Objective: A long-lasting concern has prevailed for the identification of predictive biomarkers for high-grade gliomas (HGGs) using MRI. However, a consensus of which imaging parameters assemble a significant survival model is still missing in the literature; we investigated the significant positive or negative contribution of several MR biomarkers in this tumour prognosis.
Methods: A retrospective cohort of supratentorial HGGs [11 glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) and 17 anaplastic astrocytomas] included 28 patients (9 females and 19 males, respectively, with a mean age of 50.4 years, standard deviation: 16.28 years; range: 13-85 years). Oedema and viable tumour measurements were acquired using regions of interest in T1 weighted, T2 weighted, fluid-attenuated inversion recovery, apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) and MR spectroscopy (MRS). We calculated Kaplan-Meier curves and obtained Cox's proportional hazards.
Results: During the follow-up period (3-98 months), 17 deaths were recorded. The median survival time was 1.73 years (range, 0.287-8.947 years). Only 3 out of 20 covariates (choline-to-N-acetyl aspartate and lipids-lactate-to-creatine ratios and age) showed significance in explaining the variability in the survival hazards model; score test: χ2 (3) = 9.098, p = 0.028.
Conclusion: MRS metabolites overcome volumetric parameters of peritumoral oedema and viable tumour, as well as tumour region ADC measurements. Specific MRS ratios (Cho/Naa, L-L/Cr) might be considered in a regular follow-up for these tumours. Advances in knowledge: Cho/Naa ratio is the strongest survival predictor with a log-hazard function of 2.672 in GBM. Low levels of lipids-lactate/Cr ratio represent up to a 41.6% reduction in the risk of death in GBM.