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Abstract #0729

Multi-shell Diffusion MRI Provides Better Performance in Discriminating Parkinsons Disease

Silvia De Santis 1 , Nicola Toschi 2,3 , Derek K Jones 1 , Claudio Lucetti 4 , Stefano Diciotti 5 , Marco Giannelli 6 , and Carlo Tessa 7

1 CUBRIC Cardiff University, Cardiff, United Kingdom, 2 Medical Physics Section, Department of Biomedicine and Prevention, Faculty of Medicine, University of Rome Tor Vergata, Italy, 3 Department of Radiology, A.A. Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging, MGH and Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, United States, 4 Division of Neurology Unit, Versilia Hospital, Lido di Camaiore (Lu), Italy, 5 Department of Electrical, Electronic, and Information Engineering Guglielmo Marconi, University of Bologna, Cesena, Italy, 6 Unit of Medical Physics, Pisa University Hospital Azienda Ospedaliero-Universitaria Pisana, Pisa, Italy, 7 Division of Radiology Unit, Versilia Hospital, Lido di Camaiore (Lu), Italy

Parkinson's disease (PD) is associated with the death of dopamine-generating cells in the substantia nigra. We apply the composite hindered and restricted model of diffusion (CHARMED) and the stretched exponential model (SEM) to test the ability of multi-shell methods to differentiate between Parkinson's Disease (PD) patients and healthy controls. We found that multi-shell diffusion MRI provides significantly higher sensitivity and specificity to microstructural WM alterations in PD when compared to conventional DTI. Employing more advanced models such as CHARMED or SEM to study neurodegenerative pathologies may aid the interpretation of otherwise aspecific differences which can be detected with DTI.

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