Weight-bearing MRI of the Lumbar Spine: Spinal Stenosis and Spondylolisthesis.

Symptoms of degenerative lumbar spinal stenosis include back pain, radiculopathy, claudication, and muscular fatigue that tend to be predominant in the standing position or during walking. Lumbar spondylolisthesis is also a well-known cause of spinal stenosis, lateral recess, and neural foraminal narrowing that tends to become more severe in the upright position. This indicates a functional positional component of both spinal stenosis and spondylolisthesis. Lumbar spinal stenosis and spondylolisthesis are typically evaluated by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) performed in the supine position with a pillow under the patient’s lower limbs that slightly flexes the lumbar spine and ameliorates symptoms. Because these two entities tend to be aggravated in the upright position, it seems rational to also consider performing diagnostic imaging in these patients in the upright position. This article reviews the use of weight-bearing MRI for lumbar spinal stenosis and spondylolisthesis.

Early development of tendinopathy in humans: Sequence of pathological changes in structure and tissue turnover signalling.

Overloading of tendon tissue with resulting chronic pain (tendinopathy) is a common disorder in occupational-, leisure- and sports-activity, but its pathogenesis remains poorly understood. To investigate the very early phase of tendinopathy, Achilles and patellar tendons were investigated in 200 physically active patients and 50 healthy control persons. Patients were divided into three groups: symptoms for 0-1 months (T1), 1-2 months (T2) or 2-3 months (T3). Tendinopathic Achilles tendon cross-sectional area determined by ultrasonography (US) was ~25% larger than in healthy control persons. Both Achilles and patellar anterior-posterior diameter were elevated in tendinopathy, and only later in Achilles was the width increased. Increased tendon size was accompanied by an increase in hypervascularization (US Doppler flow) without any change in mRNA for angiogenic factors. From patellar biopsies taken bilaterally, mRNA for most growth factors and tendon components remained unchanged (except for TGF-beta1 and substance-P) in early tendinopathy. Tendon stiffness remained unaltered over the first three months of tendinopathy and was similar to the asymptomatic contra-lateral tendon. In conclusion, this suggests that tendinopathy pathogenesis represents a disturbed tissue homeostasis with fluid accumulation. The disturbance is likely induced by repeated mechanical overloading rather than a partial rupture of the tendon.

Dual-Energy CT for Suspected Radiographically Negative Wrist Fractures: A Prospective Diagnostic Test Accuracy Study.

In this prospective study, dual-energy CT and MRI had a similarly high sensitivity and specificity in helping detect radiographically negative wrist fractures. Dual-energy CT had a high sensitivity and a moderate specificity in the detection of bone marrow edema of the wrist. Dual-energy CT had high sensitivity and specificity in depicting fractures of the wrist in patients with suspected wrist fractures and negative findings on radiographs.

Sports Imaging of Team Handball Injuries.

Team handball is a fast high-scoring indoor contact sport with > 20 million registered players who are organized in > 150 federations worldwide. The combination of complex and unique biomechanics of handball throwing, permitted body tackles and blocks, and illegal fouls contribute to team handball ranging among the four athletic sports that carry the highest risks of injury. The categories include a broad range of acute and overuse injuries that most commonly occur in the shoulder, knee, and ankle. In concert with sports medicine, physicians, surgeons, physical therapists, and radiologists consult in the care of handball players through the appropriate use and expert interpretations of radiography, ultrasonography, CT, and MRI studies to facilitate diagnosis, characterization, and healing of a broad spectrum of acute, complex, concomitant, chronic, and overuse injuries. This article is based on published data and the author team’s cumulative experience in playing and caring for handball players in Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Germany, Switzerland, and Spain. The article reviews and illustrates the spectrum of common handball injuries and highlights the contributions of sports imaging for diagnosis and management.

