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Diffusion Kurtosis Imaging Reflects Glial Fibrillary Acidic Protein (GFAP), Topo IIα, and O⁶-Methylguanine-DNA Methyltransferase (MGMT) Expression in Astrocytomas

Xiao-chun Wang, Ying Lei, Le Wang, Yan Tan, Jiang-bo Qin, Guo-lin Ma, Hui Zhang

(Department of Radiology, First Clinical Medical College, Shanxi Medical University, Taiyuan, Shanxi, China (mainland))

Med Sci Monit 2018; 24:8822-8830

DOI: 10.12659/MSM.911631

BACKGROUND: Astrocytomas are the most common primary brain neoplasms. Biological indicators of astrocytomas can reflect its biological characteristics. The aim of this study was to assess the expression of the pathological glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) Topo IIα and O⁶-methylguanine-DNA methyltransferase (MGMT) in astrocytomas using magnetic resonance (MR) diffusion kurtosis imaging (DKI) to evaluate the biological characteristics of astrocytomas.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: Sixty-six patients with pathologically proven astrocytomas were enrolled in this study. All patients underwent conventional MRI head scanning, DKI scanning, and enhanced scanning under the same conditions. Spearman’s rank correlation analysis and Bonferroni correction were used to compare the values of DKI and the expression levels of GFAP, Topo IIα, and MGMT between the 2 groups.
RESULTS: Mean kurtosis (MK) values were negatively correlated with the expression of GFAP (r=–0.836; P=0.03). However, these were positively correlated with the expression of Topo IIα (r=0.896; P=0.01). Moreover, fractional anisotropy (FA) values were not correlated with the expression of GFAP (r=0.366; P=0.05), Topo IIα (r=–0.562; P=0.05), or MGMT (r=–0.153; P=0.10).
CONCLUSIONS: MK was significantly associated with the expression of GFAP and Topo IIα. To a certain extent, applying DKI may show the biological behavior of tumor cell differentiation, proliferation activity, invasion, and metastasis, and guide individual treatment.

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