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PLoS One. 2014 Mar 12;9(3):e91075. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0091075. eCollection 2014.

Resting-state fMRI using passband balanced steady-state free precession.

Author information

  • 1Laboratory of Biomedical Imaging and Signal Processing, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR, China; Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR, China.
  • 2Philips Healthcare, Hong Kong SAR, China.
  • 3Diagnostic Radiology, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR, China.
  • 4Laboratory of Biomedical Imaging and Signal Processing, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR, China; Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR, China; Department of Anatomy, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR, China; Department of Medicine, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR, China.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Resting-state functional MRI (rsfMRI) has been increasingly used for understanding brain functional architecture. To date, most rsfMRI studies have exploited blood oxygenation level-dependent (BOLD) contrast using gradient-echo (GE) echo planar imaging (EPI), which can suffer from image distortion and signal dropout due to magnetic susceptibility and inherent long echo time. In this study, the feasibility of passband balanced steady-state free precession (bSSFP) imaging for distortion-free and high-resolution rsfMRI was investigated.

METHODS:

rsfMRI was performed in humans at 3 T and in rats at 7 T using bSSFP with short repetition time (TR = 4/2.5 ms respectively) in comparison with conventional GE-EPI. Resting-state networks (RSNs) were detected using independent component analysis.

RESULTS AND SIGNIFICANCE:

RSNs derived from bSSFP images were shown to be spatially and spectrally comparable to those derived from GE-EPI images with considerable intra- and inter-subject reproducibility. High-resolution bSSFP images corresponded well to the anatomical images, with RSNs exquisitely co-localized to the gray matter. Furthermore, RSNs at areas of severe susceptibility such as human anterior prefrontal cortex and rat piriform cortex were proved accessible. These findings demonstrated for the first time that passband bSSFP approach can be a promising alternative to GE-EPI for rsfMRI. It offers distortion-free and high-resolution RSNs and is potentially suited for high field studies.

PMID:
24622278
[PubMed - in process]
PMCID:
PMC3951283
Free PMC Article

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