MO-G-BRF-01: BEST IN PHYSICS (JOINT IMAGING-THERAPY) – Sensitivity of PET-Based Texture Features to Respiratory Motion in Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer (NSCLC)




PET-based texture features are used to quantify tumor heterogeneity due to their predictive power in treatment outcome. We investigated the sensitivity of texture features to tumor motion by comparing whole body (3D) and respiratory-gated (4D) PET imaging.


Twenty-six patients (34 lesions) received 3D and 4D [F-18]FDG-PET scans before chemo-radiotherapy. The acquired 4D data were retrospectively binned into five breathing phases to create the 4D image sequence. Four texture features (Coarseness, Contrast, Busyness, and Complexity) were computed within the the physician-defined tumor volume. The relative difference (δ) in each measure between the 3D- and 4D-PET imaging was calculated. Wilcoxon signed-rank test (p<0.01) was used to determine if δ was significantly different from zero. Coefficient of variation (CV) was used to determine the variability in the texture features between all 4D-PET phases. Pearson correlation coefficient was used to investigate the impact of tumor size and motion amplitude on δ.


Significant differences (p<<0.01) between 3D and 4D imaging were found for Coarseness, Busyness, and Complexity. The difference for Contrast was not significant (p>0.24). 4D-PET increased Busyness (∼20%) and Complexity (∼20%), and decreased Coarseness (∼10%) and Contrast (∼5%) compared to 3D-PET. Nearly negligible variability (CV=3.9%) was found between the 4D phase bins for Coarseness and Complexity. Moderate variability was found for Contrast and Busyness (CV∼10%). Poor correlation was found between the tumor volume and δ for the texture features (R=−0.34−0.34). Motion amplitude had moderate impact on δ for Contrast and Busyness (R=−0.64− 0.54) and no impact for Coarseness and Complexity (R=−0.29−0.17).


Substantial differences in textures were found between 3D and 4D-PET imaging. Moreover, the variability between phase bins for Coarseness and Complexity was negligible, suggesting that similar quantification can be obtained from all phases. Texture features, blurred out by respiratory motion during 3D-PET acquisition, can be better resolved by 4D-PET imaging with any phase.