9 November 2021
The BIR Godfrey Hounsfield Memorial Lecture was delivered by Professor Vicky Goh at the BIR Annual Congress on 4 November 2021 and the award was presented after her talk on “PET–MRI: Integrating the best of both modalities for cancer care”. Professor Goh is Head of Department, Cancer Imaging at the School of Biomedical Engineering and Imaging Sciences, King’s College London and Honorary Consultant Radiologist at Guy’s and St Thomas’ Hospitals, London.
The lecture recognised the 50th anniversary of CT (developed in 1971) and the contributions Sir Godfrey Hounsfield made to the world of imaging and cancer care.
With the aim of improving cancer care, “personalised” treatment is essential; giving the optimum treatment according to someone’s individual and molecular characteristics at the right time. Professor Goh gave an excellent overview of the role of imaging, from X-rays to PET–MRI.
Benefits of PET–MRI include optimum use for the paediatric population where lower radiation dose is preferred, for localisation of the diagnosis where integrating PET and MRI is synergistic with increased specificity and/or improved quantitation, and where simultaneous assessment of different biological and physiological process is relevant.
Published findings show higher accuracies for PET–MRI vs PET–CT: 97.3% vs 83.9% and additional malignant findings in 5% of cases. There are higher cost considerations for PET–MRI, though there is an argument that this could be off-set by its benefits. The need for additional imaging may be obviated, management decisions made faster and lower treatment costs from better patient selection.
In line with the theme of this year’s Annual Congress, “Working together for excellence”, the hybrid modality of PET–MRI brings together several disciplines and has demonstrated its viability as a clinical tool with reduced radiation exposure, offers new insights into the biology of disease and remains a rich source for ongoing research for future applications. With increasing personalisation of care, PET–MRI offers the opportunity to transform care delivery for patients—the right treatment at the right time and ultimately a better patient experience.
 Mayerhoefer et al. Eur J Nucl Med Mol Imaging 2020; 45:340-7; Martin et al. J Nucl Med 2020; 61(8):1131-6.