Dynamic Contrast-Enhanced Magnetic Resonance Imaging in Oncology

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Summary:Dynamic contrast-enhanced MRI (DCE-MRI) is the acquisition of sequential images during the passage of a contrast agent within a tissue of interest. The current gadolinium chelate agents enable visualization of lesion vasculature and, due to their small size, can be used to assess vascular permeability. Recent studies demonstrated that the temporal evolution of gadolinium-induced signal intensity changes within a tumor reflects the angiogenic properties of the tumor. These can be quantified and are related to vascular density and other angiogenic characteristics of lesions, such as the level of vascular endothelial growth factor. DCE-MRI provides noninvasive characterization of antiangiogenic response of tumor during therapeutic intervention to monitor and predict response. This article reviews the fundamental pathophysiological basis of DCE-MRI and the technical aspects necessary for successful implementation DCE-MRI. The role of DCE-MRI in tumor detection, characterization, and therapy monitoring is reviewed.

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