Receive a weekly summary and discussion of the top papers of the week by leading researchers in the field.

In Frontiers in oncology

Background : Given the similarities in clinical manifestations of cystic-solid pituitary adenomas (CS-PAs) and craniopharyngiomas (CPs), this study aims to establish and validate a nomogram based on preoperative imaging features and blood indices to differentiate between CS-PAs and CPs.

Methods : A departmental database was searched to identify patients who had undergone tumor resection between January 2012 and December 2020, and those diagnosed with CS-PAs or CPs by histopathology were included. Preoperative magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) features as well as blood indices were retrieved and analyzed. Radiological features were extracted from the tumor on contrast-enhanced T1 (CE-T1) weighted and T2 weighted sequences. The two independent samples t-test and principal component analysis (PCA) were used for feature selection, data dimension reduction, and radiomics signature building. Next, the radiomics signature was put in five classification models for exploring the best classifier with superior identification performance. Multivariate logistic regression analysis was then used to establish a radiomic-clinical model containing radiomics and hematological features, and the model was presented as a nomogram. The performance of the radiomics-clinical model was assessed by calibration curve, clinical effectiveness as well as internal validation.

Results : A total of 272 patients were included in this study: 201 with CS-PAs and 71 with CPs. These patients were randomized into training set (n=182) and test set (n=90). The radiomics signature, which consisted of 18 features after dimensionality reduction, showed superior discrimination performance in 5 different classification models. The area under the curve (AUC) values of the training set and the test set obtained by the radiomics signature are 0.92 and 0.88 in the logistic regression model, 0.90 and 0.85 in the Ridge classifier, 0.88 and 0.82 in the stochastic gradient descent (SGD) classifier, 0.78 and 0.85 in the linear support vector classification (Linear SVC), 0.93 and 0.86 in the multilayers perceptron (MLP) classifier, respectively. The predictive factors of the nomogram included radiomic signature, age, WBC count, and FIB. The nomogram showed good discrimination performance (with an AUC of 0.93 in the training set and 0.90 in the test set) and good calibration. Moreover, decision curve analysis (DCA) demonstrated satisfactory clinical effectiveness of the proposed radiomic-clinical nomogram.

Conclusions : A personalized nomogram containing radiomics signature and blood indices was proposed in this study. This nomogram is simple yet effective in differentiating between CS-PAs and CPs and thus can be used in routine clinical practice.

Zhao Zhen, Xiao Dongdong, Nie Chuansheng, Zhang Hao, Jiang Xiaobing, Jecha Ali Rajab, Yan Pengfei, Zhao Hongyang


craniopharyngioma, machine learning, nomogram , pituitary adenoma, predictive model, radiomics