DCE@urLAB: A dynamic contrast-enhanced MRI pharmacokinetic analysis tool for preclinical data

Juan E. Ortuño, María J. Ledesma-Carbayo, Rui V. Simões, Ana P. Candiota, Carles Arús, Andrés Santos

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26 Citations (Scopus)


Background: DCE@urLAB is a software application for analysis of dynamic contrast-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging data (DCE-MRI). The tool incorporates a friendly graphical user interface (GUI) to interactively select and analyze a region of interest (ROI) within the image set, taking into account the tissue concentration of the contrast agent (CA) and its effect on pixel intensity.Results: Pixel-wise model-based quantitative parameters are estimated by fitting DCE-MRI data to several pharmacokinetic models using the Levenberg-Marquardt algorithm (LMA). DCE@urLAB also includes the semi-quantitative parametric and heuristic analysis approaches commonly used in practice. This software application has been programmed in the Interactive Data Language (IDL) and tested both with publicly available simulated data and preclinical studies from tumor-bearing mouse brains.Conclusions: A user-friendly solution for applying pharmacokinetic and non-quantitative analysis DCE-MRI in preclinical studies has been implemented and tested. The proposed tool has been specially designed for easy selection of multi-pixel ROIs. A public release of DCE@urLAB, together with the open source code and sample datasets, is available at http://www.die.upm.es/im/archives/DCEurLAB/. © 2013 Ortuño et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.
Original languageEnglish
Article number316
JournalBMC Bioinformatics
Publication statusPublished - 4 Nov 2013


  • Animal models
  • Fitting
  • High field MR
  • IDL
  • Imaging
  • Levenberg-Marquardt
  • Pharmacokinetics
  • Preclinical


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