Cheryl Diaz Meyer
FILE - Senator Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, speaks to a Deseret News reporter from his personal office in the Hart Building on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., Monday, October 22, 2018. The Huntsman Cancer Institute's proton therapy center will be named in honor of Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, who will retire after 42 years of service in the U.S. Senate.

SALT LAKE CITY — The Huntsman Cancer Institute's proton therapy center will be named in honor of Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah.

The University of Utah board of trustees on Tuesday approved a $10 million gift from the Huntsman Cancer Foundation to name the center after Hatch, who is retiring from the U.S. Senate after 42 year of service.

Proton therapy is a type of radiation treatment that uses beams of radiation to shrink tumors, which minimizes radiation damage to healthy tissue.

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The intensity modulated proton therapy center will be located at the south end of the Huntsman Cancer Hospital, on the U. campus. The center is expected to open in 2020 and serve roughly 200 patients each year, according to a 2017 Huntsman Cancer Institute news release.

The nearest proton centers to Salt Lake City are in southern Arizona and central California. Patients who undergo proton therapy may need treatment five days a week over one or two months, according to the release.

The institute refers more than 40 patients annually to proton therapy centers out of state, the release said.