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Abstract #2088

T2*-Weighted Inner-Field-of-View Echo-Planar Imaging of the Spinal Cord

Jrgen Finsterbusch 1,2

1 Department of Systems Neuroscience, University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf, Hamburg, Germany, 2 Neuroimage Nord, University Medical Centers Hamburg-Kiel-Lbeck, Hamburg-Kiel-Lbeck, Germany

The feasibility of inner-field-of-view EPI based on 2D-selective RF excitations to acquire T2*-weighted images of the human spinal cord in vivo is demonstrated. Compared to conventional, slice-selective EPI, the readout echo train is shortened reducing geometric distortions and lower sections of the spinal cord can be covered without the need for excessive FOVs to avoid aliasing artifacts. Like for conventional EPI, slice-specific z-shimming can be applied to minimize signal dropouts related to through-slice dephasing. Thus, BOLD-based functional imaging may become feasible throughout the spinal cord.

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