T1 relaxation times and MR elastography-derived stiffness: new potential imaging biomarkers for the assessment of chronic pancreatitis

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Purpose: Non-invasive imaging methods to detect morphological changes of the pancreas in patients with mild chronic pancreatitis (CP) are needed. This study aimed to compare magnetic resonance imaging-based parameters, pancreatic volume, T1 mapping, magnetic resonance elastography (MRE), and proton density fat fraction between CP patients and controls, and determine the diagnostic performance for diagnosing different stages of CP. Methods: Nineteen patients with mild CP (Cambridge grade 2 or less or recurring acute pancreatitis; n = 19), 30 with moderate/severe CP (Cambridge grade 3 and 4), and 35 healthy controls underwent pancreatic magnetic resonance imaging to assess the above mentioned magnetic resonance imaging-based parameters. The diagnostic performance of each parameter for detecting any mild and moderate/severe CP was determined using receiver operating characteristic analysis. Results: Pancreatic volume, T1 relaxation times, MRE-derived stiffness, and proton density fat fraction differed significantly between patients with mild CP, moderate/severe CP, and healthy controls (all p < 0.05). T1 mapping and MRE showed a very high diagnostic performance for distinguishing the mild CP group from the control group (T1 mapping: receiver operating characteristic area under the curve (ROC-AUC): 0.94; sensitivity: 84%; specificity: 91%, MRE: ROC-AUC: 0.93; sensitivity: 89%; specificity: 94%). T1 mapping and MRE also had the highest performance for diagnosing the presence of any CP from the control group (ROC-AUCs of 0.98 and 0.97, respectively). Conclusion: Quantitative assessments of T1 relaxation time and MRE-derived stiffness had high performance in detecting mild CP and could probably reflect the early fibrotic changes in CP.

TidsskriftAbdominal Radiology
Udgave nummer12
Sider (fra-til)5598-5608
Antal sider11
StatusUdgivet - dec. 2021

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© 2021, The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature.


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