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The Medical Imaging & Technology Alliance (MITA) has said that a new study published in the journal Nature Medicine on the use of magnetic resonance (MR) imaging to evaluate brain tumors underscores the value of advanced medical imaging in helping physicians evaluate the effectiveness of chemotherapy and readjust a patient's treatment plan as necessary.
"This study demonstrates the tremendous value of advanced medical imaging to guide optimal patient care and deliver more effective treatment," said Gail Rodriguez, Executive Director of MITA. "With a more sophisticated understanding of whether and when a patient's tumor is responding favorably to a particular therapy regimen, we are one step closer to truly personalized medicine: tailoring therapies to the patient -- and not wasting precious time or resources on less effective treatments."
Measurement and assessment of the size, shape and structure of a tumor in a patient with cancer is important for effective in vivo monitoring of disease progression and treatment response. Using vessel architectural imaging (VAI), a new method of analyzing data acquired through MR imaging, researchers from the Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) were able to identify changes in brain tumor blood vessels within days of the initiation of anti-angiogenesis therapy, and found that subjects with these responses had prolonged survival. Researchers were able to see the effects of therapy after just 28 days of treatment for most patients, with some showing results even just one day after their treatment began, suggesting that quickly identifying those whose tumors do not respond would allow for discontinuation of the ineffective therapy and exploration of other options.
Advanced MR techniques developed in recent years can determine numerous factors like the size, radius and capacity of blood vessels. VAI combines information from two types of advanced MR images and analyzes them in a way that distinguishes among small arteries, veins and capillaries, determines the radius of these vessels and shows how much oxygen is being delivered to tissues.
Support for the study includes numerous grants from the U.S. Public Health Service, the National Cancer Institute and other funders.
Article adapted by Medical News Today from original press release. Click 'references' tab above for source.
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11 Dec. 2013. <http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/265066>
MITA. (2013, August 21). "MITA: new study underscores value of medical imaging in treating cancer." Medical News Today. Retrieved from
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