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Magn Reson Imaging. 2010 Jan;28(1):1-7. doi: 10.1016/j.mri.2009.06.006. Epub 2009 Aug 19.

Absolute quantification of cerebral blood flow: correlation between dynamic susceptibility contrast MRI and model-free arterial spin labeling.

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  • 1Department of Medical Radiation Physics, Lund University, Lund, Sweden.



To compare absolute cerebral blood flow (CBF) estimates obtained by model-free arterial spin labeling (ASL) and dynamic susceptibility contrast MRI (DSC-MRI), corrected for partial volume effects (PVEs).


CBF was measured using DSC-MRI and model-free ASL (quantitative signal targeting with alternating radiofrequency labeling of arterial regions) at 3 T in 15 subjects with brain tumor, and the two modalities were compared with regard to CBF estimates in normal gray matter (GM) and DSC-to-ASL CBF ratios in selected tumor regions. The DSC-MRI CBF maps were calculated using a global arterial input function (AIF) from the sylvian-fissure region, but, in order to minimize PVEs, the AIF time integral was rescaled by a venous output function time integral obtained from the sagittal sinus.


In GM, the average DSC-MRI CBF estimate was 150+/-45 ml/(min 100 g) (mean+/-SD) while the corresponding ASL CBF was 44+/-10 ml/(min 100 g). The linear correlation between GM CBF estimates obtained by DSC-MRI and ASL was r=.89, and observed DSC-to-ASL CBF ratios differed by less than 3% between GM and tumor regions.


A satisfactory positive linear correlation between the CBF estimates obtained by model-free ASL and DSC-MRI was observed, and DSC-to-ASL CBF ratios showed no obvious tissue dependence.

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