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Abstract #0528

Using Quantitative MT- and CEST-derived Metrics to Evaluate Longitudinal Tissue Changes in the Spinal Cord of Multiple Sclerosis Patients at 3T

Richard D Lawless1,2, Quinn Weinberg2, Haley Feiler2, Sam By3, Alex Smith4, Francesca Bagnato5, and Seth Smith1,2,6

1Department of Biomedical Engineering, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN, United States, 2Vanderbilt University Institute of Imaging Science, Nashville, TN, United States, 3Phillips Healthcare, Baltimore, MD, United States, 4University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom, 5Department of Neurology, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN, United States, 6Department of Radiology and Radiological Science, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN, United States

Conventional T1 and T2 weighted MRI are ubiquitously used to diagnose and monitor disease progression in multiple sclerosis, but are only sensitive to later-stage inflammatory lesions and atrophy. Imaging biomarkers sensitive to tissue changes earlier in disease pathology may have significant implications in the diagnosis and prognosis of MS. Quantitative magnetization transfer (qMT) and chemical exchange saturation transfer (CEST) MRI have shown sensitivity to macromolecules and tissue biochemistry, respectively. In this work, we investigate quantitatively derived metrics from qMT and CEST as potential biomarkers for pathological changes which precede lesion formation.

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