Development of Quantitative Magnetic Resonance Imaging Methods for Radiotherapy Response Studies

Sofie Rahbek

Research focus 
The project aims to increase the utility and efficacy af MRI-guided radiotherapy af brain metastasis by implementing improvements af qMRI, particularly diffusion-weighted MRI (DW-qMRI), to provide biomarkers for the radiotherapy tumor response. With DW-qMRI's sensitivity to motion of water, the method can offer real-time insight into the state of cells and is thus already a strong candidate for becoming an imaging biomarker of treatment response at a voxel-based level. However, several challenges remain, and a dedicated work with both the MRI acquisition and the post-processing is necessary.

The tasks are to develop a voxel-based differentiation af sub-regions af brain metastasis, to improve clinically feasible DW-qMRI measurements, and to develop dedicated radiotherapy MRI sequences enabling time-efficient measurements suitable for longitudinal radiotherapy-studies.


With emerging MRI-linear accelerator hybrid systems (MRLs), of which one was recently installed at Odense University Hospital, the role af MRI in radiotherapy will change, as it enables a potential treatment adaption on a day-to-dav basis guided by the biological information provided by MRI.


The overall aim of the project is to improve radiotherapy of patients suffering from secondary tumors in the
brain by developing and improving MRI methods to reveal and deliver biological information of relevance.
With an incidence of 9-17 % of all cancer cases and an increasing rate, this is the most common intracranial
malignancy in adults, and the efficacy of current standards of therapy needs to be improved.

The project is expected to produce valuable prognosis and monitoring methods for patients with
brain metastases, which may benefit patients at any hospital with access to MRI. In a broader perspective,
results of this study may have impact for MRI guided radiotherapy in general, especially considering the
emerging MRL systems which are about to define the beginning of a new era in radiotherapy.

Scientific output 
Find Sofie's publications at DTU's online research database ORBIT

The project is funded by Danish Cancer Society and carried out in collaboration with Odense University Hospital. 

Assoc Prof Lars G. Hanson, Assoc Prof Faisal Mahmood. 

Project period 
August 2018 - August 2021





Sofie Rahbek
PhD student
DTU Health Tech
27 NOVEMBER 2020