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Abstract #5380

Towards a ‘resolution limit’ for DW-MRI tumour microstructural models: what microstructural changes can be distinguished?

Damien J. McHugh1,2 and Geoffrey J. M. Parker1,2,3

1Informatics, Imaging and Data Sciences, The University of Manchester, Manchester, United Kingdom, 2CRUK and EPSRC Cancer Imaging Centre in Cambridge and Manchester, Manchester, United Kingdom, 3Bioxydyn Ltd., Manchester, United Kingdom

The ability to detect specific changes in tumour tissue using diffusion-weighted (DW) MRI microstructural models depends on the accuracy and precision of parameter estimates, as well as the magnitude of specific biological changes. This work investigates the SNR requirements that data must meet in order to yield sufficiently precise estimates for detecting apoptotic cell shrinkage. Given the relative changes in cell size, R, and intracellular volume fraction, fi, as a result of apoptosis, simulations indicate that detecting changes in R require ~4-fold higher SNR than detecting changes in fi. Comparing the magnitude of biological changes with measurement accuracy and precision should form part of the validation process for potential biomarkers.

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