Partnership to Advance the Development of Berubicin in Primary and Metastatic Cancers of the Central Nervous System

IAG and CNS Pharmaceuticals Partner to Further the Development of Berubicin

IAG, a leading medical imaging company, will work closely with CNS during the Berubicin clinical trials to provide critical imaging services, its proprietary platform DYNAMIKA and imaging data analysis. IAG has deep expertise in partnering with biotech, and specifically oncology companies, to provide a centralized reading and analysis of patient responses in real time. IAG’s scientific and clinical imaging expertise in the field of glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) will be coupled with IAG’s proprietary AI and quantitative image-based assessments to allow CNS to review efficacy assessments, objective responses, and to thoroughly explore the advanced treatment manifestations. GBM therapies often lead to pseudo-progression, a local tissue reaction resulting from immune cell infiltration, inflammation, tumor necrosis and oedema which are often misinterpreted as tumor growth on traditional MRIs. Pseudo-progression is difficult to distinguish from disease progression using routine clinical MRI assessments.  IAG and CNS will be utilizing IAG’s advanced Artificial Intelligence (AI)-driven methodologies that provide reliable early efficacy readouts.

Adding IAG was a key step in preparation for the recently developed clinical trials in Berubicin,” commented John Climaco, CEO of CNS Pharmaceuticals. “IAG has an exemplary track record of partnering closely with companies in the biotech space to provide critical analysis of both efficacy and patient response, which we believe will be pivotal in advancing our Berubicin clinical trials. Furthermore, this was yet another key milestone achieved in our trial preparations as we continue to take all of the necessary steps to ensure a successful and timely launch of our Phase II trials. We look forward to leveraging IAG’s extensive expertise, as we plan to initiate our Phase II clinical trial of Berubicin in adults early next year.”

“We are excited to partner with CNS and bring our expertise to support the optimal trial design, efficient imaging data management and review. Use of the state-of-the-art and IAG’s AI driven methodologies for imaging data review will allow us to comprehensively explore Berubicin’s efficacy and build significant scientific evidence, while reducing the development costs, timelines and uncertainties,”  commented Dr. Olga Kubassova, IAG’s CEO and scientific founder.

Advanced imaging methods and computer aided image analysis is the key to successfully interpret treatment related changes in GBM and identify responders early,” stated Dr. Diana Dupont-RoettgerChief Scientific Alliance Officer at IAG. “We are excited to partner with CNS Pharmaceuticals in the development of Berubicin.

About CNS Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
CNS Pharmaceuticals is developing novel treatments for primary and metastatic cancers of the brain and central nervous system. Its lead drug candidate, Berubicin, is proposed for the treatment of glioblastoma multiforme (GBM), an aggressive and incurable form of brain cancer. CNS holds a worldwide exclusive license to the Berubicin chemical compound and has acquired all data and know-how from Reata Pharmaceuticals, Inc. related to a completed Phase 1 clinical trial with Berubicin in malignant brain tumors, which Reata conducted in 2006.  In this trial, 44% of patients experienced a statistically significant improvement in clinical benefit. This 44% disease control rate was based on 11 patients (out of 25 evaluable patients) with stable disease, plus responders. One patient experienced a durable complete response and remains cancer-free as of February 20, 2020. These Phase 1 results represent a limited patient sample size and, while promising, are not a guarantee that similar results will be achieved in subsequent trials. By the end of 2020, CNS expects to commence a Phase 2 clinical trial of Berubicin for the treatment of GBM in the U.S., while a sub-licensee partner undertakes a Phase 2 trial in adults and a first-ever Phase 1 trial in pediatric GBM patients in Poland.  Its second drug candidate, WP1244, is a novel DNA binding agent that has shown in preclinical studies that it is 500 times more potent than the chemotherapeutic agent daunorubicin in inhibiting tumor cell proliferation. https://cnspharma.com/

About IAG

Image Analysis Group (IAG) is a unique clinical development partner to life sciences companies.  IAG broadly leverages its proprietary image analysis methodologies, power of our cloud platform DYNAMIKA, years of experience in AI and Machine Learning as well as bespoke co-development business models to ensure higher probability for promising therapeutics to reach the patients. Our independent Bio-Partnering division fuses risk-sharing business models and agile culture to accelerate novel drug development.

For more information please reach out to <imaging.experts@ia-grp.com>