Project description:OBJECTIVE:To compare the most commonly used labeling approaches, flow-sensitive alternating inversion recovery (FAIR) and pseudocontinuous arterial spin labeling (pCASL), for renal perfusion measurement using arterial spin labeling (ASL) MRI. METHODS:Multi-delay FAIR and pCASL were performed in 16 middle-aged healthy volunteers on two different occasions at 3T. Relative perfusion-weighted signal (PWS), temporal SNR (tSNR), renal blood flow (RBF), and arterial transit time (ATT) were calculated for the cortex and medulla in both kidneys. Bland-Altman plots, intra-class correlation coefficient, and within-subject coefficient of variation were used to assess reliability and agreement between measurements. RESULTS:For the first visit, RBF was 362?±?57 and 140?±?47 mL/min/100 g, and ATT was 0.47?±?0.13 and 0.70?±?0.10 s in cortex and medulla, respectively, using FAIR; RBF was 201?±?72 and 84?±?27 mL/min/100 g, and ATT was 0.71?±?0.25 and 0.86?±?0.12 s in cortex and medulla, respectively, using pCASL. For both labeling approaches, RBF and ATT values were not significantly different between visits. Overall, FAIR showed higher PWS and tSNR. Moreover, repeatability of perfusion parameters was better using FAIR. DISCUSSION:This study showed that compared to (balanced) pCASL, FAIR perfusion values were significantly higher and more comparable between visits.
Project description:A number of imaging readout schemes are proposed for renal arterial spin labeling (ASL) to quantify kidney cortex perfusion, including gradient echo-based methods of balanced fast field echo (bFFE) and gradient-echo echo-planar imaging (GE-EPI), or spin echo-based schemes of spin-echo echo-planar imaging (SE-EPI) and turbo spin-echo (TSE). Here, we compare these two-dimensional (2D) imaging schemes to evaluate the optimal imaging scheme for pulsed ASL (PASL) assessment of human kidney cortex perfusion at 3 T. Ten healthy volunteers with normal renal function were scanned using each 2D multi-slice imaging scheme, in combination with a respiratory triggered flow-sensitive alternating inversion recovery (FAIR) ASL scheme on a 3 T Philips Achieva scanner. All volunteers returned for a second identical scan session within two weeks of the first scan session. Comparisons were made between the imaging schemes in terms of perfusion-weighted image (PWI) signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) and perfusion quantification, temporal SNR (tSNR), spatial coverage, and repeatability. For each imaging scheme, the renal cortex perfusion was calculated (bFFE: 276 ± 29 mL/100g/min, GE-EPI: 222 ± 18 mL/100g/min, SE-EPI: 201 ± 36 mL/100g/min, and TSE: 200 ± 20 mL/100g/min). Perfusion was found to be higher for GE-based readouts when compared with SE-based readouts, with significantly higher measured perfusion for the bFFE readout when compared with all other schemes (p < 0.05), attributed to the greater vascular signal present. Despite the PWI-SNR being significantly lower for SE-EPI when compared with all other schemes (p < 0.05), the SE-EPI readout gave the highest tSNR, and was found to be the most reproducible scheme for the assessment of kidney cortex, with a coefficient of variation (CoV) of 17.2%, whilst minimizing variability of the perfusion-weighted signal across slices for whole-kidney perfusion assessment. For the assessment of kidney cortex perfusion using 2D readout schemes, SE-EPI provides optimal tSNR, minimal variability across slices, and repeatable data acquired in a short scan time with low specific absorption rate.
