models from clinical data. Connection with linear-quadratic model of biological effect. Therapeutic issues related to hypxia or other types of tumor resistance.


The student will choose a theoretical or experimental project which will be based on one or several topics which are covered in week 1 through 6 of the course. The chosen project will have a duration that covers the last 1.5 weeks of the course and the written report should be at most 5 A4 pages with possible appendices including data/code or supplementary figures. A maximum of 2 students per project is allowed (and encouraged).


MSc Programme in Physics

Learning outcome


  • Explain the basic physical principles behind the diagnostic tools, CT, MRI and PET.
  • Explain how the different medical imaging modalities can visualize different aspects of tissue.
  • Describe the physics behind dose planning and energy transport in tissue and apply this knowledge to perform theoretical dose calculations with the appropriate software.
  • Explain the biology of tumor growth the relevance of angiogenesis, hypoxia and metastatic potential
  • Describe basic statistical methods used to assess the effect of radiation with respect to tumor control and toxicity.
  • Demonstrate the use of models for quantifying radiation induced damage to irradiated tissue.

The student knows how different medical images of the human anatomy and physiology such as CT, MRI and PET are produced and used to visualize e.g. tumors. Also, the student knows how the principles behind modern treatment planning systems of radiation dose and how to carry out simple dose plans and understand the principles of assessing the biological effect of a radiation dose plan. 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 and the data analytics methods used to quantify the effect of radiation on tissue.


Lectures and exercises

Will be announced on Absalon

It is recommended that the students have some prior knowledge of medical radiation physics. Knowledge of programming in Matlab is recommended.

7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Written assignment, 1.5 weeks
Oral examination, 25 minutes
Written report based on the theoretical or experimental exercise chosen by the student, cf. content/project.

The final grading will be focused on the 25 minutes oral examination (without preparation time) with weight on the written report. The oral reporting of the selected assignment will be expected to fill a substantial part of the oral presentation by the student, but knowledge of the course content will also be assessed at the oral exam and 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