Predicting chemotherapeutic response for colorectal liver metastases using relative tumor enhancement of gadoxetic acid disodium-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging

  • Shinichi Murata
  • Shigeru Matsushima
  • Yozo Sato
  • Hidekazu Yamaura
  • Mina Kato
  • Takaaki Hasegawa
  • Kei Muro
  • Yoshitaka Inaba



This study aimed to predict the treatment response for colorectal liver metastases (CLM) using relative tumor enhancement (RTE) of the hepatobiliary phase (HBP) for patients with no history of chemotherapy.

Materials and methods

In this retrospective study, we enrolled 26 patients [14 males, 12 females; median age: 58 years (range 37–82 years)] with CLM and no history of chemotherapy between December 2011 and May 2017. Gadoxetic acid-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging was performed before starting chemotherapy and RTE of HBP. The response was evaluated using RECIST ver.1.1, and progression-free survival (PFS) was estimated.


Based on the RECIST ver.1.1, there were 15 responders and 11 non-responders. In the tumor, the mean pretreatment RTE values were significantly higher in the responders group than in the non-responders group (37.2% ± 10.9% vs. 17.9% ± 10.5%, respectively; P = 0.0006). When the threshold values of parameters for detecting responders comprised the RTE value of 24.2% (area under the curve value, 0.90), the sensitivity and specificity were 93.3% and 72.7%, respectively. The median follow-up period for 26 patients was 602 days (range 160–1971 days). Although no significant differences were observed in PFS between the groups, the high RTE group tended to take longer to progress than the low RTE group (PFS of the high RTE group did not reach the median).


This study suggests that the RTE value of CLM could be a potential biomarker to predict early treatment response.


MR Colorectal liver metastases Prediction Chemotherapy Biomarker Relative tumor enhancement 


Compliance with ethical standards


This study was funded by Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) KAKENHI (Grant Number JP16K19879).

Conflict of interest

All authors declare relevant conflicts of interest to disclose.

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed consent

The requirement for informed consent was waived by our Institutional Review Board.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Diagnostic and Interventional RadiologyAichi Cancer Center HospitalNagoyaJapan
  2. 2.Department of Medical OncologyAichi Cancer Center HospitalNagoyaJapan

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