Project Title: WP2 The biophysical basis of MR signals
(Theme 1 'Anatomical imaging' )
Supervisor: Prof. Harald E. Möller
Centre: Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Leipzig
Secondment: FMRIB (Oxford)
Objective: To investigate on the biophysical basis of Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) signals in quantitative experiments (e.g. relaxation times, susceptibility, magnetization transfer).
Description: The improved sensitivity of ultra-high field MRI (≥ 7T) permits the extraction of highly specific information on tissue composition. Quantitative maps for susceptibility, relaxation times and magnetization transfer have been shown to carry additional information that depends on tissue micro-structure and orientation. In order to improve the understanding of the biophysical model behind MRI signals, the ESR will use a combination of MRI techniques to provide simultaneous quantitative maps of in vivo and ex vivo samples. Ex vivo results will be combined with other quantitative imaging techniques, such as Particle Induced X-rays Emission (PIXE), in order to correlate the chemical content of tissues to MRI signals. Additional techniques, like histology, will also be used. The ESR will determine which MR parameters or combination of MR parameters can be used to estimate biophysical characteristics of tissues. Such characteristics will then provide an additional clinical tool for observing changes in the brain tissues that are related to pathological conditions.
Results: (ongoing) Quantitative measurements of T1, T2* and susceptibility using the ME-MP2RAGE sequence.
(early stage / envisaged) Simultaneous quantitative measurements of magnetization transfer parameters and susceptibility; Orientation dependence of magnetization transfer parameters in cerebral tissues; Comparison of quantitative magnetic resonance and chemical content maps in the human brain.
Outreach: The clinical and research relevance of the project will be presented to school students in organized visits to the institute.
Meetings Attended: Joint Annual Meeting ISMRM/ESMRMB 2014 (Milan)
Publications: (Anticipated) 2 peer reviewed journal papers, 3 abstracts submitted to an international conference (ISMRM, ESMRMB and/or HMB).