Background: Quantitative evaluation of amyloid positron emission tomography (PET) with standardized uptake value ratio (SUVR) plays a key role in clinical studies of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). We have proposed a PET-only (MR-free) amyloid quantification method, although some commercial software packages are required. The aim of this study was to develop an automated quantification tool for amyloid PET without using commercial software. Methods: The quantification tool was created by combining four components: (1) anatomical standardization to positive and negative templates using NEUROSTAT stereo.exe; (2) similarity calculation between standardized images and respective templates based on normalized cross-correlation (selection of the image for SUVR measurement); (3) voxel value normalization by the mean value of reference regions (making an SUVR-scaled image); and (4) SUVR calculation based on pre-defined regions of interest (ROIs). We examined 166 subjects who underwent a [11C] Pittsburgh compound-B PET scan through the Japanese Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (J-ADNI) study. SUVRs in five ROIs (frontal lobe, temporal lobe, parietal lobe, occipital lobe, and posterior cingulate cortex and precuneus) were calculated with the cerebellar cortex as the reference region. The SUVRs obtained by our tool were compared with manual step-by-step processing and the conventional PMOD-based method (PMOD Technologies, Switzerland). Results: Compared with manual step-by-step processing, our developed automated quantification tool reduced processing time by 85%. The SUVRs obtained by the developed quantification tool were consistent with those obtained by manual processing. Compared with the conventional PMOD-based method, the developed quantification tool provided 1.5% lower SUVR values, on average. We determined that this bias is likely due to the difference in anatomical standardization methods. Conclusions: We developed an automated quantification tool for amyloid PET images. Using this tool, SUVR values can be quickly measured without individual MRI and without commercial software. This quantification tool may be useful for clinical studies of AD.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Biomedical Engineering
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging