Project: Research project

Project Details


Background: Prostate cancer (PCa) is the second leading cause of cancer death in men after lung cancer. Approximately one in nine men will be diagnosed with PCa in their lifetime. The majority of cancers are detected in the local or regional stages, and when treated promptly, the 5-year relative survival rate approaches 100%. Thus, the prevalence of PCa is very high, and the incidence of death resulting from PCa is also very high, but when detected and treated, the savings to society in terms of high survival is also very high. A further complication in assessing PCa is that it is difficult to differentiate aggressive from non-aggressive disease. Thus, the motivation of this project is to develop improved means for detecting PCa with the potential for providing improved differentiation of disease aggressiveness.Hypothesis: The hypothesis is that dynamic whole-volume contrast-enhanced perfusion imaging of the prostate gland can be performed with 1 mm isotropic spatial resolution and 2 sec frame times. Combining the improvements in X, Y, Z spatial resolution and reduction in frame time will be an order of magnitude improvement over current techniques.Specific Aims: The specific aims are:(1) MRI Data Acquisition Method: We will adapt the data acquisition technique used for time-resolved contrast-enhanced magnetic resonance (MR) angiography (CE-MRA) to time-resolved 3D MR imaging (MRI) of the prostate. This will require undersampling and randomization of the k-space periphery and effective data sharing from frame to frame.(2) Receiver Coil Development: Based on our extensive experience with circumferentially oriented coils having variable sensitivities along the transverse direction, we will develop a fundamentally new coil element family having variable sensitivity along the superior-to-inferior direction. This will allow significant undersampling of the axially-acquired MRI data, particularly critical in high-speed prostate MRI.(3) Reconstruction Techniques: We will adapt partial Fourier, acceleration, acceleration optimization methods to provide high-quality 3D images in real time at frame times of 2 sec or less. In the future, the high fidelity of the data is expected to allow time-related biomarkers to be determined accurately on a pixel-by-pixel basis. Study Design: Throughout this project, we will evaluate the step-wise improvements in each aim in phantom studies and in a limited number of prostate MRI exams in patients. This patient group is growing rapidly within our institution.Impact: The improved performance is expected to (a) allow improved detection of PCa; (b) potentially allow for larger numbers of men to be imaged and tested for PCa; (c) as a consequence of (a) and (b) provide reduced rate of deaths per 100,000 population due to PCa; (d) allow potential for improved precision and thus improved differentiation between aggressive and indolent forms of PCa. The 10-fold increase in spatial-temporal resolution is expected to bring the sensitivity of these biomarkers to heretofore unattained levels. Performance will allow high detail (1 mm isotropic) imaging of the prostate with sub-second precision in estimation of time parameters. Measuring aggressiveness at this level will result in more precise treatment and better outcomes.

Effective start/end date8/15/158/14/18


  • Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs: $563,055.00


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