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Programs & Resources

University of Michigan (1)

Quantitative DW-MRI for Early Breast Cancer Treatment Response Assessment
Brian Ross
University of Michigan

This renewal continues efforts toward establishing diffusion-weighted MRI (DWI) as a quantitative imaging metric for cancer patients. Based upon progress to date, this renewal effort has three Specific Aims and builds on strategic collaborations within the NCI Quantitative Imaging Network (QIN), Imbio, LLC (industrial partner) and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). (Aim 1) Development of a standardized platform for diffusion analysis and validation of DWI metrics for quantification of tumor diffusion values will be accomplished through establishment of histogram and voxel-based metrics. (Aim 2) In collaboration with NIST, development of the next-generation DWI phantom using in-situ thermometry for precise diffusion measurements over the full clinically-relevant ADC range to generate quantitative quality assurance and system performance metrics across diverse scanner platforms. (Aim 3) Based on measured system characteristics, implementation of retrospective correction of DW nonlinearity errors in multi-center trials, their current research effort will address major hurdles in establishing DWI for therapeutic response assessment to improve clinical management of cancer patients. The research team at the University of Michigan will develop and rigorously test a medical imaging platform allowing for a standardized implementation and clinical validation of advanced DWI analytical techniques for quantification of tumor diffusion values across multiple MRI systems. They will also continue the success of their widely-adopted ice water DWI phantom with the development of a next-generation DWI phantom platform that will provide quantitative diffusion measurements over the full tissue range of diffusion values. Finally, they will provide a strategy for resolving a major source of technical variability in DWI related to instrumental bias from differences in MRI gradient systems through the development of system-specific correction tools. The renewal of their QIN project will provide advanced analytical and quality assurance support to clinical trials including I-SPY2 (investigation of serial studies to predict your therapeutic response with imaging and molecular analysis, ACRIN 6698, and ACRIN 6702. Success of their endeavor will significantly advance the clinical management of cancer patients ultimately improving outcomes.