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Particle Therapy and ion fragmentation: A phenomenon that is both a resource and an hinder.
Particle Therapy (PT) performed with ions (predominantly C, while He and O are being considered) can exploit the full power of enhanced RBE and OER (Oxygen Enhancement Ratio) at the cost of keeping under control the fragmentation produced by the beam interaction with the patient tissues. A precise knowledge of the fragmentation occurring both for the projectile particles and in the target nuclei is of paramount importance for planning the treatments and to develop the, currently missing, devices capable of dose release in-treatment online monitoring. Overview and perspectives of fragmentation studies for PT applications will be discussed.