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Abstract #3531

Can unprecedented echo times in human diffusion weighted fMRI help reveal its biological underpinnings?

Suryanarayana Umesh Rudrapatna1, Lars Mueller1, Marcello Venzi2, Richard G Wise1, and Derek K Jones1

1CUBRIC, School of Psychology, Cardiff University, Cardiff, United Kingdom, 2School of Physics and Astronomy, Cardiff University, Cardiff, United Kingdom

The brain versus vein dilemma in BOLD fMRI has spurred research towards more direct correlates of neuronal activation. Diffusion-weighted fMRI (dfMRI) emerged as a potential alternative 17 years ago. However, its signal origins and utility have been greatly debated. In this work, we combine ultra-high-gradients and spiral readout to characterize dfMRI contrast in humans in parameter spaces (TE, b-value, SNR and resolution) that have never been accessible before. Varying TE over a wide range while keeping the b-value fixed allowed us to detect significant hemodynamic contributions to dfMRI contrast at a b-value of 1200 s/mm2.

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