Advanced magnetic resonance imaging in glioblastoma: a review
Glioblastoma, the most common and most rapidly progressing primary malignant tumor of the central nervous system, continues to portend a dismal prognosis, despite improvements in diagnostic and therapeutic strategies over the last 20 years. The standard of care radiographic characterization of glioblastoma is magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), which is a widely utilized examination in the diagnosis and post-treatment management of patients with glioblastoma. Basic MRI modalities available from any clinical scanner, including native T1-weighted (T1w) and contrast-enhanced (T1CE), T2-weighted (T2w), and T2-fluid-attenuated inversion recovery (T2-FLAIR) sequences, provide critical clinical information about various processes in the tumor environment. In the last decade, advanced MRI modalities are increasingly utilized to further characterize glioblastomas more comprehensively. These include multiparametric MRI sequences, such as dynamic susceptibility contrast (DSC), dynamic contrast enhancement (DCE), higher order diffusion techniques such as diffusion tensor imaging (DTI), and MR spectroscopy (MRS). Significant efforts are ongoing to implement these advanced imaging modalities into improved clinical workflows and personalized therapy approaches. Functional MRI (fMRI) and tractography are increasingly being used to identify eloquent cortices and important tracts to minimize postsurgical neurodeficits. A contemporary review of the application of standard and advanced MRI in clinical neuro-oncologic practice is presented here.