PURPOSE - To evaluate the ability of a quantified power Doppler ultrasonography (US) system to help quantitate differences in tumor vascularity after radiation therapy and administration of tumor necrosis factor (TNF).
MATERIALS AND METHODS - Murine glioblastoma tumors were grown in the thighs of two sets of 25 mice each. Each mouse was assigned to one of four treatment groups: control (no treatment), radiation therapy, TNF therapy, or combination therapy (both radiation and TNF therapies). Mice were then evaluated with quantified power Doppler US, and a vascularity index (color area) was calculated for different tumor regions in each group. The tumors were then excised, and histologic evaluation was performed by using an immunofluorescence-tagged monoclonal antibody against blood vessel endothelium. The number of stained blood vessels per high-power field was correlated with the sonographically determined vascularity index.
RESULTS - The color area of the total tumor decreased to 37% of that in the control group in mice treated with radiation therapy alone (P: =.02), 26% of that in the control group in mice treated with TNF alone (P: =.05), and 8% of that in the control group in those treated with both TNF and radiation (P: =.006). These results correlated well with the quantified results from immunofluorescent staining (r = 0.98).
CONCLUSION - Quantified power Doppler US is a noninvasive method for the evaluation of tumor vascularity and blood flow.