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Abstract #1768

Sensitivity of STEAM diffusion MRI to permeability in white matter tissue: a simulation study

Ioana Diana Oprea1, Andrada Ianus2, Olga Ciccarelli3, and Ivana Drobnjak4

1Medical Physics, University College London, London, United Kingdom, 2Computer Science, University College London, 3Institute of Neurology, University College London, 4University College London

This study investigates the sensitivity of the Stimulated-Echo Acquisition Mode (STEAM) diffusion-weighted signal to permeability quantified with water exchange time $$$\tau_{ex}$$$. In order to do this, Monte Carlo simulations were generated for a range of histologically-plausible $$$\tau_{ex}$$$ and practical scanner acquisition parameters. The results suggest that on the standard clinical scanner (G=70mT/m), STEAM estimates short exchange times (<0.9s), which are characteristic in tissue with myelin damage, while tissue with longer exchange times (>1.5s) is practically indistinguishable from impermeable tissue. The Connectome scanner (G=300mT/m) estimates a much wider range, however needs careful optimisation since the resolution limit is highly dependent on the sequence parameters and SNR’s.

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