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Tracy R. McKnight, Mary H. von dem Bussche, Daniel B. Vigneron, Ying Lu, Mitchel S. Berger, Michael W. McDermott, William P. Dillon, Edward E. Graves, Andrea Pirzkall, and Sarah J. Nelson

Object. Data obtained preoperatively from three-dimensional (3D)/proton magnetic resonance (MR) spectroscopy were compared with the results of histopathological assays of tissue biopsies obtained during surgery to verify the sensitivity and specificity of a choline-containing compound—N-acetylaspartate index (CNI) used to distinguish tumor from nontumorous tissue within T2 hyperintense and contrast-enhancing lesions of patients with untreated gliomas. The information gleaned from the biopsy correlation study was used to test the hypothesis that there is metabolically active tumor in nonenhancing regions of the T2-hyperintense lesion that can be detected using MR spectroscopy.

Methods. Patients suspected of harboring a glioma underwent 3D MR spectroscopy during their preoperative MR imaging examination. Surgical navigation techniques were used to record the location of tissue biopsies collected during open resection of the tumor. A receiver operating curve analysis of the CNI and histological characteristics of specimens at each biopsy location was performed to determine the optimal threshold of the CNI required to separate tumor from nontumorous tissue. Histograms of the CNIs within enhancing and nonenhancing regions of lesions appearing on MR images were generated to determine the spatial distribution of CNIs consistent with tumor.

Conclusions. Biopsy samples containing tumor were distinguished from those containing a mixture of normal, edematous, gliotic, and necrotic tissue with 90% sensitivity and 86% specificity by using a CNI threshold of 2.5. The CNIs of nontumorous specimens were significantly different from those of biopsy specimens containing Grade II (p < 0.03), Grade III (p < 0.005), and Grade IV (p < 0.01) tumors. On average, one third to one half of the T2-hyperintense lesion outside the contrast-enhancing lesion contained CNI greater than 2.5.

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Antoinette A. Chan, Aubrey Lau, Andrea Pirzkall, Susan M. Chang, Lynn J. Verhey, David Larson, Michael W. McDermott, William P. Dillon, and Sarah J. Nelson

Object. The purpose of this study was to assess the differences in spatial extent and metabolic activity in a comparison of a radiosurgical target defined by conventional strategies that utilize the enhancing lesion and a metabolic lesion defined by proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) imaging. The authors evaluated whether these differences manifest themselves in the clinical outcome of patients and assessed the value of incorporating 1H-MRS imaging—derived spatial information into the treatment planning process for gamma knife surgery (GKS).

Methods. Twenty-six patients harboring Grade IV gliomas who had previously been treated with external-beam radiation therapy were evaluated by comparing the radiosurgically treated lesion volume with the volume of metabolically active tumor defined on 1H-MRS imaging. The cohort was evenly divided into two groups based on the percentage of overlap between the radiosurgical target and the metabolic lesion volumes. Patients with a percentage of overlap greater than 50% with respect to the metabolic lesion volume were classified as low risk and those with an overlap less than 50% were classified as high risk.

Kaplan—Meier estimators were calculated using time to progression and survival as dependent variables. The metabolite levels within the metabolic lesion were significantly greater than those within the radiosurgical target (p ≤ 0.001). The median survival was 15.7 months for patients in the low-risk group and 10.4 months for those in the highrisk group. This difference was statistically significant (p < 0.01).

Conclusions. Analysis of the results of this study indicates that patients undergoing GKS may benefit from the inclusion of 1H-MRS imaging in the treatment planning process.