Antiangiogenic and Radiation Therapy Early Effects on In Vivo Computed Tomography Perfusion Parameters in Human Colon Cancer Xenografts in Mice

Molecular Imaging Program at Stanford, Department of Radiology, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, CA. USA.
Investigative radiology (Impact Factor: 4.44). 01/2012; 47(1):25-32. DOI: 10.1097/RLI.0b013e31823a82f6
Source: PubMed


To assess early treatment effects on computed tomography (CT) perfusion parameters after antiangiogenic and radiation therapy in subcutaneously implanted, human colon cancer xenografts in mice and to correlate in vivo CT perfusion parameters with ex vivo assays of tumor vascularity and hypoxia.
Dynamic contrast-enhanced CT (perfusion CT, 129 mAs, 80 kV, 12 slices × 2.4 mm; 150 μL iodinated contrast agent injected at a rate of 1 mL/min intravenously) was performed in 100 subcutaneous human colon cancer xenografts on baseline day 0. Mice in group 1 (n=32) received a single dose of the antiangiogenic agent bevacizumab (10 mg/kg body weight), mice in group 2 (n=32) underwent a single radiation treatment (12 Gy), and mice in group 3 (n=32) remained untreated. On days 1, 3, 5, and 7 after treatment, 8 mice from each group underwent a second CT perfusion scan, respectively, after which tumors were excised for ex vivo analysis. Four mice were killed after baseline scanning on day 0 for ex vivo analysis. Blood flow (BF), blood volume (BV), and flow extraction product were calculated using the left ventricle as an arterial input function. Correlation of in vivo CT perfusion parameters with ex vivo microvessel density and extent of tumor hypoxia were assessed by immunofluorescence. Reproducibility of CT perfusion parameter measurements was calculated in an additional 8 tumor-bearing mice scanned twice within 5 hours with the same CT perfusion imaging protocol.
The intraclass correlation coefficients for BF, BV, and flow extraction product from repeated CT perfusion scans were 0.93 (95% confidence interval: 0.78, 0.97), 0.88 (0.66, 0.95), and 0.88 (0.56, 0.95), respectively. Changes in perfusion parameters and tumor volumes over time were different between treatments. After bevacizumab treatment, all 3 perfusion parameters significantly decreased from day 1 (P ≤ 0.006) and remained significantly decreased until day 7 (P ≤ 0.008); tumor volume increased significantly only on day 7 (P=0.04). After radiation treatment, all 3 perfusion parameters decreased significantly on day 1 (P < 0.001); BF and flow extraction product increased again on day 3 and 5, although without reaching statistically significant difference; and tumor volumes did not change significantly at all time points (P ≥ 0.3). In the control group, all 3 perfusion parameters did not change significantly, whereas tumor volume increased significantly at all the time points, compared with baseline (P ≤ 0.04). Ex vivo immunofluorescent staining showed good correlation between all 3 perfusion parameters and microvessel density (ρ=0.71, 0.66, and 0.69 for BF, BV, and flow extraction product, respectively; P < 0.001). There was a trend toward negative correlation between extent of hypoxia and all 3 perfusion parameters (ρ=-0.53, -0.47, and -0.40 for BF, BV, and flow extraction product, respectively; P ≥ 0.05).
CT perfusion allows a reproducible, noninvasive assessment of tumor vascularity in human colon cancer xenografts in mice. After antiangiogenic and radiation therapy, BF, BV, and flow extraction product significantly decrease and change faster than the tumor volume.

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