Breast MRI radiogenomics: Current status and research implications

J Magn Reson Imaging. 2016 Jun;43(6):1269-78. doi: 10.1002/jmri.25116. Epub 2015 Dec 10.


Breast magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) radiogenomics is an emerging area of research that has the potential to directly influence clinical practice. Clinical MRI scanners today are capable of providing excellent temporal and spatial resolution, which allows extraction of numerous imaging features via human extraction approaches or complex computer vision algorithms. Meanwhile, advances in breast cancer genetics research has resulted in the identification of promising genes associated with cancer outcomes. In addition, validated genomic signatures have been developed that allow categorization of breast cancers into distinct molecular subtypes as well as predict the risk of cancer recurrence and response to therapy. Current radiogenomics research has been directed towards exploratory analysis of individual genes, understanding tumor biology, and developing imaging surrogates to genetic analysis with the long-term goal of developing a meaningful tool for clinical care. The background of breast MRI radiogenomics research, image feature extraction techniques, approaches to radiogenomics research, and promising areas of investigation are reviewed. J. Magn. Reson. Imaging 2016;43:1269-1278.

Keywords: MRI; breast cancer; computer vision algorithms; genetics; radiogenomics.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Biomarkers, Tumor / genetics*
  • Biomedical Research / methods
  • Breast Neoplasms / diagnostic imaging*
  • Breast Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Breast Neoplasms / pathology
  • Genetic Predisposition to Disease / genetics*
  • Genomics / methods
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging / methods*
  • Molecular Imaging / methods*
  • Radiology / methods


  • Biomarkers, Tumor