Carballido-Gamio, J; Joseph, GB; Lynch, JA; Link, TM; Majumdar, S
Longitudinal analysis of MRI T2 knee cartilage laminar organization in a subset of patients from the osteoarthritis initiative: a texture approach.
Cartilage magnetic resonance imaging T(2) relaxation time is sensitive to hydration, collagen content, and tissue anisotropy, and a potential imaging-based biomarker for knee osteoarthritis. This longitudinal pilot study presents an improved cartilage flattening technique that facilitates texture analysis using gray-level co-occurrence matrices parallel and perpendicular to the cartilage layers, and the application of this technique to the knee cartilage of 13 subjects of the osteoarthritis initiative at baseline, 1-year follow-up, and 2-year follow-up. Cartilage flattening showed minimum distortion (~ 0.5 ms) of mean T(2) values between nonflattened and flattened T(2) maps. Gray-level co-occurrence matrices texture analysis of flattened T(2) maps detected a cartilage laminar organization at baseline, 1-year follow-up, and 2-year follow-up by yielding significant (P< 0.05) differences between texture parameters perpendicular and parallel to the cartilage layers. Tendencies showed higher contrast, dissimilarity, angular second moment, and energy perpendicular to the cartilage layers; and higher homogeneity, entropy, variance, and correlation parallel to them. Significant (P< 0.05) longitudinal texture changes were also detected reflecting subtle signs of a laminar disruption. Tendencies showed decreasing contrast, dissimilarity, and entropy; and increasing homogeneity, energy, and correlation. Results of this study warrant further investigation to complete the assessment of the usefulness of the presented methodology in the study of knee osteoarthritis.