ASTRO (American Society for Radiation Oncology)

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ASTRO (the American Society for Radiation Oncology) is a leading[1] professional association in radiation oncology that is dedicated to improving patient care through professional education and training, support for clinical practice and health policy standards, advancement of science and research, and advocacy. ASTRO has a membership of more than 10,000 members covering a range of professions including Radiation Oncologist, Radiation Therapists, Medical Dosimetrists Medical Physicists, Radiation Oncology Nurses and Radiation Biologists.


The organization began in 1958 as the American Club of Therapeutic Radiologists.[2] In 1966 it became the American Society for Therapeutic Radiologists (ASTR).[2] In 1983 it became ASTRO (the American Society for Therapeutic Radiology and Oncology).[2] In 2008 it became ASTRO (the American Society for Radiation Oncology), keeping the acronym ASTRO while redefining its expansion.[2] The members decided that the term "therapeutic radiology" was outdated and confusing to a general audience and that the new name would better reflect the specialty.[2]


ASTRO publishes a weekly electronic newsletter called the ASTROgram and a quarterly magazine called the ASTROnews. Through its Communications Committee, it also publishes more than a dozen brochures for patients in English, Spanish, Arabic and Japanese explaining how radiation therapy is safely and effectively used to treat cancer and other diseases. Additionally ASTRO offers educational information for cancer patients, their family members and caregivers on

ASTRO publishes the International Journal of Radiation*Oncology*Biology*Physics (Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys), also known as the Red Journal, 15 times each year. It is edited by Anthony Zietman, MD, FASTRO, who took over from James D Cox, MD, in 2012. Senior editors are Thomas A. Buchholz, MD, Martin Brown, PhD, FASTRO, Theodore L DeWeese, MD, FASTRO, Robert L Foote, MD, FASTRO, Eric E Klein, PhD, Helen Shih, MD, Mitchell Machtay, MD, Arno J Mundt, MD, FASTRO, and Christopher Willett, MD, FASTRO. The Red Journal boasts an impact factor of more than 4.1 and is considered the leading journal in radiation oncology. Under the new editorial leadership, the acceptance rate has dropped to about 20 percent. However, authors can also expect to hear about the disposition of their paper in about a month and the time from acceptance to print publication has dropped to about 6 months.

Beginning in 2011, ASTRO began publishing Practical Radiation Oncology. Also called PRO, it is a quarterly journal whose mission is to improve the quality of radiation oncology practice. This journal is a natural complement to the Red Journal and aims to be what Medline defines as a clinical or practice journal. These types of journals have as their dominant purpose either documenting the state of current practice, providing background for those in training or the continuing education of practitioners. The journal is edited by W. Robert Lee, MD, MS, MEd, of Duke University. The journal will expand to publication six times per year in 2014.


  1. ^ ASTRO Changes Name To American Society For Radiation Oncology
  2. ^ a b c d e ASTRO, history page, retrieved 2013-10-31. 

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