Radiation therapy effects on white matter fiber tracts of the limbic circuit

ArticleinMedical Physics 39(9):5603-13 · September 2012with7 Reads
DOI: 10.1118/1.4745560 · Source: PubMed
To segment fiber tracts in the limbic circuit and to assess their sensitivity to radiation therapy (RT). Twelve patients with brain metastases who had received fractionated whole brain radiation therapy to 30 Gy or 37.5 Gy were included in the study. Diffusion weighted images were acquired pre-RT, at the end of RT, and 1-month post-RT. The fornix, corpus callosum, and cingulum were extracted from diffusion weighted images by combining fiber tracking and segmentation methods based upon characteristics of the fiber bundles. Cingulum was segmented by a seed-based tractography, fornix by a region of interests (ROI)-based tractography, and corpus callosum by a level-set segmentation algorithm. The radiation-induced longitudinal changes of diffusion indices of the structures were evaluated. Significant decreases were observed in the fractional anisotropy of the posterior part of the cingulum, fornix, and corpus callosum from pre-RT to end of RT by -14.0%, -12.5%, and -5.2%, respectively (p < 0.001), and from pre-RT to 1-month post-RT by -11.9%, -12.8%, and -6.4%, respectively (p < 0.001). Moreover, significant increases were observed in the mean diffusivity of the corpus callosum and the posterior part of the cingulum from pre-RT to end of RT by 6.8% and 6.5%, respectively, and from pre-RT to 1-month post-RT by 8.5% and 6.3%, respectively. The increase in the radial diffusivity primarily contributed to the significant decrease in the fractional anisotropy, indicating that demyelination is the predominant radiation effect on the white matter structures. Our findings indicate that the fornix and the posterior part of the cingulum are significantly susceptible to radiation damage. We have developed robust computer-aided semiautomatic segmentation and fiber tracking tools to facilitate the ROI delineation of critical structures, which is important for assessment of radiation damage in a longitudinal fashion.
    • "Before tractography and connectivity analysis, the DTI data were prepared by interpolation to a cubic voxel size of 1.96 mm and tensor, FA and MD calculation (Pierpaoli et al. 2001, Nazem-Zadeh et al. 2012 ). For the purpose of tractography , the principal diffusion direction (PDD), the eigenvector corresponding to the largest eigenvalue of the tensor, was also calculated from the tensor. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Magnetoencephalography (MEG) is a noninvasive imaging method for localization of focal epileptiform activity in patients with epilepsy. Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) is a noninvasive imaging method for measuring the diffusion properties of the underlying white matter tracts through which epileptiform activity is propagated. This study investigates the relationship between the cerebral functional abnormalities quantified by MEG coherence and structural abnormalities quantified by DTI in mesial temporal lobe epilepsy (mTLE). Resting state MEG data was analyzed using MEG coherence source imaging (MEG-CSI) method to determine the coherence in 54 anatomical sites in 17 adult mTLE patients with surgical resection and Engel class I outcome, and 17 age- and gender- matched controls. DTI tractography identified the fiber tracts passing through these same anatomical sites of the same subjects. Then, DTI nodal degree and laterality index were calculated and compared with the corresponding MEG coherence and laterality index. MEG coherence laterality, after Bonferroni adjustment, showed significant differences for right versus left mTLE in insular cortex and both lateral orbitofrontal and superior temporal gyri (p < 0.017). Likewise, DTI nodal degree laterality, after Bonferroni adjustment, showed significant differences for right versus left mTLE in gyrus rectus, insular cortex, precuneus and superior temporal gyrus (p < 0.017). In insular cortex, MEG coherence laterality correlated with DTI nodal degree laterality ([Formula: see text] in the cases of mTLE. None of these anatomical sites showed statistically significant differences in coherence laterality between right and left sides of the controls. Coherence laterality was in agreement with the declared side of epileptogenicity in insular cortex (in 82 % of patients) and both lateral orbitofrontal (88 %) and superior temporal gyri (88 %). Nodal degree laterality was also in agreement with the declared side of epileptogenicity in gyrus rectus (in 88 % of patients), insular cortex (71 %), precuneus (82 %) and superior temporal gyrus (94 %). Combining all significant laterality indices improved the lateralization accuracy to 94 % and 100 % for the coherence and nodal degree laterality indices, respectively. The associated variations in diffusion properties of fiber tracts quantified by DTI and coherence measures quantified by MEG with respect to epileptogenicity possibly reflect the chronic microstructural cerebral changes associated with functional interictal activity. The proposed methodology for using MEG and DTI to investigate diffusion abnormalities related to focal epileptogenicity and propagation may provide a further means of noninvasive lateralization.
