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Abstract #0187

Improving SNR Per Unit Time in Diffusion Imaging Using a Blipped-CAIPIRINHA Simultaneous Multi-Slice EPI Acquisition

Kawin Setsompop1,2, J Cohen-Adad1,2, J A. McNab1,2, B A. Gagoski3, V J. Wedeen1,2, L L. Wald1,2

1Radiology, A. A. Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging, Massachusetts General Hospital, Charlestown, MA, United States; 2Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, United States; 3EECS, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA, United States

The acquisition of simultaneous slices using EPI has the potential to increase the number of diffusion directions obtained per unit time, thus allowing more diffusion encoding in HARDI and DSI acquisitions in a clinically relevant scan time. In this work, we apply simultaneous multi-slice method using a novel blipped-CAIPIRINHA technique to lower the g-factor penalty of parallel imaging. We validate the method using g-factor maps and bedpostx with HARDI acquisitions in the brain. We show that with this technique a 10 minutes, 64-direction HARDI acquisition can be acquired in ~3 minutes at no appreciable loss in SNR or diffusion information.