Five immunocompetent C57BL/6-cBrd/cBrd/Cr (albino C57BL/6) mice were injected with GL261-luc2 cells, a cell line sharing characteristics of human glioblastoma multiforme (GBM). The mice were imaged using magnetic resonance (MR) at five separate time points to characterize growth and development of the tumor. After 25 days, the final tumor volumes of the mice varied from 12 mm3 to 62 mm3, even though mice were inoculated from the same tumor cell line under carefully controlled conditions. We generated hypotheses to explore large variances in final tumor size and tested them with our simple reaction-diffusion model in both a 3-dimensional (3D) finite difference method and a 2-dimensional (2D) level set method. The parameters obtained from a best-fit procedure, designed to yield simulated tumors as close as possible to the observed ones, vary by an order of magnitude between the three mice analyzed in detail. These differences may reflect morphological and biological variability in tumor growth, as well as errors in the mathematical model, perhaps from an oversimplification of the tumor dynamics or nonidentifiability of parameters. Our results generate parameters that match other experimental in vitro and in vivo measurements. Additionally, we calculate wave speed, which matches with other rat and human measurements.
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