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Abstract #4299

Alterations of Water Diffusion and Magnetization Transfer Metrics in the Brains of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis Patients

Florian Borsodi 1 , Christian Langkammer 2 , Valeriu Culea 1 , Lukas Pirpamer 1 , Stefan Quasthoff 1 , Christian Enzinger 1,3 , Reinhold Schmidt 1 , Franz Fazekas 1 , and Stefan Ropele 1

1 Dept. of Neurology, Medical University of Graz, Graz, Austria, 2 MGH/HST Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, United States, 3 Div. of Neuroradiology, Dept. of Radiology, Medical University of Graz, Graz, Austria

Previous studies showed microstructual tissue changes in the corticospinal tract (CST) of patients suffering from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), but were conflicting in their findings and their relation to clinical function. In our study, we investigated diffusion properties and magnetization transfer in the CST and other major white matter tracts of 33 ALS patients and 35 age-matched healthy controls, and how they relate to disease duration and disability. We found subtle but diffuse microstructural tissue changes in the CST only, which caused a regional increase in the radial diffusivity and a decrease of the magnetization transfer ratio, but were unrelated to clinical findings.

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