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Magn Reson Med. 2009 Mar;61(3):548-59. doi: 10.1002/mrm.21875.

Mapping of brain metabolite distributions by volumetric proton MR spectroscopic imaging (MRSI).

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Department of Radiology, Miller School of Medicine, University of Miami, Miami, Florida 33136, USA.


Distributions of proton MR-detected metabolites have been mapped throughout the brain in a group of normal subjects using a volumetric MR spectroscopic imaging (MRSI) acquisition with an interleaved water reference. Data were processed with intensity and spatial normalization to enable voxel-based analysis methods to be applied across a group of subjects. Results demonstrate significant regional, tissue, and gender-dependent variations of brain metabolite concentrations, and variations of these distributions with normal aging. The greatest alteration of metabolites with age was observed for white-matter choline and creatine. An example of the utility of the normative metabolic reference information is then demonstrated for analysis of data acquired from a subject who suffered a traumatic brain injury. This study demonstrates the ability to obtain proton spectra from a wide region of the brain and to apply fully automated processing methods. The resultant data provide a normative reference for subsequent utilization for studies of brain injury and disease.

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