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Journal Article

Rapid whole-brain quantitative MT imaging


Heule,  R       
Department High-Field Magnetic Resonance, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

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Afshari, R., Santini, F., Heule, R., Meyer, C., Pfeuffer, J., & Bieri, O. (2023). Rapid whole-brain quantitative MT imaging. Zeitschrift für Medizinische Physik, Epub ahead. doi:10.1016/j.zemedi.2023.02.005.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-000C-EC67-7
Purpose: To provide a robust whole-brain quantitative magnetization transfer (MT) imaging method that is not limited by long acquisition times.
Methods: Two variants of a spiral 2D interleaved multi-slice spoiled gradient echo (SPGR) sequence are used for rapid quantitative MT imaging of the brain at 3 T. A dual flip angle, steady-state prepared, double-contrast method is used for combined B1 and-T1 mapping in combination with a single-contrast MT-prepared acquisition over a range of different saturation flip angles (50 deg to 850 deg) and offset frequencies (1 kHz and 10 kHz). Five sets (containing minimum 6 to maximum 18 scans) with different MT-weightings were acquired. In addition, main magnetic field inhomogeneities (ΔB0) were measured from two Cartesian low-resolution 2D SPGR scans with different echo times. Quantitative MT model parameters were derived from all sets using a two-pool continuous-wave model analysis, yielding the pool-size ratio, F, their exchange rate, kf, and their transverse relaxation time, T2r.
Results: Whole-brain quantitative MT imaging was feasible for all sets with total acquisition times ranging from 7:15 min down to 3:15 min. For accurate modeling, B1-correction was essential for all investigated sets, whereas ΔB0-correction showed limited bias for the observed maximum off-resonances at 3 T.
Conclusion: The combination of rapid B1-T1 mapping and MT-weighted imaging using a 2D multi-slice spiral SPGR research sequence offers excellent prospects for rapid whole-brain quantitative MT imaging in the clinical setting.