Development and Validation of an MRI-Based Radiomics Signature for the Preoperative Prediction of Lymph Node Metastasis in Bladder Cancer

Preoperative lymph node (LN) status is important for the treatment of bladder cancer (BCa). However, a proportion of patients are at high risk for inaccurate clinical nodal staging by current methods. Here, we report an accurate magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)-based radiomics signature for the individual preoperative prediction of LN metastasis in BCa.

In total, 103 eligible BCa patients were divided into a training set (n = 69) and a validation set (n = 34). And 718 radiomics features were extracted from the cancerous volumes of interest (VOIs) on T2-weighted MRI images. A radiomics signature was constructed using the least absolute shrinkage and selection operator (LASSO) algorithm in the training set, whose performance was assessed and then validated in the validation set. Stratified analyses were also performed. Based on the multivariable logistic regression analysis, a radiomics nomogram was developed incorporating the radiomics signature and selected clinical predictors. Discrimination, calibration and clinical usefulness of the nomogram were assessed.

Consisting of 9 selected features, the radiomics signature showed a favorable discriminatory ability in the training set with an AUC of 0.9005, which was confirmed in the validation set with an AUC of 0.8447. Encouragingly, the radiomics signature also showed good discrimination in the MRI-reported LN negative (cN0) subgroup (AUC, 0.8406). The nomogram, consisting of the radiomics signature and the MRI-reported LN status, showed good calibration and discrimination in the training and validation sets (AUC, 0.9118 and 0.8902, respectively). The decision curve analysis indicated that the nomogram was clinically useful.

The MRI-based radiomics nomogram has the potential to be used as a non-invasive tool for individualized preoperative prediction of LN metastasis in BCa. External validation is further required prior to clinical implementation.

EBioMedicine. 2018 Aug 02 [Epub ahead of print]

Shaoxu Wu, Junjiong Zheng, Yong Li, Zhuo Wu, Siya Shi, Ming Huang, Hao Yu, Wen Dong, Jian Huang, Tianxin Lin

Department of Urology, Sun Yat-Sen Memorial Hospital, Sun Yat-Sen University, Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Malignant Tumor Epigenetics and Gene Regulation, Guangzhou, PR China., Department of Radiology, Sun Yat-Sen Memorial Hospital, Sun Yat-Sen University, Guangzhou, PR China., Department of Urology, Sun Yat-Sen Memorial Hospital, Sun Yat-Sen University, Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Malignant Tumor Epigenetics and Gene Regulation, Guangzhou, PR China; State Key Laboratory of Oncology in South China, PR China. Electronic address: .