Metabolite diffusion up to very high b in the mouse brain in vivo: Revisiting the potential correlation between relaxation and diffusion properties

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To assess the potential correlation between metabolites diffusion and relaxation in the mouse brain, which is of importance for interpreting and modeling metabolite diffusion based on pure geometry, irrespective of relaxation properties (multicompartmental relaxation or surface relaxivity).


A new diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance spectroscopy sequence is introduced, dubbed “STE-LASER,” which presents several nice properties, in particular the absence of cross-terms with selection gradients and a very clean localization. Metabolite diffusion is then measured in a large voxel in the mouse brain at 11.7 Tesla using a cryoprobe, resulting in excellent signal-to-noise ratio, up to very high b-values under different echo time, mixing time, and diffusion time combinations.


Our results suggest that the correlation between relaxation and diffusion properties is extremely small or even nonexistent for metabolites in the mouse brain.


The present work strongly supports the interpretation and modeling of metabolite diffusion primarily based on geometry, irrespective of relaxation properties, at least under current experimental conditions. Magn Reson Med 77:1390–1398, 2017. © 2016 The Authors Magnetic Resonance in Medicine published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs License, which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is non-commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made.

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