Magnetic resonance spectroscopic imaging in gliomas: clinical diagnosis and radiotherapy planning.
The reprogramming of cellular metabolism is a hallmark of cancer diagnosis and prognosis. Proton magnetic resonance spectroscopic imaging (MRSI) is a non-invasive diagnostic technique for investigating brain metabolism to establish cancer diagnosis and IDH gene mutation diagnosis as well as facilitate pre-operative planning and treatment response monitoring. By allowing tissue metabolism to be quantified, MRSI provides added value to conventional MRI. MRSI can generate metabolite maps from a single volume or multiple volume elements within the whole brain. Metabolites such as NAA, Cho and Cr, as well as their ratios Cho:NAA ratio and Cho:Cr ratio, have been used to provide tumor diagnosis and aid in radiation therapy planning as well as treatment assessment. In addition to these common metabolites, 2-hydroxygluterate (2HG) has also been quantified using MRSI following the recent discovery of IDH mutations in gliomas. This has opened up targeted drug development to inhibit the mutant IDH pathway. This review provides guidance on MRSI in brain gliomas, including its acquisition, analysis methods, and evolving clinical applications.