    Article · Apr 2016
    • "The corpus callosum and its subregions were established using an automatic seed-based segmentation algorithm, and included: 1-Automatic three-dimensional segmentation using a level-set algorithm based on tensor similarities between neighboring voxels of a growing surface boundary (Nazem-Zadeh et al., 2012b); 2-Extraction of the main axes using principal component analysis (PCA) and division into Witelson subregions of genu (including rostrum), rostral body, anterior midbody, posterior midbody, isthmus and splenium (Witelson, 1989, Nazem-Zadeh et al., 2013). The fornix was also established using a multiple ROI fiber-tracking algorithm (Nazem-Zadeh et al., 2012a), and included: 1-Manual depiction of three coronal ROIs at the most anterior part of the forniceal body, the branching point of the forniceal body from the crura and between the branching point and the most posterior part of the forniceal crura; 2-Manual depiction of two axial ROIs at the most posterior and the most inferior parts of the forniceal crura; 3-Fiber-tracking between consecutive ROIs; 4-Division of the fornix into three subregions of anterior body, left crus and right crus using the branching point of the forniceal crura from the body. with overlaid segments on sagittal images. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Purpose: To develop lateralization models for distinguishing between unilateral and bilateral mesial temporal lobe epilepsy (mTLE) and determining laterality in cases of unilateral mTLE. Background: mTLE is the most common form of medically refractory focal epilepsy. Many mTLE patients fail to demonstrate an unambiguous unilateral ictal onset. Intracranial EEG (icEEG) monitoring can be performed to establish whether the ictal origin is unilateral or truly bilateral with independent bitemporal ictal origin. However, because of the expense and risk of intracranial electrode placement, much research has been done to determine if the need for icEEG can be obviated with noninvasive neuroimaging methods, such as diffusion tensor imaging (DTI). Methods: Fractional anisotropy (FA) was used to quantify microstructural changes reflected in the diffusivity properties of the corpus callosum, cingulum, and fornix, in a retrospective cohort of 31 patients confirmed to have unilateral (n = 24) or bilateral (n = 7) mTLE. All unilateral mTLE patients underwent resection with an Engel class I outcome. Eleven were reported to have hippocampal sclerosis on pathological analysis; nine had undergone prior icEEG. The bilateral mTLE patients had undergone icEEG demonstrating independent epileptiform activity in both right and left hemispheres. Twenty-three nonepileptic subjects were included as controls. Results: In cases of right mTLE, FA showed significant differences from control in all callosal subregions, in both left and right superior cingulate subregions, and in forniceal crura. Comparison of right and left mTLE cases showed significant differences in FA of callosal genu, rostral body, and splenium and the right posteroinferior and superior cingulate subregions. In cases of left mTLE, FA showed significant differences from control only in the callosal isthmus. Significant differences in FA were identified when cases of right mTLE were compared with bilateral mTLE cases in the rostral and midbody callosal subregions and isthmus. Based on 11 FA measurements in the cingulate, callosal and forniceal subregions, a response-driven lateralization model successfully differentiated all cases (n = 54) into groups of unilateral right (n = 12), unilateral left (n = 12), and bilateral mTLE (n = 7), and nonepileptic control (23). Conclusion: The proposed response-driven DTI biomarker is intended to lessen diagnostic ambiguity of laterality in cases of mTLE and help optimize selection of surgical candidates. Application of this model shows promise in reducing the need for invasive icEEG in prospective cases.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2015
    • "The anterior and posterior descending segments of the cingulum are difficult to delineate without adequately defined regions-of-interest (ROIs) [17,18,35]. The seed-based segmentation-tractography method overcomes this limitation and is more suited to assessing thickness, particularly , in both the anterior and posterior descending segments [33]. Normalization was not applied to the diffusion-based hemispheric variation methods because FA and MD values are region-specific meaningful information which should be preserved to be able to differentiate between estimates of uncertainty in different fiber tracts or brain regions . "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Purpose To analyze the utility of a quantitative uncertainty analysis approach for evaluation and comparison of various MRI findings for lateralization of epileptogenicity in mesial temporal lobe epilepsy (mTLE), including novel diffusion-based analyses. Methods We estimated the hemispheric variation uncertainty (HVU) of hippocampal T1 volumetry and FLAIR (Fluid Attenuated Inversion Recovery) intensity. Using diffusion tensor images of 23 nonepileptic subjects, we estimated the HVU levels of mean diffusivity (MD) in the hippocampus, and fractional anisotropy (FA) in the posteroinferior cingulum and crus of fornix. Imaging from a retrospective cohort of 20 TLE patients who had undergone surgical resection with Engel class I outcomes was analyzed to determine whether asymmetry of preoperative volumetrics, FLAIR intensities, and MD values in hippocampi, as well as FA values in posteroinferior cingula and fornix crura correctly predicted laterality of seizure onset. Ten of the cohort had pathologically proven mesial temporal sclerosis (MTS). Seven of these patients had undergone extraoperative electrocorticography (ECoG) for lateralization or to rule out extra-temporal foci. Results HVU was estimated to be 3.1 × 10–5 for hippocampal MD, 0.027 for FA in posteroinferior cingulum, 0.018 for FA in crus of fornix, 0.069 for hippocampal normalized volume, and 0.099 for hippocampal normalized FLAIR intensity. Using HVU analysis, a higher hippocampal MD value, lower FA within the posteroinferior cingulum and crus of fornix, shrinkage in hippocampal volume, and higher hippocampal FLAIR intensity were observed beyond uncertainty on the side ipsilateral to seizure onset for 10, 10, 9, 9, and 10 out of 10 pathology-proven MTS patients, respectively. Considering all 20 TLE patients, these numbers were 18, 15, 14, 13, and 16, respectively. However, consolidating lateralization results of HVU analysis on these quantities by majority voting detected the epileptogenic side for 19 out of 20 cases with no wrong lateralization. Conclusion The presence of MTS in TLE patients is associated with an elevated MD value in the ipsilateral hippocampus and a reduced FA value in the posteroinferior subregion of the ipsilateral cingulum and crus of ipsilateral fornix. When considering all TLE patients, among the mentioned biomarkers the hippocampal MD had the best performance with true detection rate of 90% without any wrong lateralization. The proposed uncertainty based analyses hold promise for improving decision-making for surgical resection.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2014
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