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Abstract #0301

Feasibility of Measuring Microstructural Features of Systems with Intermediate Exchange and Sub-Cellular Compartmentalization Using Diffusion MRI

Irina Kezele1, Philip Batchelor2, Cyril Poupon1, Jean-Franois Mangin1, Denis Le Bihan1, Daniel C. Alexander3

1NeuroSpin, CEA, Gif-sur-Yvette, France; 2King's College , London, United Kingdom; 3University College , London, United Kingdom

We propose an analytic three-compartment diffusion model where the intra-cellular architecture and exchange between the compartments are considered. This model can explain cell characteristic sizes and cell-membrane permeability, the features that are suggested to be related to different soft tissue pathologies (e.g., malignancy). Using the proposed model, we deliver an optimized imaging protocol to measure the relevant model parameters. The simulation results demonstrate the accuracy of estimating the parameters with both negligible and moderate membrane permeability, assuming pulsed-gradient spin-echo sequence and scanner parameters suitable for small animal imaging. The potential for new biomarker definition at the micro-scale is thus suggested.