Lei Huang1, Shu-Wei Sun1,2, Sheng-Kwei Song3, Peter Hayes1, Andre Obenaus1,4
1Radiation Medicine, Loma Linda University, Loma Linda, CA, USA; 2Biomedical Engineering, Loma Linda University, Loma Linda, CA, USA; 3Radiology, Washington University, Saint Louis, MO, USA; 4Radiology, Loma Linda University, Loma Linda, CA, USA
Neuro-degeneration is one of the major health concerns following high-energy charged particles (HZE) radiation in space travel. In a rat model of 56Fe irradiation simulating the space environment, we assessed brain alterations in white and gray matter at 18 mo post-exposure of 0 4 Gy irradiation using DTI. The profiles of DTI-derived parameters, including Tr, RA, axial and radial diffusivity differed in the corpus callosum, hippocampus, substantia nigra and cortex. The results suggest that the sensitivity of DTI detects disturbances in white matter and gray matter which may both contribute to the progressive cognitive impairments following brain irradiation.