MRI hypoxia measurements

Stefanie Remmele, Ralph P. Mason, James P B O’Connor

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

4 Scopus citations


Tumor hypoxia is a key feature of solid tumors. It influences tumor growth, metastatic risk, and resistance to a number of important treatment strategies including radiation, chemotherapy, and thermal ablations. Accordingly, much effort has been spent on the development of noninvasive image-based measurements of tissue oxygenation. MR oxygenation measurements, in particular, are subject of extensive research, due to the favorable soft-tissue contrast, extensive availability, and lack of ionizing radiation, which is particularly beneficial in longitudinal or treatment follow-up studies. Information on tissue oxygenation can be derived from the MR relaxation parameters R2*, i.e., the reversible transverse relaxation rate, and R1, i.e., the longitudinal relaxation rate. Historically, the blood-oxygen-level-dependent (BOLD) imaging technique is the most prominent and frequently used. Oxygen-enhanced MRI R1- and/or R2*-weighted imaging or quantification is becoming increasingly popular, since it allows the separation of the effect of oxygenation on the relaxation properties from other influences and offers a novel contrast mechanism distinct from BOLD. Quantitative measurements of the oxygen partial pressure can be obtained from 19F imaging techniques and approaches that combine electron spin resonance (ESR) and Overhauser effects. Other methods are sensitive to hypoxia itself, but do not provide direct pO2estimates. This chapter elaborates on the methodology of different MR-based oxygenation measurements and presents exemplary results from their evaluation in oncologic applications. It concludes with a comparison of techniques and an outlook on their future role in oncology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationFunctional Imaging in Oncology
Subtitle of host publicationBiophysical Basis and Technical Approaches - Volume 1
PublisherSpringer Berlin Heidelberg
Number of pages21
ISBN (Electronic)9783642404122
ISBN (Print)9783642404115
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)


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