Prostate cancer ranks as the most common lethal malignancy diagnosed and the second leading cause of cancer mortality in American men. Although high response rates are achieved using androgen blockade as first-line therapy, most men progress toward hormone-refractory prostate cancer. Systemic chemotherapies have been shown to improve clinical outcome in hormone refractory prostate cancer patients; however, they are not curative. Due to the high incidence of bone involvement in hormone-refractory prostate cancer, assessment of treatment response in metastatic prostate cancer to the bone remains a major clinical need. In this current study, we investigated the feasibility of using the functional diffusion map (fDM) as an imaging biomarker for assessing early treatment response in a preclinical model of metastatic prostate cancer. The fDM biomarker requires a pretreatment and midtreatment magnetic resonance imaging diffusion map, which is used to quantify spatially distinct therapeutic-induced changes in the Brownian motion (or diffusion) of water within tumor tissue. Because water within tumor cells is in a restricted environment relative to extracellular water, loss of cell membrane integrity and cellular density during therapy will be detected by fDM as an increase in diffusion. Regions of significantly increased diffusion values were detected early using fDM in docetaxel-treated versus untreated metastatic prostate bone tumors at 7 days post treatment initiation (P < 0.05), indicating loss of tumor cell viability. Validation of fDM results was accomplished by histologic analysis of excised tissue. Results from this study show the capability of fDM as a biomarker for detection of bone cancer treatment efficacy, thus warranting clinical evaluation.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research