The objective of this work was to propose and demonstrate a novel technique for the assessment of tumour pharmacokinetic parameters together with a regionally estimated vascular input function. A breast cancer patient T2*-weighted dynamic contrast enhanced MRI (DCE-MRI) dataset acquired at high temporal resolution during the first-pass bolus perfusion was used for testing the technique. Extraction of the lesion volume transfer constant K(trans) together with the intravascular plasma volume fraction v(p) was achieved by optimizing a capillary input function with a measure of cardiac output using the principle of intravascular indicator dilution theory. For a region of interest drawn within the breast lesion a v(p) of 0.16 and a K(trans) of 0.70 min(-1) were estimated. Despite the value of v(p) being higher than expected, estimated K(trans) was in accordance with the literature values. In conclusion, the technique proposed here, has the main advantage of allowing the estimation of breast tumour pharmacokinetic parameters from first-pass perfusion T2*-weighted DCE-MRI data without the need of measuring an arterial input function. The technique may also have applicability to T1-weighted DCE-MRI data.
Di Giovanni, P., Ahearn, T. S., Semple, S. I., Bin Che Ahmad, A., Lloyd, W. K. C., Gilbert, F. J., & Redpath, T. W. (2011). Use of capillary input function with cardiac output for the estimation of lesion pharmacokinetic parameters, preliminary results on a breast cancer patient. Physics in Medicine and Biology, 56(6), 1743-1753. https://doi.org/10.1088/0031-9155/56/6/014