White-matter-nulled MPRAGE at 7T reveals thalamic lesions and atrophy of specific thalamic nuclei in multiple sclerosis
Mult Scler. 2019-02-07; : 135245851982829
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Planche V(1), Su JH(2), Mournet S(3), Saranathan M(4), Dousset V(5), Han M(6), Rutt BK(7), Tourdias T(5).
(1)Institut des Maladies Neurodégénératives, CNRS UMR 5293, Bordeaux, France; University of Bordeaux, Bordeaux, France; CHU de Bordeaux, Bordeaux, France.
(2)Department of Electrical Engineering, Stanford University, Stanford, CA, USA.
(3)CHU de Bordeaux, Bordeaux, France.
(4)Department of Medical Imaging, The University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ, USA.
(5)University of Bordeaux, Bordeaux, France; CHU de Bordeaux, Bordeaux, France; INSERM U1215, Neurocentre Magendie, Bordeaux, France.
(6)Department of Neurology, School of Medicine, Stanford University, Palo Alto, CA, USA.
(7)Department of Radiology, Stanford University, Stanford, CA, USA.
BACKGROUND:: Investigating the degeneration of specific thalamic nuclei in multiple sclerosis (MS) remains challenging.
METHODS:: White-matter-nulled (WMn) MPRAGE, MP-FLAIR, and standard T1-weighted magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) were performed on MS patients ( n = 15) and matched controls ( n = 12). Thalamic lesions were counted in individual sequences and lesion contrast-to-noise ratio (CNR) was measured. Volumes of 12 thalamic nuclei were measured using an automatic segmentation pipeline specifically developed for WMn-MPRAGE.
RESULTS:: WMn-MPRAGE showed more thalamic MS lesions ( n = 35 in 9 out of 15 patients) than MP-FLAIR ( n = 25) and standard T1 ( n = 23), which was associated with significant improvement of CNR ( p < 0.0001). MS patients had whole thalamus atrophy ( p = 0.003) with lower volumes found for the anteroventral ( p < 0.001), the pulvinar ( p < 0.0001), and the habenular ( p = 0.004) nuclei.
CONCLUSION:: WMn-MPRAGE and automatic thalamic segmentation can highlight thalamic MS lesions and measure patterns of focal thalamic atrophy.