A simple, reproducible method for monitoring the treatment of tumours using dynamic contrast-enhanced MR imaging

Br J Cancer. 2006 May 22;94(10):1420-7. doi: 10.1038/sj.bjc.6603140.


Dynamic contrast-enhanced MR imaging (DCE-MRI) may act as a biomarker for successful cancer therapy. Simple, reproducible techniques may widen this application. This paper demonstrates a single slice imaging technique. The image acquisition is performed in less than 500 ms making it relatively insensitive to respiratory motion. Data from phantom studies and a reproducibility study in solid human tumours are presented. The reproducibility study showed a coefficient of variation (CoV) of 19.1% for K(trans) and 15.8% for the initial area under the contrast enhancement curve (IAUC). This was improved to 16 and 13.9% if tumours of diameter less than 3 cm were excluded. The individual repeatability (the range within which individual measurements are expected to fall) was 30.6% for K(trans) and 26.5% for IAUC for tumours greater than 3 cm diameter. This approach to DCE-MRI image acquisition can be performed with standard clinical scanners, and data analysis is straightforward. For treatment trials with 10 patients in a cohort, the CoV implies that the method would be sensitive to a treatment effect of greater than 18%. The individual repeatability is well inside the 40% change shown to be important in clinical studies using this DCE-MRI technique.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial, Phase I

MeSH terms

  • Angiogenesis Inhibitors / therapeutic use*
  • Area Under Curve
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / drug therapy
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / pathology
  • Contrast Media
  • Drug Monitoring
  • Humans
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted
  • Liver Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Liver Neoplasms / drug therapy
  • Liver Neoplasms / secondary
  • Lung Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Lung Neoplasms / drug therapy
  • Lung Neoplasms / secondary
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging / methods*
  • Phantoms, Imaging
  • Phthalazines / therapeutic use*
  • Pyridines / therapeutic use*
  • Receptors, Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor / antagonists & inhibitors*
  • Reproducibility of Results


  • Angiogenesis Inhibitors
  • Contrast Media
  • Phthalazines
  • Pyridines
  • vatalanib
  • Receptors, Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor