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Abstract #1745

In vivo assement of neurite density in the preterm brain using diffusion magnetic resonance imaging

Serena J Counsell 1,2 , Hui Zhang 3 , Emer Hughes 1,2 , Heather Steele 1 , Nora Tusor 1,2 , Gareth Ball 1,2 , Antonios Makropoulos 1,2 , Daniel C Alexander 3 , Joseph V Hajnal 1,2 , and A David Edwards 1,2

1 Centre for the Developing Brain, King's College London, London, London, United Kingdom, 2 Division of Imaging Sciences & Biomedical Engineering, King's College London, London, London, United Kingdom, 3 Dept of Computer Science & Centre for Medical Image Computing, University College London, London, United Kingdom

Preterm birth results in dysmaturation of cerebral grey and white matter (WM). Our aims were to assess neurite density index (NDI) in WM and thalamus in the preterm brain at term equivalent age. We studied 44 preterm infants, median (range) GA at birth 30 (24+232+5) and post-menstrual age (PMA) at scan 42+1 (38+347+1) weeks. Diffusion MRI was acquired in 2 shells; b value 750 s/mm2 , 32 directions and b value 2500 s/mm2, 64 directions at 3T. Our initial results suggest that neurite density index is more sensitive than fractional anisotropy to WM microstructural changes associated with maturation.

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