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Abstract #2482

Robust method for detection of small variations in relaxation parameters and free water content in substantia nigra of Parkinson's disease patients.

Krzysztof Dzieciol1, Elene Iordanishvili1, Zaheer Abbas1,2, Michael Winterdahl3, Adjmal Nahimi3, and Nadim Jon Shah1,2

1Medical Imaging Physics, Institute of Neuroscience and Medicine, Forschungszentrum Jülich, Jülich, Germany, 2Department of Neurology, Faculty of Medicine, RWTH Aachen, JARA, Aachen, Germany, 3Nuclear Medicine and PET Center, Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark

Parkinson's disease patients were investigated in order to reveal changes inside region-of-interest – substantia nigra. 31 volunteers were scanned using a well-established, quantitative free water mapping protocol. The region-of-interest is too small to obtain reliable segmentation for region-based analysis. Therefore, statistical, voxel-wise analysis of registered quantitative maps was performed. It revealed a decrease in the metrics (free water content, T1, T2* and combination of all three) in the vicinity of substantia nigra. We conclude that the reduction in total free water content could be due to a disruption of the deep grey matter integrity.

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