Aliya Gifford1, Seth A. Smith2,3, Ali Fatemi1,2, SakkuBai Naidu2,4, Peter C. van Zijl2,3, Gerald V. Raymond1,4
1Department of Neurogenetics, Kennedy Krieger Institute, Baltimore, MD, USA; 2F.M. Kirby Research Center, Kennedy Krieger Institute, Baltimore, MD, USA; 3Russel H. Morgan Department of Radiology and Radiological Science, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, USA; 4Department of Neurology, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, USA
Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) may be sensitive to changes in tissue microstructure and therefore is useful in quantitatively assessing pathway-specific changes known, pathologically, to exist in the cervical spinal cord of adrenomyeloneuropathy patients. We acquired DTI of the cervical cord in nine healthy volunteers and twenty AMN patients. Lateral and dorsal columns were reconstructed and DTI-derived metrics analyzed for the C1-C3 cervical segment. Results show an increase in perpendicular diffusivity from 0.52 (controls) to 0.57 (AMN) (P<0.3). These observations are in agreement with expectations from pathology indicating demyelination, suggesting that quantitative DTI analysis may enhance clinical evaluation of this disease.