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Keywords:

  • TSE imaging;
  • 31P imaging;
  • calf muscle;
  • phosphocreatine;
  • high field 31P-MRI

Purpose

The development and implementation of a spectrally selective 3D-Turbo Spin Echo sequence for quantitative mapping of phosphocreatine (PCr) concentration in different muscles of the lower leg of healthy volunteers both at 3 T and 7 T.

Methods

Nine healthy volunteers were recruited, all of whom where scanned at 3 T and 7 T. Three dimensional PCr concentration maps were obtained after images were corrected for B1 inhomogeneities, T1 relaxation weighting, and partial volume of fatty tissue in the muscles. Two volunteers performed plantar flexions inside the magnet, and the oxidative capacity of their muscles was estimated.

Results

Three dimensional PCr concentration maps were obtained, with full muscle coverage and nominal voxel size of 0.52 mL at both fields. At 7 T a 2.7-fold increase of signal-to-noise ratio was achieved compared to 3 T.

Conclusion

Imaging 31P metabolites at 7 T allowed for significant increase in signal to noise ratio compared to imaging at 3 T, while quantification of the PCr concentration remained unaffected. The importance of such an increase in signal-to-noise ratio is 2-fold, first higher resolution images with reduced partial volume effects can be acquired, and second multiple measurements such as dynamic imaging of PCr post-exercise, 31P magnetization transfer, or other 1H measurements, can be acquired in a single imaging session. Magn Reson Med 70:1619–1625, 2013. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.