Key Points

Question: Is magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) with targeted biopsy only non-inferior to systematic biopsy for the diagnosis of clinically significant prostate cancer (PCa)?

Findings: In this prospective phase 3 randomized clinical trial of 453 men, clinically significant cancer was found in 35% vs 30% in the MRI and systematic biopsy arms, respectively, which demonstrated noninferiority. A total of 79 participants in the MRI arm (37%) avoided a biopsy, and diagnosis of grade group 1 PCa was reduced by more than 50%.

Meaning: Magnetic resonance imaging with targeted biopsy alone resulted in similar detection rates of clinically significant PCa while avoiding biopsy in more than one-third of men and reducing the diagnosis of clinically insignificant cancer.


Importance: Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) with targeted biopsy is an appealing alternative to systematic 12-core transrectal ultrasonography (TRUS) biopsy for prostate cancer diagnosis but has yet to be widely adopted.

Objective: To determine whether MRI with only targeted biopsy was non-inferior to systematic TRUS biopsies in the detection of International Society of Urological Pathology grade group (GG) 2 or greater prostate cancer.

Design, Setting, and Participants: This multicenter, prospective randomized clinical trial was conducted in 5 Canadian academic health sciences centers between January 2017 and November 2019, and data were analyzed between January and March 2020. Participants included biopsy-naive men with a clinical suspicion of prostate cancer who were advised to undergo a prostate biopsy. Clinical suspicion was defined as a 5% or greater chance of GG2 or greater prostate cancer using the Prostate Cancer Prevention Trial Risk Calculator, version 2. Additional criteria were serum prostate-specific antigen levels of 20 ng/mL or less (to convert to micrograms per liter, multiply by 1) and no contraindication to MRI.

Interventions: Magnetic resonance imaging–targeted biopsy (MRI-TB) only if a lesion with a Prostate Imaging Reporting and Data System (PI-RADS), v 2.0, score of 3 or greater was identified vs 12-core systematic TRUS biopsy.

Main Outcome and Measures: The proportion of men with a diagnosis of GG2 or greater cancer. Secondary outcomes included the proportion who received a diagnosis of GG1 prostate cancer; GG3 or greater cancer; no significant cancer but subsequent positive MRI results and/or GG2 or greater cancer detected on a repeated biopsy by 2 years; and adverse events.

Results: The intention-to-treat population comprised 453 patients (367 [81.0%] White, 19 [4.2%] African Canadian, 32 [7.1%] Asian, and 10 [2.2%] Hispanic) who were randomized to undergo TRUS biopsy (226 [49.9%]) or MRI-TB (227 [51.1%]), of which 421 (93.0%) were evaluable per protocol. A lesion with a PI-RADS score of 3 or greater was detected in 138 of 221 men (62.4%) who underwent MRI, with 26 (12.1%), 82 (38.1%), and 30 (14.0%) having maximum PI-RADS scores of 3, 4, and 5, respectively. Eighty-three of 221 men who underwent MRI-TB (37%) had a negative MRI result and avoided biopsy. Cancers GG2 and greater were identified in 67 of 225 men (30%) who underwent TRUS biopsy vs 79 of 227 (35%) allocated to MRI-TB (absolute difference, 5%, 97.5% 1-sided CI, −3.4% to ∞; noninferiority margin, −5%). Adverse events were less common in the MRI-TB arm. Grade group 1 cancer detection was reduced by more than half in the MRI arm (from 22% to 10%; risk difference, −11.6%; 95% CI, −18.2% to −4.9%).

Conclusions and Relevance: Magnetic resonance imaging followed by selected targeted biopsy is non-inferior to initial systematic biopsy in men at risk for prostate cancer in detecting GG2 or greater cancers.

Laurence Klotz, CM, MD1; Joseph Chin, MD2; Peter C. Black, MD3; Antonio Finelli, MD4; Maurice Anidjar, MD5; Franck Bladou, MD1,6; Ashley Machado, MD3; Mark Levental, MD5; Sangeet Ghai, MD4; Sylvia Chang, MD2; Laurent Milot, MD7; Chirag Patel, MD1; Zahra Kassam, MD5; Carolyn Moore, MD8; Veeru Kasivisanathan, MD8; Andrew Loblaw, MD9; Marlene Kebabdjian, BSc1; Craig C. Earle, MD10; Greg R. Pond, PhD11; Masoom A. Haider, MD12

  1. Division of Urology, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  2. London Health Sciences Centre, University of Western Ontario, London, Ontario, Canada
  3. Vancouver Prostate Centre, Department of Urologic Sciences, The University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
  4. Princess Margaret Hospital, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  5. Jewish General Hospital, McGill University, Montreal, Québec, Canada
  6. Universite de Bordeaux, Bordeaux, France
  7. Body and VIR Radiology Department, Hospices Civils de Lyon, Hospital Edouard Herriot, Lyon, France
  8. University College London, London, England
  9. Institute of Healthcare Policy and Management, Department of Radiation Oncology, Ontario Institute of Cancer Research, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  10. Ontario Institute of Cancer Research, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  11. Department of Biostatistics, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
  12. Toronto General Hospital, Department of Radiology, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Source: Klotz L, Chin J, Black PC, et al. Comparison of Multiparametric Magnetic Resonance Imaging–Targeted Biopsy With Systematic Transrectal Ultrasonography Biopsy for Biopsy-Naive Men at Risk for Prostate Cancer: A Phase 3 Randomized Clinical Trial. JAMA Oncol. Published online February 04, 2021. doi:10.1001/jamaoncol.2020.7589