MRI Biomarker for Response of Brain Tumor to Therapy
Assessment of radiation and chemotherapy efficacy for brain cancer patients is traditionally accomplished by measuring changes in tumor size several months after therapy has been administered. The ability to use noninvasive imaging during the early stages of fractionated therapy to determine whether a particular treatment will be effective would provide an opportunity to optimize individual patient management and avoid unnecessary systemic toxicity, expense, and treatment delays. Pretreatment scans, and changes in tumor water diffusion values are calculated and displayed as a functional diffusion map (fDM) for correlation with clinical response. The fDMs can predict patient response at 3 weeks from the start of treatment. Early changes in tumor diffusion values could be used as a prognostic indicator of subsequent volumetric tumor response. Overall, fDM analysis provides an early biomarker for predicting treatment response in brain tumor patients.