Montelius M, Spetz J, Jalnefjord O, Berger E, Nilsson O, Ljungberg M, Forssell-Aronsson E
Transl Oncol 11 (2) 193-204 [2018-04-00; online 2018-01-11]
Magnetic resonance (MR) methods enable noninvasive, regional tumor therapy response assessment, but associations between MR parameters, underlying biology, and therapeutic effects must be investigated. The aim of this study was to investigate response assessment efficacy and biological associations of MR parameters in a neuroendocrine tumor (NET) model subjected to radionuclide treatment. Twenty-one mice with NETs received 177Lu-octreotate at day 0. MR experiments (day -1, 1, 3, 8, and 13) included T2-weighted, dynamic contrast-enhanced (DCE) and diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) and relaxation measurements (T1/T2*). Tumor tissue was analyzed using proteomics. MR-derived parameters were evaluated for each examination day and for different radial distances from the tumor center. Response assessment efficacy and biological associations were evaluated using feature selection and protein expression correlations, respectively. Reduced tumor growth rate or shrinkage was observed until day 8, followed by reestablished growth in most tumors. The most important MR parameter for response prediction was DCE-MRI-derived pretreatment signal enhancement ratio (SER) at 40% to 60% radial distance, where it correlated significantly also with centrally sampled protein CCD89 (association: DNA damage and repair, proliferation, cell cycle arrest). The second most important was changed diffusion (D) between day -1 and day 3, at 60% to 80% radial distance, where it correlated significantly also with peripherally sampled protein CATA (association: oxidative stress, proliferation, cell cycle arrest, apoptotic cell death). Important information regarding tumor biology in response to radionuclide therapy is reflected in several MR parameters, SER and D in particular. The spatial and temporal information provided by MR methods increases the sensitivity for tumor therapy response.