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Abstract #4539

Diffusion Weighted Imaging (DWI) in the Rabbit Model of Atherosclerosis: Characterization and Quantification of Water Diffusion in Six-Month Old Aortic Plaque

Philip M. Robson1, 2, Claudia Calcagno1, 2, Sarayu Ramachandran1, 2, Venkatesh Mani1, 2, Zahi A. Fayad1, 2

1Translational and Molecular Imaging Institute, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, United States; 2Radiology, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, United States

We investigate in vivo diffusion weighted imaging in the rabbit model of atherosclerosis at 3 T using SE-DW single-shot EPI, with 12 different b-values equally spaced up to 600 s/mm2, and 16 slices in a 20-minute protocol. The average diffusion coefficient was 1.19x10-3 mm2/s and the average two-tailed span of the 90% confidence interval for the diffusion coefficient was 0.3x10-3 mm2/s, which is sufficient to distinguish normal vessel wall, lipid core, and free water. DWI is a feasible technique for quantitative characterization of atherosclerotic plaque in the NZW rabbit model in vivo and may provide important information about high-risk plaques.