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Neoplasia. 2007 Dec;9(12):1003-11.

A feasibility study evaluating the functional diffusion map as a predictive imaging biomarker for detection of treatment response in a patient with metastatic prostate cancer to the bone.

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Department of Radiology, University of Michigan School of Medicine, Ann Arbor, MI 48109, USA.


Prostate cancer (PCa) is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in American men with a subset inevitably presenting with metastatic disease to the bone. A well-recognized limitation in evaluating new treatments for metastatic PCa is the inability to use imaging to objectively assess response therapy. In this study, we evaluated the feasibility of clinically translating the functional diffusion map (fDM) imaging biomarker for quantifying the spatiotemporal effects of bone tumor response in a patient treated for metastatic PCa with bone metastases. A patient beginning therapy was scanned using MRI before treatment and again at 2 and 8 weeks post-treatment initiation to quantify changes in tumor diffusion values. Three metastatic lesions were identified for fDM analysis, all of which all demonstrated an early increase in diffusion values at 2 weeks, which increased further at 8 weeks post-treatment initiation. This finding correlated with a decrease in the patient's prostate-specific antigen (PSA) levels suggestive of patient response. CT, bone scans, and anatomic MRI images obtained posttreatment were found to be uninformative for the assessment of treatment effectiveness. This study presents the feasibility of fDM-measurements in osseous lesions over time and shows that changes in fDM values were consistent with therapeutic response. Thus, the fDM imaging biomarker may provide a quantifiable therapeutic endpoint to assess response in patients with metastatic bone cancer.


Metastatic prostate cancer; androgen deprivation therapy; diffusion MRI; functional diffusion map; imaging biomarker

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