Hyperpolarized 3He Magnetic Resonance Imaging. Comparison with Four-dimensional X-ray Computed Tomography Imaging in Lung Cancer

Lindsay Mathew, Andrew Wheatley, Richard Castillo, Edward Castillo, George Rodrigues, Thomas Guerrero, Grace Parraga

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

75 Scopus citations


Rationale and Objectives: Pulmonary functional imaging using four-dimensional x-ray computed tomographic (4DCT) imaging and hyperpolarized 3He magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) provides regional lung function estimates in patients with lung cancer in whom pulmonary function measurements are typically dominated by tumor burden. The aim of this study was to evaluate the quantitative spatial relationship between 4DCT and hyperpolarized 3He MRI ventilation maps. Materials and Methods: Eleven patients with lung cancer provided written informed consent to 4DCT imaging and MRI performed within 11 ± 14 days. Hyperpolarized 3He MRI was acquired in breath-hold after inhalation from functional residual capacity of 1 L hyperpolarized 3He, whereas 4DCT imaging was acquired over a single tidal breath of room air. For hyperpolarized 3He MRI, the percentage ventilated volume was generated using semiautomated segmentation; for 4DCT imaging, pulmonary function maps were generated using the correspondence between identical tissue elements at inspiratory and expiratory phases to generate percentage ventilated volume. Results: After accounting for differences in image acquisition lung volumes (3He MRI: 1.9 ± 0.5 L ipsilateral, 2.3 ± 0.7 L contralateral; 4DCT imaging: 1.2 ± 0.3 L ipsilateral, 1.3 ± 0.4 L contralateral), there was no significant difference in percentage ventilated volume between hyperpolarized 3He MRI (72 ± 11% ipsilateral, 79 ± 12% contralateral) and 4DCT imaging (74 ± 3% ipsilateral, 75 ± 4% contralateral). Spatial correspondence between 4DCT and 3He MRI ventilation was evaluated using the Dice similarity coefficient index (ipsilateral, 86 ± 12%; contralateral, 88 ± 12%). Conclusions: Despite rather large differences in image acquisition breathing maneuvers, good spatial and significant quantitative agreement was observed for ventilation maps on hyperpolarized 3He MRI and 4DCT imaging, suggesting that pulmonary regions with good lung function are similar between modalities in this small group of patients with lung cancer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1546-1553
Number of pages8
JournalAcademic Radiology
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Four-dimensional computed tomography
  • Functional lung imaging
  • Hyperpolarized He magnetic resonance imaging
  • Ventilated volume
  • Ventilation defect

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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