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Methodological Framework For Radiomics Applications In Hodgkin’s Lymphoma

M. Sollini, M. Kirienko, Lara Cavinato, F. Ricci, Matteo Biroli, Francesca Ieva, L. Calderoni, E. Tabacchi, C. Nanni, P. Zinzani, S. Fanti, A. Guidetti, A. Alessi, P. Corradini, E. Seregni, Carmelo Carlo-Stella, A. Chiti
Published 2020 · Medicine

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Background According to published data, radiomics features differ between lesions of refractory/relapsing HL patients from those of long-term responders. However, several methodological aspects have not been elucidated yet. Purpose The study aimed at setting up a methodological framework in radiomics applications in Hodgkin’s lymphoma (HL), especially at (a) developing a novel feature selection approach, (b) evaluating radiomic intra-patient lesions’ similarity, and (c) classifying relapsing refractory (R/R) vs non-(R/R) patients. Methods We retrospectively included 85 patients (male:female = 52:33; median age 35 years, range 19–74). LIFEx ( www.lifexsoft.org ) was used for [ 18 F]FDG-PET/CT segmentation and feature extraction. Features were a-priori selected if they were highly correlated or uncorrelated to the volume. Principal component analysis-transformed features were used to build the fingerprints that were tested to assess lesions’ similarity, using the silhouette . For intra-patient similarity analysis, we used patients having multiple lesions only. To classify patients as non-R/R and R/R, the fingerprint considering one single lesion (fingerprint_One) and all lesions (fingerprint_All) was tested using Random Undersampling Boosting of Tree Ensemble (RUBTE). Results HL fingerprints included up to 15 features. Intra-patient lesion similarity analysis resulted in mean/median silhouette values below 0.5 (low similarity especially in the non-R/R group). In the test set, the fingerprint_One classification accuracy was 62% (78% sensitivity and 53% specificity); the classification by RUBTE using fingerprint_All resulted in 82% accuracy (70% sensitivity and 88% specificity). Conclusions Lesion similarity analysis was developed, and it allowed to demonstrate that HL lesions were not homogeneous within patients in terms of radiomics signature. Therefore, a random target lesion selection should not be adopted for radiomics applications. Moreover, the classifier to predict R/R vs non-R/R performed the best when all the lesions were used.
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