Grading diffuse gliomas without intense contrast enhancement by amide proton transfer MR imaging: comparisons with diffusion- and perfusion-weighted imaging

Osamu Togao, Akio Hiwatashi, Koji Yamashita, Kazufumi Kikuchi, Jochen Keupp, Koji Yoshimoto, Daisuke Kuga, Masami Yoneyama, Satoshi O. Suzuki, Toru Iwaki, Masaya Takahashi, Koji Iihara, Hiroshi Honda

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

29 Scopus citations


Objectives: To investigate whether amide proton transfer (APT) MR imaging can differentiate high-grade gliomas (HGGs) from low-grade gliomas (LGGs) among gliomas without intense contrast enhancement (CE). Methods: This retrospective study evaluated 34 patients (22 males, 12 females; age 36.0 ± 11.3 years) including 20 with LGGs and 14 with HGGs, all scanned on a 3T MR scanner. Only tumours without intense CE were included. Two neuroradiologists independently performed histogram analyses to measure the 90th-percentile (APT90) and mean (APTmean) of the tumours’ APT signals. The apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) and relative cerebral blood volume (rCBV) were also measured. The parameters were compared between the groups with Student’s t-test. Diagnostic performance was evaluated with receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analysis. Results: The APT90 (2.80 ± 0.59 % in LGGs, 3.72 ± 0.89 in HGGs, P = 0.001) and APTmean (1.87 ± 0.49 % in LGGs, 2.70 ± 0.58 in HGGs, P = 0.0001) were significantly larger in the HGGs compared to the LGGs. The ADC and rCBV values were not significantly different between the groups. Both the APT90 and APTmean showed medium diagnostic performance in this discrimination. Conclusions: APT imaging is useful in discriminating HGGs from LGGs among diffuse gliomas without intense CE. Key Points: • Amide proton transfer (APT) imaging helps in grading non-enhancing gliomas• High-grade gliomas showed higher APT signal than low-grade gliomas• APT imaging showed better diagnostic performance than diffusion- and perfusion-weighted imaging

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
JournalEuropean Radiology
Publication statusAccepted/In press - Mar 22 2016



  • Amide proton transfer imaging
  • Brain tumour
  • Chemical exchange saturation transfer
  • Glioma
  • MR imaging

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging

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