Early magnetic resonance imaging biomarkers to predict local control after high dose stereotactic body radiotherapy for patients with sarcoma spine metastases

Daniel E. Spratt, Julio Arevalo-Perez, Jonathan E. Leeman, Naamit K. Gerber, Michael Folkert, Neil K. Taunk, Kaled M. Alektiar, Sasan Karimi, John K. Lyo, William D. Tap, Mark H. Bilsky, Ilya Laufer, Yoshiya Yamada, Joseph R. Osborne

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Background Context Recent advances in image guidance and stereotactic body radiotherapy (SBRT) have resulted in unprecedented local control for spinal metastases of all histologies. However, little is known about early imaging biomarkers of local control. Purpose This study aimed to identify early magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) biomarkers to predict local control after SBRT for patients with sarcoma spine metastases. Study Design/Setting This study used a retrospective case series at a large tertiary cancer center. Patient Sample From 2011 to 2014, 9 consecutive patients with 12 metastatic sarcoma lesions to the spine were treated with SBRT and underwent evaluation with dynamic contrast-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging (DCE-MRI) both pre- and post-SBRT. Outcome Measure Changes in perfusion metrics, including the wash-in rate constant (Ktrans), plasma volume (Vp), composite multiparametric magnetic resonance imaging (mpMRI) score, bi-dimensional tumor size, and a graded response assessment were performed and correlated to local control. Methods All measurements were independent and blinded by two neuroradiologists. R2 statistics were performed to document correlation, and two-tailed t tests were used to compare groups. p<.05 was deemed statistically significant. Results The median time from SBRT until posttreatment MRI was 57 days. Local failure developed in one lesion (8.3%) 10 months after SBRT. The Vp mean, Ktrans mean, Vp max, and Ktrans max were significantly decreased post-SBRT as compared with pre-SBRT (58.7%, 63.2%, 59.0%, and 55.2%; all p-values <.05). Bi-dimensional tumor measurements demonstrated an average increase in size across the cohort, and 50%, 25%, and 25% of the treated lesions demonstrated features of "worsening," "no change," or "improvement," respectively, by both radiologists' graded impressions. There was good inter-reader reliability for both size and subjective disease response scores (R2=0.84). The mpMRI score had 100% accuracy in predicting local control at time of last follow-up. There was no apparent correlation with size changes compared with the mpMRI score change post-SBRT (R2=0.026). Conclusions We report the first analysis on the utility of DCE-MRI for metastatic sarcoma spine metastases treated with SBRT. We demonstrate that early assessment at 2 months post-SBRT using size and subjective neuroradiology impressions is insufficient to judge ultimate disease progression, and that a combination of perfusion parameters provides excellent correlation to local control.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)291-298
Number of pages8
JournalSpine Journal
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2016


  • Imaging
  • MRI
  • Metastases
  • Radiotherapy
  • Sarcoma
  • Spine
  • Stereotactic radiotherapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Clinical Neurology


Dive into the research topics of 'Early magnetic resonance imaging biomarkers to predict local control after high dose stereotactic body radiotherapy for patients with sarcoma spine metastases'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this