DataSheet_1_18F-FDG PET/CT Metrics Are Correlated to the Pathological Response in Esophageal Cancer Patients Treated With Induction Chemotherapy Followed by Neoadjuvant Chemo-Radiotherapy.docx
The aim of this study was to assess the ability of Fluorodeoxyglucose Positron Emission Tomography/Computed Tomography (18F-FDG PET/CT) to provide functional information useful in predicting pathological response to an intensive neoadjuvant chemo-radiotherapy (nCRT) protocol for both esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) and adenocarcinoma (ADC) patients.Material and Methods
Esophageal carcinoma (EC) patients, treated in our Center between 2014 and 2018, were retrospectively reviewed. The nCRT protocol schedule consisted of an induction phase of weekly administered docetaxel, cisplatin, and 5-fluorouracil (TCF) for 3 weeks, followed by a concomitant phase of weekly TCF for 5 weeks with concurrent radiotherapy (50–50.4 Gy in 25–28 fractions). Three 18F-FDG PET/CT scans were performed: before (PET1) and after (PET2) induction chemotherapy (IC), and prior to surgery (PET3). Correlation between PET parameters [maximum and mean standardized uptake value (SUVmax and SUVmean), metabolic tumor volume (MTV), and total lesion glycolysis (TLG)], radiomic features and tumor regression grade (TGR) was investigated.Results
Fifty-four patients (35 ADC, 19 SCC; 48 cT3/4; 52 cN+) were eligible for the analysis. Pathological response to nCRT was classified as major (TRG1-2, 41/54, 75.9%) or non-response (TRG3-4, 13/54, 24.1%). A major response was statistically correlated with SCC subtype (p = 0.02) and smaller tumor length (p = 0.03). MTV and TLG measured prior to IC (PET1) were correlated to TRG1-2 response (p = 0.02 and p = 0.02, respectively). After IC (PET2), SUVmean and TLG correlated with major response (p = 0.03 and p = 0.04, respectively). No significance was detected when relative changes of metabolic parameters between PET1 and PET2 were evaluated. At textural quantitative analysis, three independent radiomic features extracted from PET1 images ([JointEnergy and InverseDifferenceNormalized of GLCM and LowGrayLevelZoneEmphasis of GLSZM) were statistically correlated with major response (p < 0.0002).Conclusions
18F-FDG PET/CT traditional metrics and textural features seem to predict pathologic response (TRG) in EC patients treated with induction chemotherapy followed by neoadjuvant chemo-radiotherapy. Further investigations are necessary in order to obtain a reliable predictive model to be used in the clinical practice.
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