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Rapid diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance imaging of the brain without susceptibility artifacts: Single-shot STEAM with radial undersampling and iterative reconstruction.

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Merrem,  A.
Biomedical NMR Research GmbH, MPI for Biophysical Chemistry, Max Planck Society;

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Hofer,  S.
Biomedical NMR Research GmbH, MPI for Biophysical Chemistry, Max Planck Society;

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Voit,  D.
Biomedical NMR Research GmbH, MPI for Biophysical Chemistry, Max Planck Society;

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Merboldt,  K. D.
Biomedical NMR Research GmbH, MPI for Biophysical Chemistry, Max Planck Society;

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Klosowski,  J.
Biomedical NMR Research GmbH, MPI for Biophysical Chemistry, Max Planck Society;

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Untenberger,  M.
Biomedical NMR Research GmbH, MPI for Biophysical Chemistry, Max Planck Society;

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Frahm,  J.
Biomedical NMR Research GmbH, MPI for Biophysical Chemistry, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Merrem, A., Hofer, S., Voit, D., Merboldt, K. D., Klosowski, J., Untenberger, M., et al. (2017). Rapid diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance imaging of the brain without susceptibility artifacts: Single-shot STEAM with radial undersampling and iterative reconstruction. Investigative Radiology, 52(7), 428-433. doi:10.1097/RLI.0000000000000357.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-002D-38B2-7
Abstract
OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to develop a rapid diffusion-weighted (DW) magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) technique for whole-brain studies without susceptibility artifacts and measuring times below 3 minutes. MATERIALS AND METHODS: The proposed method combines a DW spin-echo module with a single-shot stimulated echo acquisition mode MRI sequence. Previous deficiencies in image quality due to limited signal-to-noise ratio are compensated for (1) by radial undersampling to enhance the flip angle and thus the signal strength of stimulated echoes; (2) by defining the image reconstruction as a nonlinear inverse problem, which is solved by the iteratively regularized Gauss-Newton method; and (3) by denoising with use of a modified nonlocal means filter. The method was implemented on a 3 T MRI system (64-channel head coil, 80 mT · m gradients) and evaluated for 10 healthy subjects and 2 patients with an ischemic lesion and epidermoid cyst, respectively. RESULTS: High-quality mean DW images of the entire brain were obtained by acquiring 1 non-DW image and 6 DW images with different diffusion directions at b = 1000 s · mm. The achievable resolution for a total measuring time of 84 seconds was 1.5 mm in plane with a section thickness of 4 mm (55 sections). A measuring time of 168 seconds allowed for an in-plane resolution of 1.25 mm and a section thickness of 3 mm (54 sections). Apparent diffusion coefficient values were in agreement with literature data. CONCLUSIONS: The proposed method for DW MRI offers immunity against susceptibility problems, high spatial resolution, adequate signal-to-noise ratio and clinically feasible scan times of less than 3 minutes for whole-brain studies. More extended clinical trials require accelerated computation and online reconstruction.