Project description:PURPOSE:To investigate the correspondence between arterial spin labeling (ASL) flow-sensitive alternating inversion recovery (FAIR) and ferumoxytol DCE MRI for the assessment of placental intervillous perfusion. METHODS:Ten pregnant macaques in late second trimester were imaged at 3 T using a 2D ASL FAIR, with and without outer-volume saturation pulses used to control the bolus width, and a 3D ferumoxytol DCE-MRI acquisition. The ASL tagged/control pairs were averaged, subtracted, and normalized to create perfusion ratio maps. Contrast arrival time and uptake slope were estimated by fitting the DCE data to a sigmoid function. Macaques (N = 4) received interleukin-1? to induce inflammation and disrupt perfusion. RESULTS:The FAIR tag modification with outer-volume saturation reduced the median ASL ratio percentage compared with conventional FAIR (0.64% ± 1.42% versus 0.71% ± 2.00%; P < .05). Extended ferumoxytol arrival times (34 ± 25 seconds) were observed across the placenta. No significant DCE signal change was measured in fetal tissue ( - 0.6% ± 3.0%; P = .52) or amniotic fluid (1.9% ± 8.8%; P = .59). High ASL ratio was significantly correlated with early arrival time and high uptake slope (P < .05), but ASL signal was not above noise in late-DCE-enhancing regions. No significant differences were observed in perfusion measurements between the interleukin-1? and controls (P > .05). CONCLUSION:The ASL-FAIR and ferumoxytol DCE-MRI methods are feasible to detect early blood delivery to the macaque placenta. Outer volume saturation reduced the high macrovascular ASL signal. Interleukin-1? exposure did not alter placental intervillous perfusion. An endogenous-labeling perfusion technique is limited due to extended transit times for flow within the placenta beyond the immediate vicinity of the maternal spiral arteries.
Project description:Acceleration selective arterial spin labeling (AccASL) is a spatially non-selective labeling technique, used in traditional ASL methods, which labels spins based on their flow acceleration rather than spatial localization. The exact origin of the AccASL signal within the vasculature is not completely understood. To obtain more insight into this, the acceleration selective module was performed followed by a velocity selective module, which is used in velocity selective arterial spin labeling (VS-ASL).Nine healthy volunteers were scanned with various combinations of the control and label conditions in both the acceleration and velocity selective module. The cut-off acceleration (0.59 m/s2) or velocity (2 cm/s) was kept constant in one module, while it was varied over a large range in the other module. With the right subtractions this resulted in AccASL, VS-ASL, combined AccASL and VS-ASL signal, and signal from one module with crushing from the other.The label created with AccASL has an overlap of approximately 50% in the vascular region with VS-ASL, but also originates from smaller vessels closer to the capillaries.AccASL is able to label spins both in the macro- and meso-vasculature, as well as in the microvasculature.
Project description:PURPOSE:For free-breathing renal perfusion imaging using arterial spin labeling (ASL), retrospective image realignment has been found essential to reduce subtraction artifacts and, independently, background suppression has been demonstrated to reduce physiologic noise. However, negative results on ASL precision and accuracy have been reported for the combination of both. In this study, the effect of background suppression -level in combination with image registration on free-breathing renal ASL signal quality, with registration either on ASL-images themselves or guided by additionally acquired fat-images, was investigated. The results from free-breathing acquisitions were compared with the reference paced-breathing motion compensation strategy. METHODS:Pseudocontinuous ASL (pCASL) data with additional fat-images were acquired from 10 subjects at 1.5T with varying background suppression levels during free-breathing and paced-breathing. Images were registered using the ASL-images themselves (ASLReg) or using their corresponding fat-images (FatReg). Temporal signal-to-noise ratio (tSNR) served to evaluate precision and perfusion weighted signal (PWS) to assess accuracy. RESULTS:In combination with image registration, background suppression significantly improved tSNR by 50% (P < .05). For heavy suppression, ASLReg and FatReg showed similar performance in terms of tSNR and PWS. Background suppression with two inversion pulses induced a small, nonsignificant (P > .05) PWS reduction, but increased PWS accuracy. When applying heavy background suppression, free-breathing acquisitions resulted in similar ASL-quality to paced-breathing acquisitions. CONCLUSION:Background suppression was found beneficial for free-breathing renal pCASL precision without compromising accuracy, despite motion challenges. In combination with ASLReg or FatReg, background suppression enabled clinically viable free-breathing renal pCASL.
