Introduction: The objective of this study was to evaluate dynamic contrast-enhanced Doppler ultrasound (DCE-US) with perfusion software (Vascular Recognition Imaging) and contrast agent injection as a predictor of tumour response, progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS).
Patients and methods: Thirty patients with a metastatic renal cell carcinoma (RCC) already enrolled in a double-blind randomised study were evaluated. Examinations were performed at baseline, and after 3 and 6 weeks on sorafenib or a placebo in patients with tumour targets that were accessible to DCE-US.
Results: A total of 85 examinations were performed, 30 at baseline, 28 at 3 weeks and 27 at 6 weeks. The combination of a decrease in contrast uptake exceeding 10% and stability or a decrease in tumour volume allowed us to discriminate seven good responders and 20 poor responders at 3 weeks. There was a statistically significant difference in PFS (p=10(-4)) and OS (p=10(-4)) between good and poor responders.
Conclusion: DCE-US is a new noninvasive imaging technique which might be an effective tool for evaluating antiangiogenic drugs in renal cancer.