Journal Article Identifying Triple-Negative Breast Cancer Using Background Parenchymal Enhancement Heterogeneity on Dynamic Contrast-Enhanced MRI : A Pilot Radiomics Study

Wang, Jeff  ,  Kato, Fumi  ,  Oyama-Manabe, Noriko  ,  Li, Ruijiang  ,  Cui, Yi  ,  Tha, Khin Khin  ,  Yamashita, Hiroko  ,  Kudo, Kohsuke  ,  Shirato, Hiroki

10 ( 11 )  , p.e0143308 , 2015-11-24 , PLOS
Objectives: To determine the added discriminative value of detailed quantitative characterization of background parenchymal enhancement in addition to the tumor itself on dynamic contrast-enhanced (DCE) MRI at 3.0 Tesla in identifying "triple-negative" breast cancers. Materials and Methods: In this Institutional Review Board-approved retrospective study, DCE-MRI of 84 women presenting 88 invasive carcinomas were evaluated by a radiologist and analyzed using quantitative computer-aided techniques. Each tumor and its surrounding parenchyma were segmented semi-automatically in 3-D. A total of 85 imaging features were extracted from the two regions, including morphologic, densitometric, and statistical texture measures of enhancement. A small subset of optimal features was selected using an efficient sequential forward floating search algorithm. To distinguish triple-negative cancers from other sub-types, we built predictive models based on support vector machines. Their classification performance was assessed with the area under receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) using cross-validation. Results: Imaging features based on the tumor region achieved an AUC of 0.782 in differentiating triple-negative cancers from others, in line with the current state of the art. When background parenchymal enhancement features were included, the AUC increased significantly to 0.878 (p<0.01). Similar improvements were seen in nearly all subtype classification tasks undertaken. Notably, amongst the most discriminating features for predicting triple-negative cancers were textures of background parenchymal enhancement. Conclusions: Considering the tumor as well as its surrounding parenchyma on DCE-MRI for radiomic image phenotyping provides useful information for identifying triple-negative breast cancers. Heterogeneity of background parenchymal enhancement, characterized by quantitative texture features on DCE-MRI, adds value to such differentiation models as they are strongly associated with the triple-negative subtype. Prospective validation studies are warranted to confirm these findings and determine potential implications.

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