Recurrent glioblastoma: optimum area under the curve method derived from dynamic contrast-enhanced T1-weighted perfusion MR imaging

Radiology. 2013 Nov;269(2):561-8. doi: 10.1148/radiol.13130016. Epub 2013 Jul 22.


Purpose: To determine whether the ratio of the initial area under the time-signal intensity curve (AUC) (IAUC) to the final AUC--or AUCR--derived from dynamic contrast material-enhanced magnetic resonance (MR) imaging can be an imaging biomarker for distinguishing recurrent glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) from radiation necrosis and to compare the diagnostic accuracy of the AUCR with commonly used model-free dynamic contrast-enhanced MR imaging parameters.

Materials and methods: The institutional review board approved this retrospective study and waived the informed consent requirement. Fifty-seven consecutive patients with pathologically confirmed recurrent GBM (n = 32) or radiation necrosis (n = 25) underwent dynamic contrast-enhanced MR imaging. Histogram parameters of the IAUC at 30, 60, and 120 seconds and the AUCR, which included the mean value at the higher curve of the bimodal histogram (mAUCR(H)), as well as 90th percentile cumulative histogram cutoffs, were calculated and were correlated with final pathologic findings. The best predictor for differentiating recurrent GBM from radiation necrosis was determined by means of receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve analysis.

Results: The demographic data were not significantly different between the two patient groups. There were statistically significant differences in all of the IAUC and AUCR parameters between the recurrent GBM and the radiation necrosis patient groups (P < .05 for each). ROC curve analyses showed mAUCR(H) to be the best single predictor of recurrent GBM (mAUCR(H) for recurrent GBM = 0.35 ± 0.11 [standard deviation], vs 0.19 ± 0.17 for radiation necrosis; P < .0001; optimum cutoff, 0.23), with a sensitivity of 93.8% and a specificity of 88.0%.

Conclusion: A bimodal histogram analysis of AUCR derived from dynamic contrast-enhanced MR imaging can be a potential noninvasive imaging biomarker for differentiating recurrent GBM from radiation necrosis.

Supplemental material:

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Area Under Curve
  • Contrast Media
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Female
  • Glioblastoma / pathology*
  • Humans
  • Image Interpretation, Computer-Assisted
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging / methods*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local / pathology*
  • Radiation Injuries / pathology
  • Retrospective Studies


  • Contrast Media