Purpose: To examine the potential use of blood oxygenation level dependent (BOLD) and tissue oxygenation level dependent (TOLD) contrast MRI to assess tumor oxygenation and predict radiation response.
Methods: BOLD and TOLD MRI were performed on Dunning R3327-AT1 rat prostate tumors during hyperoxic gas breathing challenge at 4.7 T. Animals were divided into two groups. In Group 1 (n = 9), subsequent (19) F MRI based on spin lattice relaxation of hexafluorobenzene reporter molecule provided quantitative oximetry for comparison. For Group 2 rats (n = 13) growth delay following a single dose of 30 Gy was compared with preirradiation BOLD and TOLD assessments.
Results: Oxygen (100%O2 ) and carbogen (95%O2 /5%CO2 ) challenge elicited similar BOLD, TOLD and pO2 responses. Strong correlations were observed between BOLD or R2* response and quantitative (19) F pO2 measurements. TOLD response showed a general trend with weaker correlation. Irradiation caused a significant tumor growth delay and tumors with larger changes in TOLD and R1 values upon oxygen breathing exhibited significantly increased tumor growth delay.
Conclusion: These results provide further insight into the relationships between oxygen sensitive (BOLD/TOLD) MRI and tumor pO2 . Moreover, a larger increase in R1 response to hyperoxic gas challenge coincided with greater tumor growth delay following irradiation.
Keywords: BOLD; MRI; carbogen; hypoxia; oximetry; oxygen; radiation response.
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