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Abstract #2224

Macromolecule suppressed GABA levels show no relationship with age in children and adolescents

Tiffany Bell1,2,3, Mehak Stokoe1,2,3, and Ashley Harris1,2,3
1Department of Radiology, University of Calgary, Calgary, AB, Canada, 2Hotchkiss Brain Institute, University of Calgary, Calgary, AB, Canada, 3Alberta Children's Hospital Research Institute, University of Calgary, Calgary, AB, Canada

Studies have shown that GABA+ increases with age during development, however roughly 50% of this signal reflects macromolecules. It is often assumed that macromolecule levels are stable, but there has been no attempt to directly validate this in youth. Here, we use a sequence specifically designed to suppress the macromolecule signal that contaminates the measured GABA+ signal when using MEGA-PRESS. We show no relationship between macromolecule-suppressed GABA and age in youth aged 7-14 years. We suggest increases in macromolecule levels may drive previously shown relationships between age and GABA+ levels, highlighting the importance of controlling for macromolecules in MRS analyses.

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