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Abstract #0989

DWI Assessment of a transgenic mouse model for ALS

Abbott A, Towner R, Hensley K, Blindauer R, Tesiram Y, West M, Abdelmoaty H
Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a fatal neurodegenerative disease affecting the upper and lower motor neurons. ALS affects 60,000 to 100,000 individual at any given time. The disease is inexorable with no effective cure with 1-5 years life expectancy following onset. This study examined the spinal cords of G93A-SOD1 mice, a transgenic mouse model for ALS, with diffusion weighted imaging (DWI). Measuring translational diffusion of water with DWI allows the detection of biophysical changes in the spinal cord. A measure of this increase with time can shed light on where and when damage occurs in the spinal cord. This study demonstrates that DWI can provide non-invasive evaluation of ALS pathology without having to obtain invasive histology.