The goal of this study was to develop a semi-automated prediction approach of target shifts using machine learning architecture (MLA) with anatomical features for prostate radiotherapy. Our hypothesis was that anatomical features between planning computed tomography (pCT) and pretreatment cone-beam computed tomography (CBCT) images could be used to predict the target, i.e. clinical target volume (CTV) shifts, with small errors. The pCT and daily CBCT images of 20 patients with prostate cancer were selected. The first 10 patients were employed for the development, and the second 10 patients for a validation test. The CTV position errors between the pCT and CBCT images were determined as reference CTV shifts (teacher data) after an automated bone-based registration. The anatomical features associated with rectum, bladder and prostate were calculated from the pCT and CBCT images. The features were fed as the input with the teacher data into five MLAs, i.e. three types of artificial neural networks, support vector regression (SVR) and random forests. Since the CTV shifts along the left-right direction were negligible, the MLAs were developed along the superior-inferior and anterior-posterior directions. The proposed framework was evaluated from the residual errors between the reference and predicted CTV shifts. In the validation test, the mean residual error with its standard deviation was 1.01 ± 1.09 mm in SVR using only one feature (one click), which was associated with positional difference of the upper rectal wall. The results suggested that MLAs with anatomical features could be useful in prediction of CTV shifts for prostate radiotherapy.
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