Respiratory-Correlated 4-Dimensional Magnetic Resonance Fingerprinting for Liver Cancer Radiation Therapy Motion Management

Chenyang Liu, Tian Li, Peng Cao, Edward S. Hui, Yat Lam Wong, Zuojun Wang, Haonan Xiao, Shaohua Zhi, Ta Zhou, Wen Li, Sai Kit Lam, Andy Lai Yin Cheung, Victor Ho Fun Lee, Michael Ying, Jing Cai

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: The objective of this study was to develop a respiratory-correlated (RC) 4-dimensional (4D) imaging technique based on magnetic resonance fingerprinting (MRF) (RC-4DMRF) for liver tumor motion management in radiation therapy. Methods and Materials: Thirteen patients with liver cancer were prospectively enrolled in this study. k-space MRF signals of the liver were acquired during free-breathing using the fast acquisition with steady-state precession sequence on a 3T scanner. The signals were binned into 8 respiratory phases based on respiratory surrogates, and interphase displacement vector fields were estimated using a phase-specific low-rank optimization method. Hereafter, the tissue property maps, including T1 and T2 relaxation times, and proton density, were reconstructed using a pyramid motion-compensated method that alternatively optimized interphase displacement vector fields and subspace images. To evaluate the efficacy of RC-4DMRF, amplitude motion differences and Pearson correlation coefficients were determined to assess measurement agreement in tumor motion between RC-4DMRF and cine magnetic resonance imaging (MRI); mean absolute percentage errors of the RC-4DMRF–derived tissue maps were calculated to reveal tissue quantification accuracy using digital human phantom; and tumor-to-liver contrast-to-noise ratio of RC-4DMRF images was compared with that of planning CT and contrast-enhanced MRI (CE-MRI) images. A paired Student t test was used for statistical significance analysis with a P value threshold of.05. Results: RC-4DMRF achieved excellent agreement in motion measurement with cine MRI, yielding the mean (± standard deviation) Pearson correlation coefficients of 0.95 ± 0.05 and 0.93 ± 0.09 and amplitude motion differences of 1.48 ± 1.06 mm and 0.81 ± 0.64 mm in the superior-inferior and anterior-posterior directions, respectively. Moreover, RC-4DMRF achieved high accuracy in tissue property quantification, with mean absolute percentage errors of 8.8%, 9.6%, and 5.0% for T1, T2, and proton density, respectively. Notably, the tumor contrast-to-noise ratio in RC-4DMRI–derived T1 maps (6.41 ± 3.37) was found to be the highest among all tissue property maps, approximately equal to that of CE-MRI (6.96 ± 1.01, P =.862), and substantially higher than that of planning CT (2.91 ± 1.97, P =.048). Conclusions: RC-4DMRF demonstrated high accuracy in respiratory motion measurement and tissue properties quantification, potentially facilitating tumor motion management in liver radiation therapy.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology Physics
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2023

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiation
  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cancer Research


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