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High-resolution C NMR spectroscopy of hyperpolarized succinate-1-C-2,3-d is reported in vitro and in vivo using a clinical-scale, biplanar (80cm-gap) 48.7mT permanent magnet with a high homogeneity magnetic field. Non-localized C NMR spectra were recorded at 0.52MHz resonance frequency over the torso of a tumor-bearing mouse every 2s. Hyperpolarized C NMR signals with linewidths of ∼3Hz (corresponding to ∼6ppm) were recorded in vitro (2mL in a syringe) and in vivo (over a mouse torso). Comparison of the full width at half maximum (FWHM) for C NMR spectra acquired at 48.7mT and at 4.7T in a small-animal MRI scanner demonstrates a factor of ∼12 improvement for the C resonance linewidth attainable at 48.7mT compared to that at 4.7T in vitro. C hyperpolarized succinate-1-C resonance linewidths in vivo are at least one order of magnitude narrower at 48.7mT compared to those observed in high-field (≥3T) studies employing HP contrast agents. The demonstrated high-resolution C in vivo spectroscopy could be useful for high-sensitivity spectroscopic studies involving monitoring HP agent uptake or detecting metabolism using HP contrast agents with sufficiently large C chemical shift differences.
Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
RF arrays with a large number of independent coil elements are advantageous for parallel transmission (pTx) and reception at high fields. One of the main challenges in designing RF arrays is to minimize the electromagnetic (EM) coupling between the coil elements. The induced current elimination (ICE) method, which uses additional resonator elements to cancel coils' mutual EM coupling, has proven to be a simple and efficient solution for decoupling microstrip, L/C loop, monopole and dipole arrays. However, in previous embodiments of conventional ICE decoupling, the decoupling elements acted as "magnetic-walls" with low transmit fields and consequently low MR signal near them. To solve this problem, new resonator geometries including overlapped and perpendicular decoupling loops are proposed. The new geometries were analyzed theoretically and validated in EM simulations, bench tests and MR experiments. The isolation between two closely-placed loops could be improved from about -5dB to <-45dB by using the new geometries.
Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Two diffusion-based approaches, CG (constant gradient) and FEXI (filtered exchange imaging) methods, have been previously proposed for measuring transcytolemmal water exchange rate constant k, but their accuracy and feasibility have not been comprehensively evaluated and compared. In this work, both computer simulations and cell experiments in vitro were performed to evaluate these two methods. Simulations were done with different cell diameters (5, 10, 20μm), a broad range of k values (0.02-30s) and different SNR's, and simulated k's were directly compared with the ground truth values. Human leukemia K562 cells were cultured and treated with saponin to selectively change cell transmembrane permeability. The agreement between measured k's of both methods was also evaluated. The results suggest that, without noise, the CG method provides reasonably accurate estimation of k especially when it is smaller than 10s, which is in the typical physiological range of many biological tissues. However, although the FEXI method overestimates k even with corrections for the effects of extracellular water fraction, it provides reasonable estimates with practical SNR's and more importantly, the fitted apparent exchange rate AXR showed approximately linear dependence on the ground truth k. In conclusion, either CG or FEXI method provides a sensitive means to characterize the variations in transcytolemmal water exchange rate constant k, although the accuracy and specificity is usually compromised. The non-imaging CG method provides more accurate estimation of k, but limited to large volume-of-interest. Although the accuracy of FEXI is compromised with extracellular volume fraction, it is capable of spatially mapping k in practice.
Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
MRI signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) is the key factor for image quality. Conventionally, SNR is proportional to nuclear spin polarization, which scales linearly with magnetic field strength. Yet ever-stronger magnets present numerous technical and financial limitations. Low-field MRI can mitigate these constraints with equivalent SNR from non-equilibrium 'hyperpolarization' schemes, which increase polarization by orders of magnitude independently of the magnetic field. Here, theory and experimental validation demonstrate that combination of field independent polarization (e.g. hyperpolarization) with frequency optimized MRI detection coils (i.e. multi-turn coils using the maximum allowed conductor length) results in low-field MRI sensitivity approaching and even rivaling that of high-field MRI. Four read-out frequencies were tested using samples with identical numbers of (1)H and (13)C spins. Experimental SNRs at 0.0475T were ∼40% of those obtained at 4.7T. Conservatively, theoretical SNRs at 0.0475T 1.13-fold higher than those at 4.7T were possible despite an ∼100-fold lower detection frequency, indicating feasibility of high-sensitivity MRI without technically challenging, expensive high-field magnets. The data at 4.7T and 0.0475T was obtained from different spectrometers with different RF probes. The SNR comparison between the two field strengths accounted for many differences in parameters such as system noise figures and variations in the probe detection coils including Q factors and coil diameters.
Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
A new family of optimized encoding pulses for Bloch-Siegert (BS)
mapping is introduced, as well as an algorithm to design them. The pulses are designed by numerical maximization of BS sequence sensitivity, subject to constraints that ensure low on-resonance excitation. The pulses are in all cases characterized by a constant envelope and U-shaped frequency sweep. They are validated in simulations, 7T in vivo experiments, and an experiment to measure their on-resonance excitation, and are compared to a Fermi pulse conventionally used in the BS method. The pulses are shown to produce larger phase shifts in a shorter time and with lower on-resonance excitation than the Fermi pulse, which results in lower SAR and improved
accuracy in areas of the body with large main field inhomogeneities.
Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Tuning the Fermi energy of silicon through doping leads to alignment of silicon bands with the redox active sites of photosystem I. Integrating photosystem I films with p-doped silicon results in the highest reported photocurrent enhancement for a biohybrid electrode based on photosystem I.
Copyright © 2012 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.
Dielectrophoresis has shown a wide range of applications in microfluidic devices. Force approximations utilizing the point-dipole method in dielectrophoresis have provided convenient predictions for particle motion by neglecting interactions between the particle and its surrounding electric and flow fields. The validity of this approach, however, is unclear when the particle size is comparable to the characteristic length of the channel and when the particle is in close proximity to the channel wall. To address this issue, we apply an accurate numerical approach based on the boundary-element method (BEM) to solve the coupled electric field, flow, and particle motion. This method can handle much closer particle-wall distances than the other numerical approaches such as the finite-element method. Using the BEM and integrating the Maxwell stress tensor, we simulate an electrokinetic, spherical particle moving within a bent cylindrical pore to investigate how the dielectrophoretic force affects the particle's trajectory. In the simulation, both the particle and the channel wall are non-conducting, and the electric double layers adjacent to the solid surfaces are assumed to be thin with respect to the particle radius and particle-wall gap. The results show that as the particle comes close to the wall, its finite size has an increasingly important effect on its own transient motion and the point-dipole approximation may lead to significant error.
Copyright © 2011 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.
We present an initial evaluation of a mechanically cooled, high-purity germanium double-sided strip detector as a potential gamma camera for small-animal SPECT. It is 90 mm in diameter and 10 mm thick with two sets of 16 orthogonal strips that have a 4.5 mm width with a 5 mm pitch. We found an energy resolution of 0.96% at 140 keV, an intrinsic efficiency of 43.3% at 122 keV and a FWHM spatial resolution of approximately 1.5 mm. We demonstrated depth-of-interaction estimation capability through comparison of pinhole acquisitions with a point source on and off axes. Finally, a flood-corrected flood image exhibited a strip-level uniformity of less than 1%. This high-purity germanium offers many desirable properties for small-animal SPECT.
Blood oxygenation level dependent (BOLD) functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) is commonly performed using 2D single-shot echo-planar imaging (EPI). However, single-shot EPI at 7 Tesla (T) often suffers from significant geometric distortions (due to low bandwidth (BW) in the phase-encode (PE) direction) and amplified physiological noise. Recent studies have suggested that 3D multi-shot sequences such as PRESTO may offer comparable BOLD contrast-to-noise ratio with increased volume coverage and decreased geometric distortions. Thus, a four-way group-level comparison was performed between 2D and 3D acquisition sequences at two in-plane resolutions. The quality of fMRI data was evaluated via metrics of prediction and reproducibility using NPAIRS (Non-parametric Prediction, Activation, Influence and Reproducibility re-Sampling). Group activation maps were optimized for each acquisition strategy by selecting the number of principal components that jointly maximized prediction and reproducibility, and showed good agreement in sensitivity and specificity for positive BOLD changes. High-resolution EPI exhibited the highest z-scores of the four acquisition sequences; however, it suffered from the lowest BW in the PE direction (resulting in the worst geometric distortions) and limited spatial coverage, and also caused some subject discomfort through peripheral nerve stimulation (PNS). In comparison, PRESTO also had high z-scores (higher than EPI for a matched in-plane resolution), the highest BW in the PE direction (producing images with superior geometric fidelity), the potential for whole-brain coverage, and no reported PNS. This study provides evidence to support the use of 3D multi-shot acquisition sequences in lieu of single-shot EPI for ultra high field BOLD fMRI at 7T.
Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
A new class of composite RF pulses that perform well in the presence of specific ranges of B0 and B1+ inhomogeneities has been designed for volume (non-selective) excitation in MRI. The pulses consist of numerous (approximately 100) short (approximately 10 micros) block-shaped sub-pulses each with different phases and amplitudes derived from numerical optimization. Optimized pulses are designed to be effective over a specific range of frequency offsets and transmit field variations and are thus implementable regardless of field strength, transmit coil configuration, or the subject-specific spatial distribution of the static and RF fields. In the context of 7 T human brain imaging, both simulations and phantom experiments indicate that optimized pulses result in similar on-resonance flip-angle uniformity as BIR-4 pulses but with the advantages of superior off-resonance stability and significantly reduced average power. The pulse design techniques presented here are thus well-suited for practical application in ultra-high field human MRI.
Copyright (c) 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.