Journal of Medical Physics
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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 46  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 181-188

Framework for machine learning of ct and pet radiomics to predict local failure after radiotherapy in locally advanced head and neck cancers

1 Department of Nuclear Medicine, Christian Medical College, Vellore, Tamil Nadu, India
2 Department of Radiation Oncology, Christian Medical College, Vellore, Tamil Nadu; Department of Radiation Oncology, Baptist Cancer Centre, Bangalore Baptist Hospital, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India
3 Department of Radiation Oncology, Christian Medical College, Vellore, Tamil Nadu, India
4 Department of Radiation Oncology, School of Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195, USA
5 Department of Clinical Epidemiology, Christian Medical College, Vellore, Tamil Nadu, India
6 Department of Radiology, Christian Medical College, Vellore, Tamil Nadu, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Hannah Mary T. Thomas
Department of Radiation Oncology, Christian Medical College, Vellore, Tamil Nadu
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jmp.JMP_6_21

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Context: Cancer Radiomics is an emerging field in medical imaging and refers to the process of converting routine radiological images that are typically qualitatively interpreted to quantifiable descriptions of the tumor phenotypes and when combined with statistical analytics can improve the accuracy of clinical outcome prediction models. However, to understand the radiomic features and their correlation to molecular changes in the tumor, first, there is a need for the development of robust image analysis methods, software tools and statistical prediction models which is often limited in low- and middle-income countries (LMIC). Aims: The aim is to build a framework for machine learning of radiomic features of planning computed tomography (CT) and positron emission tomography (PET) using open source radiomics and data analytics platforms to make it widely accessible to clinical groups. The framework is tested in a small cohort to predict local disease failure following radiation treatment for head-and-neck cancer (HNC). The predictors were also compared with the existing Aerts HNC radiomics signature. Settings and Design: Retrospective analysis of patients with locally advanced HNC between 2017 and 2018 and 31 patients with both pre- and post-radiation CT and evaluation PET were selected. Subjects and Methods: Tumor volumes were delineated on baseline PET using the semi-automatic adaptive-threshold algorithm and propagated to CT; PyRadiomics features (total of 110 under shape/intensity/texture classes) were extracted. Two feature-selection methods were tested for model stability. Models were built based on least absolute shrinkage and selection operator-logistic and Ridge regression of the top pretreatment radiomic features and compared to Aerts' HNC-signature. Average model performance across all internal validation test folds was summarized by the area under the receiver operator curve (ROC). Results: Both feature selection methods selected CT features MCC (GLCM), SumEntropy (GLCM) and Sphericity (Shape) that could predict the binary failure status in the cross-validated group and achieved an AUC >0.7. However, models using Aerts' signature features (Energy, Compactness, GLRLM-GrayLevelNonUniformity and GrayLevelNonUniformity-HLH wavelet) could not achieve a clear separation between outcomes (AUC = 0.51–0.54). Conclusions: Radiomics pipeline included open-source workflows which makes it adoptable in LMIC countries. Additional independent validation of data is crucial for the implementation of radiomic models for clinical risk stratification.

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