Chenyang Michael Wang1, Mark Elliott2, Tom Connick, Walter Witschey3, Abram Voorhees4, Joe Calabro4, Erin McArdle, Ari Borthakur2, Ravi Reddy2
1Bioengineering, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, USA; 2Radiology, University of Pennsylvania; 3Biophysics and Molecular Biology, University of Pennsylvania; 4Siemens Healthcare
Sodium MRI is highly sensitive to the initial stage of intervertebral disc degeneration, which involves the break down of proteoglycans. Sodium MRI applications are limited by its inherent low SNR. We took advantage of higher magnetic field strength and ultra short TE pulse sequences to increase SNR of bovine intervertebral disc MRI. In addition, we obtained separately the T2* and spin densities of the long and short T2* components. The ability to separately quantify relaxation parameters of the long and short T2* components would improve the accuracy of tissue sodium measurement using phantoms of known sodium concentration.