Potential of Gd-EOB-DTPA as an Imaging Biomarker for Liver Injury Estimation After Radiation Therapy

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Hepatobiliary and Pancreatic Diseases International

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Background: Hepatic radiation injury severely restricts irradiation treatment for liver carcinoma. The purpose of this study was to investigate the clinical application of gadolinium ethoxybenzyl diethylenetriamine pentaacetic acid (Gd-EOB-DTPA)-enhanced MRI (EOB-MRI) in the assessment of liver function after external radiation therapy and to determine the relationship between focal liver reaction (FLR) and liver function. Methods: A total of 47 patients with liver malignancies who underwent external beam radiation therapy were enrolled. EOB-MRI was performed on each patient at approximately one month post-radiotherapy. The hepatobiliary (HPB) phase images from EOB-MRI were fused with the planning CT images, and the isodose lines from the patients’ treatment plans were overlaid onto the fused images. The correlation of the EOB-MR image intensity distribution with the isodose lines was studied. We also compared liver function in patients between pre-treatment and post-treatment. Results: Decreased uptake of Gd-EOB-DTPA, which was manifested by well-demarcated focal hypointensity of the liver parenchyma or FLR to high-dose radiation, was observed in the irradiated areas of 38 patients. The radiotherapy isodose line of decreased uptake area of Gd-EOB-DTPA was 30–46 Gy. The median corresponding dose curve of FLR was 34.4 Gy. Nine patients showed the absence of decreased uptake area of Gd-EOB-DTPA in the irradiated areas. Compared to the 38 patients with the presence of decreased uptake area of Gd-EOB-DTPA, 9 patients with the absence of decreased uptake area of Gd-EOB-DTPA showed significant higher levels of total bile acid, total bilirubin, direct bilirubin and alpha-fetoprotein (P < 0.05). There were no significant differences in alanine transaminase, aspartate aminotransferase, gamma-glutamyl transpeptidase or albumin levels between the two groups (P > 0.05). Conclusions: Visible uptake of Gd-EOB-DTPA by the liver parenchyma was significantly associated with liver function parameters. EOB-MRI can be a valuable imaging biomarker for the assessment of liver parenchyma function outside of radiation area.


MRI biomarker; Radiation-induced liver disease; Liver carcinoma


Diseases | Hepatology | Investigative Techniques | Therapeutics



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