Utility of Multi-Parametric Quantitative Magnetic Resonance Imaging for Characterization and Radiotherapy Response Assessment in Soft-Tissue Sarcomas and Correlation With Histopathology.
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<b>Purpose:</b> To evaluate repeatability of quantitative multi-parametric MRI in retroperitoneal sarcomas, assess parameter changes with radiotherapy, and correlate pre-operative values with histopathological findings in the surgical specimens. <b>Materials and Methods:</b> Thirty patients with retroperitoneal sarcoma were imaged at baseline, of whom 27 also underwent a second baseline examination for repeatability assessment. 14/30 patients were treated with pre-operative radiotherapy and were imaged again after completing radiotherapy (50.4 Gy in 28 daily fractions, over 5.5 weeks). The following parameter estimates were assessed in the whole tumor volume at baseline and following radiotherapy: apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC), parameters of the intra-voxel incoherent motion model of diffusion-weighted MRI (D, <i>f</i>, D<sup>*</sup>), transverse relaxation rate, fat fraction, and enhancing fraction after gadolinium-based contrast injection. Correlation was evaluated between pre-operative quantitative parameters and histopathological assessments of cellularity and fat fraction in post-surgical specimens (ClinicalTrials.gov, registration number NCT01902667). <b>Results:</b> Upper and lower 95% limits of agreement were 7.1 and -6.6%, respectively for median ADC at baseline. Median ADC increased significantly post-radiotherapy. Pre-operative ADC and D were negatively correlated with cellularity (<i>r</i> = -0.42, <i>p</i> = 0.01, 95% confidence interval (CI) -0.22 to -0.59 for ADC; <i>r</i> = -0.45, <i>p</i> = 0.005, 95% CI -0.25 to -0.62 for D), and fat fraction from Dixon MRI showed strong correlation with histopathological assessment of fat fraction (<i>r</i> = 0.79, <i>p</i> = 10<sup>-7</sup>, 95% CI 0.69-0.86). <b>Conclusion:</b> Fat fraction on MRI corresponded to fat content on histology and therefore contributes to lesion characterization. Measurement repeatability was excellent for ADC; this parameter increased significantly post-radiotherapy even in disease categorized as stable by size criteria, and corresponded to cellularity on histology. ADC can be utilized for characterizing and assessing response in heterogeneous retroperitoneal sarcomas.
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Sarcoma and Melanoma Surgery
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Frontiers in oncology, 2019, 9 pp. 280 - ?