The associated research paper, published in Pediatric Radiology, has won an award for basic science that has the potential for significant clinical impact.
Brain tumours are the most common cause of cancer death in children but predicting tumour aggressiveness before a biopsy is challenging. It is well known that tumours have an abnormal blood supply and that this can be measured by MRI scans used routinely in children. However, achieving this in clinical practice has remained elusive largely due to problems with reproducibility between different centres and large changes in blood flow with the child’s age.
A key component of the study was allowing for blood vessel leakiness, which is itself a useful biomarker. The analysis method will now be available in a computerised clinical decision support system so that patients can benefit from this important advance.
The images show a conventional MRI scan of a tumour on the left. MRI with a contrast agent shows a high blood volume in the centre image. After correction, the image on the right shows a high level of leakiness, which this study demonstrated is a feature associated with aggressive tumours.
The paper was awarded the Thomas L. Slovis Award for the Best Basic Science Paper appearing in Pediatric Radiology in 2022. This award is given by the Society for Pediatric Radiology and has a far-reaching audience of practicing paediatric radiologists. It is therefore an important indicator of the potential for an advance to make a high impact in clinical practice.
Pediatric Radioliology 52:1134-1149 (2022). Withey SB, L MacPherson, A Oates, S Powell, J Novak, L Abernethy, . . . AC Peet. Dynamic susceptibility-contrast magnetic resonance imaging with contrast agent leakage correction aids in predicting grade in pediatric brain tumours: a multicenter study.