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Proceedings Paper

Optimized magnetic resonance diffusion protocol for ex-vivo whole human brain imaging with a clinical scanner
Author(s): Benoit Scherrer; Onur Afacan; Aymeric Stamm; Jolene Singh; Simon K. Warfield
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Paper Abstract

Diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance imaging (DW-MRI) provides a novel insight into the brain to facilitate our understanding of the brain connectivity and microstructure. While in-vivo DW-MRI enables imaging of living patients and longitudinal studies of brain changes, post-mortem ex-vivo DW-MRI has numerous advantages. Ex-vivo imaging benefits from greater resolution and sensitivity due to the lack of imaging time constraints; the use of tighter fitting coils; and the lack of movement artifacts. This allows characterization of normal and abnormal tissues with unprecedented resolution and sensitivity, facilitating our ability to investigate anatomical structures that are inaccessible in-vivo. This also offers the opportunity to develop today novel imaging biomarkers that will, with tomorrow’s MR technology, enable improved in-vivo assessment of the risk of disease in an individual. Post-mortem studies, however, generally rely on the fixation of specimen to inhibit tissue decay which starts as soon as tissue is deprived from its blood supply. Unfortunately, fixation of tissues substantially alters tissue diffusivity profiles. In addition, ex-vivo DW-MRI requires particular care when packaging the specimen because the presence of microscopic air bubbles gives rise to geometric and intensity image distortion. In this work, we considered the specific requirements of post-mortem imaging and designed an optimized protocol for ex-vivo whole brain DW-MRI using a human clinical 3T scanner. Human clinical 3T scanners are available to a large number of researchers and, unlike most animal scanners, have a bore diameter large enough to image a whole human brain. Our optimized protocol will facilitate widespread ex-vivo investigations of large specimen.

Paper Details

Date Published: 18 March 2015
PDF: 13 pages
Proc. SPIE 9412, Medical Imaging 2015: Physics of Medical Imaging, 94122U (18 March 2015); doi: 10.1117/12.2082387
Show Author Affiliations
Benoit Scherrer, Boston Children's Hospital (United States)
Harvard Medical School (United States)
Onur Afacan, Boston Children's Hospital (United States)
Harvard Medical School (United States)
Aymeric Stamm, Boston Children's Hospital (United States)
Harvard Medical School (United States)
Jolene Singh, Boston Children's Hospital (United States)
Harvard Medical School (United States)
Simon K. Warfield, Boston Children's Hospital (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9412:
Medical Imaging 2015: Physics of Medical Imaging
Christoph Hoeschen; Despina Kontos, Editor(s)

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