Project description:BACKGROUND:The choroid plexus is a major contributor to the generation of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) and the maintenance of its electrolyte and metabolite balance. Here, we sought to characterize the blood flow dynamics of the choroid plexus using arterial spin labeling (ASL) MRI to establish ASL as a non-invasive tool for choroid plexus function and disease studies. METHODS:Seven healthy volunteers were imaged on a 3T MR scanner. ASL images were acquired with 12 labeling durations and post labeling delays. Regions of the choroid plexus were manually segmented on high-resolution T1 weighted images. Choroid plexus perfusion was characterized with a dynamic ASL perfusion model. Cerebral gray matter perfusion was also quantified for comparison. RESULTS:Kinetics of the ASL signal were clearly different in the choroid plexus than in gray matter. The choroid plexus has a significantly longer T1 than the gray matter (2.33?±?0.30 s vs. 1.85?±?0.10 s, p?<?0.02). The arterial transit time was 1.24?±?0.20 s at the choroid plexus. The apparent blood flow to the choroid plexus was measured to be 39.5?±?10.1 ml/100 g/min and 0.80?±?0.31 ml/min integrated over the posterior lateral ventricles in both hemispheres. Correction with the choroid plexus weight yielded a blood flow of 80 ml/100 g/min. CONCLUSIONS:Our findings suggest that ASL can provide a clinically feasible option to quantify the dynamic characteristics of choroid plexus blood flow. It also provides useful reference values of the choroid plexus perfusion. The long T1 of the choroid plexus may suggest the transport of water from arterial blood to the CSF, potentially providing a method to quantify CSF generation.
Project description:HIV enters the brain soon after infection causing neuronal damage and microglial/astrocyte dysfunction leading to neuropsychological impairment. We examined the impact of HIV on resting cerebral blood flow (rCBF) within the lenticular nuclei (LN) and visual cortex (VC).This cross-sectional study used arterial spin labeling MRI (ASL-MRI) to measure rCBF within 33 HIV+ and 26 HIV- subjects. Nonparametric Wilcoxon rank sum test assessed rCBF differences due to HIV serostatus. Classification and regression tree (CART) analysis determined optimal rCBF cutoffs for differentiating HIV serostatus. The effects of neuropsychological impairment and infection duration on rCBF were evaluated.rCBF within the LN and VC were significantly reduced for HIV+ compared to HIV- subjects. A 2-tiered CART approach using either LN rCBF < or =50.09 mL/100 mL/min or LN rCBF >50.09 mL/100 mL/min but VC rCBF < or =37.05 mL/100 mL/min yielded an 88% (29/33) sensitivity and an 88% (23/26) specificity for differentiating by HIV serostatus. HIV+ subjects, including neuropsychologically unimpaired, had reduced rCBF within the LN (p = 0.02) and VC (p = 0.001) compared to HIV- controls. A temporal progression of brain involvement occurred with LN rCBF significantly reduced for both acute/early (<1 year of seroconversion) and chronic HIV-infected subjects, whereas rCBF in the VC was diminished for only chronic HIV-infected subjects.Resting cerebral blood flow (rCBF) using arterial spin labeling MRI has the potential to be a noninvasive neuroimaging biomarker for assessing HIV in the brain. rCBF reductions that occur soon after seroconversion possibly reflect neuronal or vascular injury among HIV+ individuals not yet expressing neuropsychological impairment.
Project description:Cerebral blood flow (CBF) is an informative physiological marker for tissue health. Arterial spin labeling (ASL) is a noninvasive MRI method of measuring this parameter, but it has proven difficult to measure white matter (WM) CBF due to low intrinsic contrast-to-noise ratio compared with gray matter (GM). Here we combine ultra-high field and optimal sampling strategy (OSS) ASL to investigate WM CBF in reasonable scan times.A FAIR-based ASL sequence at 7T was combined with a real-time-feedback OSS technique, to iteratively improve post-label image acquisition times (TIs) on a tissue- and subject-specific basis to obtain WM CBF quantification.It was found 77% of WM voxels gave a reasonable CBF fit. Averaged WM CBF for these voxels was found to be 16.3 ± 1.5 mL/100 g/min (discarding partial-volumed voxels). The generated TI schedule was also significantly different when altering the OSS weighted-tissue-mask, favoring longer TIs in WM.WM CBF could be reasonably quantified in over 75% of identified voxels, from a total preparation and scan time of 15 min. OSS results suggest longer TIs should be used versus general GM ASL settings; this may become more important in WM disease studies.