Ashley Williams1, Yongxian Qian2, David Bear1, Fernando Boada2, Constance Chu1
1Cartilage Restoration Laboratory, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, USA; 2MR Research Center, Department of Radiology, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, USA
Ultra-short TE-enhanced T2* mapping permits detection of short T2 components in articular cartilage that are not well-captured by standard T2 mapping. This study compared T2 and T2* maps to spatially registered microscopic optical coherence tomography and polarized light micrscopy examinations (PLM) of explanted human tibial plateau cartilage. Zonal stratifications observed on T2* maps and OCT were similar to those observed within the collagen matrix arrangement seen by PLM. Focal T2* lesions within the transitional zone corresponded to areas of collagen matrix derangement. High-resolution UTE-enhanced T2* mapping discriminates normal from abnormal collagen architecture in vitro.