Perfusion CT Vascular Parameters Do Not Correlate with Immunohistochemically Derived Microvessel Density Count in Colorectal Tumors

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We could not demonstrate any consistent correlation between any of the perfusion CT–derived vascular parameters in colorectal tumors and the microvessel density count obtained from immunohistochemical staining with factor VIII and CD105 antibodies.


To determine whether perfusion computed tomography (CT)-derived vascular parameters—namely, blood flow, mean transit time (MTT), volume transfer constant (Ktrans), permeability–surface area product (PS), extracellular extravascular space volume, and vascular volume—correlate with the immunohistologic markers of angiogenesis in colorectal tumors.

Materials and Methods

This prospective study was approved by the Regional Ethics and Research and Development Committees. The perfusion CT protocol was incorporated in the staging CT after informed consent in 29 patients (14 men, 15 women; mean age, 70 years; age range, 55–94 years). The perfusion parameters were calculated over two regions of interest (ROIs), at the invasive and luminal site defined by two radiologists independently. Accurate representative data were captured manually by correcting for motion artifacts and were analyzed by using Matlab software. The vascular heterogeneity between ROIs was assessed by using the Wilcoxon signed rank test. Perfusion CT parameters were correlated with the microvessel density (MVD) count at both corresponding sites obtained by means of immunohistochemical staining of the selected histologic slide with factor VIII and CD105 antigens by using Spearmen rank coefficient.


There was no statistically significant difference found between perfusion CT vascular parameters at the two ROIs by either of the radiologists. The Pearson coefficient for blood flow, MTT, Ktrans, and PS at the two ROIs demonstrated good to moderate interobserver variability (for the two ROIs, 0.46 and 0.44; 0.67 and 0.64; 0.41 and 0.72; and 0.86 and 0.56, respectively). None of these parameters correlated with MVD count at the invasive or the luminal site for either of the two antigens.


Perfusion CT measurements may measure vascularity of colorectal tumors, however, correlation with MVD, which is a morphologic measure, appears inappropriate.

© RSNA, 2013


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Article History

Received December 13, 2011; revision requested January 26, 2012; revision received October 22; accepted December 7; final version accepted January 17, 2013.
Published online: Aug 2013
Published in print: Aug 2013