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Abstract #0902

In vivo MRI can assess differences in cell density and size of different Cryptococcus species in brain lesions.

Liesbeth Vanherp1, Kristof Govaerts1, Amy Hillen2, Jennifer Poelmans3, Katrien Lagrou4, Greetje Vande Velde1, and Uwe Himmelreich1
1Biomedical MRI, University of Leuven, Leuven, Belgium, 2Department of Cell and Molecular Biology, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden, 3Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson, Beerse, Belgium, 4Laboratory of Clinical Bacteriology and Mycology, University of Leuven, Leuven, Belgium

Multi-parametric MRI was correlated with in vivo Fibred Confocal Fluorescence Microscopy and histology in two preclinical models of cryptococcosis. Increased ADCs and T2 relaxation times were linked to differences in capsule size and associated fungal density in brain lesions caused by the two pathogenic fungi Cryptococcus neoformans and C. gattii. This provides not only a non-invasive means to assess one of the most important virulence factors of Cryptococci in preclinical research but may also affect patient management by providing a method for differential diagnosis.

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