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iScience. 2019 Oct 9;21:68-83. doi: 10.1016/j.isci.2019.10.015. [Epub ahead of print]

Tracking Dynamics of Spontaneous Tumors in Mice Using Photon-Counting Computed Tomography.

Author information

1
Aix-Marseille Univ, CNRS/IN2P3, CPPM (Centre de Physique des Particules de Marseille), 163 Avenue de Luminy, case 902, Marseille 13009, France.
2
Aix-Marseille Univ, CNRS, IBDM (Developmental Biology Institute of Marseille), 163 Avenue de Luminy, case 907, Marseille 13009, France.
3
Aix-Marseille Univ, CNRS, INSERM, CIML, Marseille 13009, France.
4
Aix-Marseille Univ, CERIMED, Marseille 13005, France.
5
Aix-Marseille Univ, CNRS/IN2P3, CPPM (Centre de Physique des Particules de Marseille), 163 Avenue de Luminy, case 902, Marseille 13009, France. Electronic address: morel@cppm.in2p3.fr.
6
Aix-Marseille Univ, CNRS, IBDM (Developmental Biology Institute of Marseille), 163 Avenue de Luminy, case 907, Marseille 13009, France. Electronic address: flavio.maina@univ-amu.fr.

Abstract

Computed tomography is a powerful medical imaging modality for longitudinal studies in cancer to follow neoplasia progression and evaluate anticancer therapies. Here, we report the generation of a photon-counting micro-computed tomography (PC-CT) method based on hybrid pixel detectors with enhanced sensitivity and precision of tumor imaging. We then applied PC-CT for longitudinal imaging in a clinically relevant liver cancer model, the Alb-R26Met mice, and found a remarkable heterogeneity in the dynamics for tumors at the initiation phases. Instead, the growth curve of evolving tumors exhibited a comparable exponential growth, with a constant doubling time. Furthermore, longitudinal PC-CT imaging in mice treated with a combination of MEK and BCL-XL inhibitors revealed a drastic tumor regression accompanied by a striking remodeling of macrophages in the tumor microenvironment. Thus, PC-CT is a powerful system to detect cancer initiation and progression, and to monitor its evolution during treatment.

KEYWORDS:

Cancer; Optical Imaging; Optics

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