Ready for Transfer

Argonne’s Endoscopic Electron Beam Cancer Therapy

Dept. of Energy

Laboratory: Argonne National Laboratory

Technology: Endoscopic Electron Beam Cancer Therapy

Opportunity: Currently in its prototype stage, Argonne’s endoscopic electron beam cancer therapy technology is available for licensing to interested parties.

Details: By delivering large irradiation doses in a short time, electron beams have proven to be very effective in cancer treatment. But the electron is also strongly absorbed by tissue, limiting this treatment to surface cancers and procedures that require large surgical incisions to expose the body core.

Researchers at Argonne National Laboratory, led by John Noonan, have discovered a way to turn the negative attributes of electron beam cancer therapy into advantages. If the electron beam can be transported to the internal cancer without exposure to tissue, the beam can be absorbed by the tumor only. With this approach, healthy tissue is not exposed to radiation.

Manipulating electron beam cancer therapy so it can be used treat internal cancers and tumors has the potential to revolutionize oncology. This ground-breaking innovation can provide a successful and cost-effective means of treating cancer in previously inoperable or radiation-sensitive areas of the body.


  • The electron beam can be tailored to irradiate a very precise volume, so an oncologist can direct the irradiation at the tumor and whatever adjacent tissue they feel necessary.
  • Electron beams may potentially require only one session, significantly improving patient care compared to longer treatment time under X-rays.
  • The electron beam system is compact so it could fit in an operating room.
  • The production cost of the unit should be much less than that of existing radiation therapy systems.

Applications: This technology is applicable as a medical device for the medical industry.

Contact: For more information about this technology, contact Argonne’s Technology Development & Commercialization office at

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