Correlation of Ktrans derived from dynamic contrast-enhanced MRI with treatment response and survival in locally advanced NSCLC patients undergoing induction immunochemotherapy and concurrent chemoradiotherapy

June, 06, 2024 | Select Oncology Journal Articles


This study aimed to investigate the prognostic significance of pretreatment dynamic contrast-enhanced (DCE)-MRI parameters concerning tumor response following induction immunochemotherapy and survival outcomes in patients with locally advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) who underwent immunotherapy-based multimodal treatments.

Material and methods

Unresectable stage III NSCLC patients treated by induction immunochemotherapy, concurrent chemoradiotherapy (CCRT) with or without consolidative immunotherapy from two prospective clinical trials were screened. Using the two-compartment Extend Tofts model, the parameters including Ktrans, Kep, Ve, and Vp were calculated from DCE-MRI data. The apparent diffusion coefficient was calculated from diffusion-weighted-MRI data. The receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve and the area under the curve (AUC) were used to assess the predictive performance of MRI parameters. The Cox regression model was used for univariate and multivariate analysis.


111 unresectable stage III NSCLC patients were enrolled. Patients received two cycles of induction immunochemotherapy and CCRT, with or without consolidative immunotherapy. With the median follow-up of 22.3 months, the median progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS) were 16.3 and 23.8 months. The multivariate analysis suggested that Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group score, TNM stage and the response to induction immunochemotherapy were significantly related to both PFS and OS. After induction immunochemotherapy, 67 patients (59.8%) achieved complete response or partial response and 44 patients (40.2%) had stable disease or progressive disease. The Ktrans of primary lung tumor before induction immunochemotherapy yielded the best performance in predicting the treatment response, with an AUC of 0.800. Patients were categorized into two groups: high-Ktrans group (n=67, Ktrans>164.3x10–3/min) and low-Ktrans group (n=44, Ktrans≤164.3x10–3/min) based on the ROC analysis. The high-Ktrans group had a significantly higher objective response rate than the low-Ktrans group (85.1% (57/67) vs 22.7% (10/44), p<0.001). The high-Ktrans group also presented better PFS (median: 21.1 vs 11.3 months, p=0.002) and OS (median: 34.3 vs 15.6 months, p=0.035) than the low-Ktrans group.


Pretreatment Ktrans value emerged as a significant predictor of the early response to induction immunochemotherapy and survival outcomes in unresectable stage III NSCLC patients who underwent immunotherapy-based multimodal treatments. Elevated Ktrans values correlated positively with enhanced treatment response, leading to extended PFS and OS durations.

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