A comparison of Ktrans measurements obtained with conventional and first pass pharmacokinetic models in human gliomas

J Magn Reson Imaging. 2004 May;19(5):527-36. doi: 10.1002/jmri.20045.


Purpose: To compare in a group of patients with cerebral gliomas the estimates of Ktrans between a conventionally established pharmacokinetic model and a recently developed first pass method.

Materials and methods: Glioma patients (23) were studied using T1-weighted dynamic contrast-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and two alternative pharmacokinetic models were used for analysis to derive the volume transfer constant Ktrans. These were a modified version of the established model (yielding KTK) and a recently published method based on first pass leakage profile (FP) of contrast bolus (yielding Kfp).

Results: We found a strong correlation between intra-tumoral median KTK and Kfp (rho = 0.650, P < 0.01), but the values from the conventional model were consistently and significantly higher (mean of inter-tumoral Kfp and KTK medians were 0.018 minute(-1) and 0.284 minute(-1), respectively, P < 0.001). The spatial distribution of KTK and Kfp showed poor correlation in the presence of large vascular structures and good correlation elsewhere.

Conclusion: KTK and Kfp produce similar biologic information within voxels not dominated by vascular tissue. The FP method avoids erroneous overestimation of Ktrans in areas of significant intravascular contrast. Findings are in keeping with the predictions of previous mathematical simulations.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Blood Volume
  • Brain Neoplasms / blood supply
  • Brain Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Brain Neoplasms / physiopathology
  • Capillary Permeability
  • Cerebrovascular Circulation
  • Contrast Media / pharmacokinetics*
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Female
  • Glioma / blood supply
  • Glioma / metabolism*
  • Glioma / physiopathology
  • Humans
  • Image Enhancement / methods
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging / methods*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Models, Biological
  • Sensitivity and Specificity


  • Contrast Media