European Radiology

, Volume 23, Issue 12, pp 3221–3227 | Cite as

BOLD-MRI of breast invasive ductal carcinoma: correlation of R2* value and the expression of HIF-1α

  • Min LiuEmail author
  • Xiaojuan Guo
  • Shuangkun Wang
  • Mulan Jin
  • Ying Wang
  • Jie Li
  • Jun Liu



To explore the reliability and feasibility of blood oxygenation level-dependent-based functional magnetic resonance imaging (BOLD-fMRI) to depict hypoxia in breast invasive ductal carcinoma.


A total of 103 women with 104 invasive ductal carcinomas (IDCs) underwent breast BOLD-fMRI at 3.0 T. Histological specimens were analysed for tumour size, grade, axillary lymph nodes and expression of oestrogen receptors, progesterone receptors, human epidermal growth factor receptor 2, p53, Ki-67 and hypoxia inducible factor 1α (HIF-1α). The distribution and reliability of R2* were analysed. Correlations of the R2* value with the prognostic factors and HIF-1α were respectively analysed.


The R2* map of IDC demonstrated a relatively heterogeneous signal. The mean R2* value was (53.4 ± 18.2) Hz. The Shapiro–Wilk test (W = 0.971, P = 0.020) suggested that the sample did not follow a normal distribution. The inter-rater and intrarater correlation coefficient was 0.967 and 0.959, respectively. The R2* values of IDCs were significantly lower in patients without axillary lymph nodes metastasis. The R2* value had a weak correlation with Ki67 expression (r = 0.208, P = 0.038). The mean R2* value correlated moderately with the level of HIF-1α (r = 0.516, P = 0.000).


BOLD-fMRI is a simple and non-invasive technique that yields hypoxia information on breast invasive ductal carcinomas.

Key Points

• Blood oxygenation level-dependent-based MRI can be used to assess tumour hypoxia.

• BOLD-fMRI shows characteristic features of breast invasive ductal carcinoma.

• R2* values of BOLD-fMRI correlate with hypoxia inducible factor 1α.


Breast invasive ductal carcinoma Hypoxia Blood oxygen level-dependent effect Magnetic resonance imaging Hypoxia inducible factor 1α 



This research was supported by the Chinese National Scientific Research Foundation (30900364)


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Copyright information

© European Society of Radiology 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Min Liu
    • 1
    Email author
  • Xiaojuan Guo
    • 1
  • Shuangkun Wang
    • 1
  • Mulan Jin
    • 2
  • Ying Wang
    • 2
  • Jie Li
    • 3
  • Jun Liu
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Radiology, Beijing Chao Yang HospitalCapital Medical UniversityBeijingChina
  2. 2.Department of Pathology, Beijing Chaoyang HospitalCapital Medical University BeijingBeijingPeople’s Republic of China
  3. 3.Department of Breast Surgery, Beijing Chaoyang HospitalCapital Medical University BeijingBeijingPeople’s Republic of China

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