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Abstract #0018

High-Throughput &[micro]MRI Phenotyping of Right Ventricular Mouse Embryonic Abnormalities: Requirement for Intravascular Contrast Enhancement

Aristizabal O, Turnbull D, Gutstein D, Schneider A, Wadghiri Y, Gray E
New York University School of Medicine

&[micro]MRI is becoming a well established screening tool to phenotype mouse mutants during development. The characterization of the mouse cardiac right ventricle (RV) is particularly challenging when conventional histology is used to evaluate the morphology of this asymmetric, crescent-shaped chamber. Based on a &[micro]MRI protocol initially proposed by Smith B.R. et al. (1994), we imaged a line of connexin43 (Cx43) mutant mouse embryos that are known to have heart malformations. Using a high throughput setup, highly detailed 3D image datasets (50&[micro]m isotropic resolution) can be obtained simultaneously from 4 fixed specimen previously infused with Gd-based contrast agents. Our results demonstrate that RV abnormalities in the Cx43 mouse line can be more reliably visualized with &[micro]MRI than with conventional histology. More importantly we show that the use of contrast agent can be critical to visualize the disruption of the architecture of the muscle wall in the embryonic heart, a phenotyp