In this study we have investigated a spatial distribution of cell growth after their irradiation using a modulated x-ray intensity pattern. An A549 human non-small cell lung cancer cell line was grown in a 6-well culture. Two of the wells were the unirradiated control wells, whilst another two wells were irradiated with a modulated x-ray intensity pattern and the third two wells were uniformly irradiated. A number of plates were incubated for various times after irradiation and stained with crystal violet. The spatial distribution of the stained cells within each well was determined by measurement of the crystal violet optical density at multiple positions in the plate using a microplate photospectrometer. The crystal violet optical density for a range of cell densities was measured for the unirradiated well and this correlated with cell viability as determined by the MTT cell viability assay. An exponential dose response curve was measured for A549 cells from the average crystal violet optical density in the uniformly irradiated well up to a dose of 30 Gy. By measuring the crystal violet optical density distribution within a well the spatial distribution of cell growth after irradiation with a modulated x-ray intensity pattern can be plotted. This method can be used for in vitro investigation into the changes in radiation response associated with treatment using intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT).