Multiparametric MRI as a Biomarker of Response to Neoadjuvant Therapy for Localized Prostate Cancer-A Pilot Study


To explore a role for multiparametric MRI (mpMRI) as a biomarker of response to neoadjuvant androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) for prostate cancer (PCa).


This prospective study was approved by the institutional review board and was HIPAA compliant. Eight patients with localized PCa had a baseline mpMRI, repeated after 6-months of ADT, followed by prostatectomy. mpMRI indices were extracted from tumor and normal regions of interest (TROI/NROI). Residual cancer burden (RCB) was measured on mpMRI and on the prostatectomy specimen. Paired t-tests compared TROI/NROI mpMRI indices and pre/post-treatment TROI mpMRI indices. Spearman’s rank tested for correlations between MRI/pathology-based RCB, and between pathological RCB and mpMRI indices.


At baseline, TROI apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) was lower and dynamic contrast enhanced (DCE) metrics were higher, compared to NROI (ADC: 806 ± 137 × 10-6 vs. 1277 ± 213 × 10-6 mm2/sec, p = 0.0005; Ktrans: 0.346 ± 0.16 vs. 0.144 ± 0.06 min-1, p = 0.002; AUC90: 0.213 ± 0.08 vs. 0.11 ± 0.03, p = 0.002). Post-treatment, there was no change in TROI ADC, but a decrease in TROI Ktrans (0.346 ± 0.16 to 0.188 ± 0.08 min-1; p = 0.02) and AUC90 (0.213 ± 0.08 to 0.13 ± 0.06; p = 0.02). Tumor volume decreased with ADT. There was no difference between mpMRI-based and pathology-based RCB, which positively correlated (⍴ = 0.74-0.81, p < 0.05). Pathology-based RCB positively correlated with post-treatment DCE metrics (⍴ = 0.76-0.70, p < 0.05) and negatively with ADC (⍴ = -0.79, p = 0.03).


Given the heterogeneity of PCa, an individualized approach to ADT may maximize potential benefit. This pilot study suggests that mpMRI may serve as a biomarker of ADT response and as a surrogate for RCB at prostatectomy.

 2019 Dec 17. pii: S1076-6332(19)30531-8. doi: 10.1016/j.acra.2019.10.017. [Epub ahead of print]