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Abstract #3989

Is Bound Water a Surrogate for Collagen Matrix Density? Insights from 1H Zero Echo-Time MRI

Alan C. Seifert 1 , Suzanne L. Wehrli 2 , Henry H. Ong 1 , and Felix W. Wehrli 1

1 Radiology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, United States, 2 NMR Core Facility, Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA, United States

The very shortest-T2 (~20-50 s) component of bone 1H signal arises from the collagen backbone of bone matrix. We present images of bone matrix collagen from lamb tibial cortical bone (fully D2O-exchanged, air-dried to remove pore water, and fully H2O-hydrated) at 9.4T using a zero echo-time sequence. NMR spectroscopy confirms the removal of the narrow-line signal from the D2O-exchanged bone, and presence of the collagen-associated 40-kHz splitting in all three bones. Although collagen 1H signal is visible at 9.4T with 245-mT/m gradients, this signal may still be beyond the reach of clinical scanners with more limited gradient strengths.

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