The T2-FLAIR-mismatch sign as an imaging biomarker for IDH and 1p/19q status in diffuse low-grade gliomas: A systematic review with a Bayesian approach to evaluation of diagnostic test performance

Anshit Goyal, Yagiz U. Yolcu, Aakshit Goyal, Panagiotis Kerezoudis, Desmond A. Brown, Christopher S. Graffeo, Sandy Goncalves, Terence C. Burns, Ian F. Parney

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE With the revised WHO 2016 classification of brain tumors, there has been increasing interest in imaging biomarkers to predict molecular status and improve the yield of genetic testing for diffuse low-grade gliomas (LGGs). The T2-FLAIR-mismatch sign has been suggested to be a highly specific radiographic marker of isocitrate dehydrogenase (IDH) gene mutation and 1p/19q codeletion status in diffuse LGGs. The presence of T2-FLAIR mismatch indicates a T2-hyperintense lesion that is hypointense on FLAIR with the exception of a hyperintense rim. METHODS In accordance with PRISMA guidelines, we performed a systematic review of the Ovid Medline, Embase, Scopus, and Cochrane databases for reports of studies evaluating the diagnostic performance of T2-FLAIR mismatch in predicting the IDH and 1p/19q codeletion status in diffuse LGGs. Results were combined into a 2 x 2 format, and the following diagnostic performance parameters were calculated: sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, negative predictive value, and positive (LR+) and negative (LR-) likelihood ratios. In addition, we utilized Bayes theorem to calculate posttest probabilities as a function of known pretest probabilities from previous genome-wide association studies and the calculated LRs. Calculations were performed for 1) IDH mutation with 1p/19q codeletion (IDHmut-Codel), 2) IDH mutation without 1p/19q codeletion (IDHmut-Noncodel), 3) IDH mutation overall, and 4) 1p/19q codeletion overall. The QUADAS-2 (revised Quality Assessment of Diagnostic Accuracy Studies) tool was utilized for critical appraisal of included studies. RESULTS A total of 4 studies were included, with inclusion of 2 separate cohorts from a study reporting testing and validation (n = 746). From pooled analysis of all cohorts, the following values were obtained for each molecular profile-IDHmut-Codel: sensitivity 30%, specificity 73%, LR+ 1.1, LR-1.0; IDHmut-Noncodel: sensitivity 33.7%, specificity 98.5%, LR+ 22.5, LR-0.7; IDH: sensitivity 32%, specificity 100%, LR+ 32.1, LR-0.7; 1p/19q codeletion: sensitivity 0%, specificity 54%, LR+ 0.01, LR-1.9. Bayes theorem was used to calculate the following posttest probabilities after a positive and negative result, respectively-IDHmut-Codel: 32.2% and 29.4%; IDHmut-Noncodel: 95% and 40%; IDH: 99.2% and 73.5%; 1p/19q codeletion: 0.4% and 35.1%. CONCLUSIONS The T2-FLAIR-mismatch sign is an insensitive but highly specific marker of IDH mutation but not 1p/19q codeletion in diffuse LGGs, although there may be significant exceptions. These findings support the utility of T2-FLAIR mismatch as an imaging-based biomarker for positive selection of patients with IDH-mutant gliomas.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number9660
Pages (from-to)1-7
Number of pages7
JournalNeurosurgical focus
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1 2019


  • Brain neoplasm
  • Brain tumor
  • Oligodendroglioma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology


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