Metabolic imaging of multiple X-nucleus resonances

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This study describes a technique for fast imaging of x-nuclei metabolites. Due to increased sensitivity and larger chemical shift dispersion at high magnetic fields, images of multiple metabolites can be obtained simultaneously by selective excitation of their resonances with a multifrequency selective radiofrequency pulse at any desired flip angle. This aim is achieved by combining a three-dimensional gradient echo imaging sequence with a Shinnar-LeRoux optimized excitation pulse. A proper choice of bandwidth, imaging matrix size, and field of view allows using the chemical shift dispersion of the different resonances to completely separate their images within one large field of view. The method of fast metabolic imaging is illustrated with 13C measurements of a phantom containing a solution of 13C labeled glucose, lactate, and sodium octanoate and by dynamic measurements of the 31P metabolites phosphocreatine and β-adenosine triphosphate in human femoral muscle in vivo, both at 7T. With dynamic selective 31P imaging of the larger part of the upper leg, phosphocreatine signal intensity changes of specific muscles can be studied simultaneously by analyzing the sum of phosphocreatine signals within arbitrarily shaped regions of interest following the muscles' contours. This concept of dynamic metabolic imaging can be applied to other organs and further expanded to other MR-detectable nuclei and metabolites. Magn Reson Med, 2013. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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