This multicenter study evaluated the effect of variations in arterial input function (AIF) determination on pharmacokinetic (PK) analysis of dynamic contrast-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging (DCE-MRI) data using the shutter-speed model (SSM). Data acquired from eleven prostate cancer patients were shared among nine centers. Each center used a site-specific method to measure the individual AIF from each data set and submitted the results to the managing center. These AIFs, their reference tissue-adjusted variants, and a literature population-averaged AIF, were used by the managing center to perform SSM PK analysis to estimate Ktrans (volume transfer rate constant), ve (extravascular, extracellular volume fraction), kep (efflux rate constant), andi (mean intracellular water lifetime). All other variables, including the definition of the tumor region of interest and precontrast T1 values, were kept the same to evaluate parameter variations caused by variations in only the AIF. Considerable PK parameter variations were observed with within-subject coefficient of variation (wCV) values of 0.58, 0.27, 0.42, and 0.24 for Ktrans, ve, kep, andi, respectively, using the unadjusted AIFs. Use of the reference tissue-adjusted AIFs reduced variations in Ktrans and ve (wCV = 0.50 and 0.10, respectively), but had smaller effects on kep andi (wCV = 0.39 and 0.22, respectively). kep is less sensitive to AIF variation than Ktrans, suggesting it may be a more robust imaging biomarker of prostate microvascula-ture. With low sensitivity to AIF uncertainty, the SSM-uniquei parameter may have advantages over the conventional PK parameters in a longitudinal study.
- Arterial input function
- Shutter-speed model
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging