BACKGROUND - Diffusion-weighted MRI (DWI) signal attenuation is often not mono-exponential (i.e. non-Gaussian diffusion) with stronger diffusion weighting. Several non-Gaussian diffusion models have been developed and may provide new information or higher sensitivity compared with the conventional apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) method. However the relative merits of these models to detect tumor therapeutic response is not fully clear.
METHODS - Conventional ADC, and three widely-used non-Gaussian models, (bi-exponential, stretched exponential, and statistical model), were implemented and compared for assessing SW620 human colon cancer xenografts responding to barasertib, an agent known to induce apoptosis via polyploidy. Bayesian Information Criterion (BIC) was used for model selection among all three non-Gaussian models.
RESULTS - All of tumor volume, histology, conventional ADC, and three non-Gaussian DWI models could show significant differences between control and treatment groups after four days of treatment. However, only the non-Gaussian models detected significant changes after two days of treatment. For any treatment or control group, over 65.7% of tumor voxels indicate the bi-exponential model is strongly or very strongly preferred.
CONCLUSION - Non-Gaussian DWI model-derived biomarkers are capable of detecting tumor earlier chemotherapeutic response of tumors compared with conventional ADC and tumor volume. The bi-exponential model provides better fitting compared with statistical and stretched exponential models for the tumor and treatment models used in the current work.
Copyright Â© 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.