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What is proton therapy?

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Quick Answer

Proton therapy is a treatment, most often used for cancer, that targets a beam of protons at diseased tissue. Proton therapy allows the dose to be localized much more precisely than is possible with other forms of radiation treatment, as noted by The National Association for Proton Therapy.

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Full Answer

Proton therapy involves a stream of positively charged protons entering targeted tissue, such as cancerous tumors. When the positively charged particles come in contact with cells, they draw away negatively charged electrons. This causes disruption to the molecules of the cells, especially to genetic material and DNA. In the case of cancerous cells, it frequently causes irreparable damage, as cancer cells have an inferior capacity to repair themselves.

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