Non-small cell lung cancer: histopathologic correlates for texture parameters at CT

Radiology. 2013 Jan;266(1):326-36. doi: 10.1148/radiol.12112428. Epub 2012 Nov 20.


Purpose: To correlate computed tomographic (CT) texture in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) with histopathologic markers for angiogenesis and hypoxia.

Materials and methods: The study was institutional review board approved, and informed consent was obtained. Fourteen patients with NSCLC underwent CT prior to intravenous administration of pimonidazole (0.5 g/m(2)), a marker of hypoxia, 24 hours before surgery. Texture was assessed for unenhanced and contrast material-enhanced CT images by using a software algorithm that selectively filters and extracts texture at different anatomic scales (1.0 [fine detail] to 2.5 [coarse features]), with quantification of the standard deviation (SD) of all pixel values and the mean value of positive pixels (MPP) and uniformity of distribution of positive gray-level pixel values (UPP). After surgery, matched tumor sections were stained for angiogenesis (CD34 expression) and for markers of hypoxia (glucose transporter protein 1 [Glut-1] and pimonidazole). The percentage and average intensity of the tumor stained were assessed. A linear mixed-effects model was used to assess the correlations between CT texture and staining intensity.

Results: SD and MPP quantified from medium to coarse texture on contrast-enhanced CT images showed significant associations with the average intensity of tumor staining with pimonidazole (for SD: filter value, 2.5; slope = 0.003; P = .0003). UPP (medium to coarse texture) on unenhanced CT images showed a significant inverse association with tumor Glut-1 expression (filter value, 2.5; slope = -115.13; P = .0008). MPP quantified from medium to coarse texture on both unenhanced and contrast-enhanced CT images showed significant inverse associations with tumor CD34 expression (unenhanced CT: filter value, 1.8; slope = -0.0008; P = .003; contrast-enhanced CT: filter value, 1.8; slope = -0.0006; P = .004).

Conclusion: Texture parameters derived from CT images of NSCLC have the potential to act as imaging correlates for tumor hypoxia and angiogenesis.

Supplemental material:

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Algorithms*
  • Biopsy
  • Carcinoma, Non-Small-Cell Lung / diagnosis*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lung Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pattern Recognition, Automated / methods*
  • Radiographic Image Enhancement / methods*
  • Radiographic Image Interpretation, Computer-Assisted / methods*
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Statistics as Topic
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed / methods*