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Magn Reson Med. 2010 Jul;64(1):1-8. doi: 10.1002/mrm.22471.

Four-dimensional spectral-spatial RF pulses for simultaneous correction of B1+ inhomogeneity and susceptibility artifacts in T2*-weighted MRI.

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  • 1Department of Medicine, John A. Burns School of Medicine, Honolulu, Hawaii 96813-2427, USA.


Susceptibility artifacts and excitation radiofrequency field B(1)+ inhomogeneity are major limitations in high-field MRI. Parallel transmission methods are promising for reducing artifacts in high-field applications. In particular, three-dimensional RF pulses have been shown to be useful for reducing B(1)+ inhomogeneity using multiple transmitters due to their ability to spatially shape the slice profile. Recently, two-dimensional spectral-spatial pulses have been demonstrated to be effective for reducing the signal loss susceptibility artifact by incorporating a frequency-dependent through-plane phase correction. We present the use of four-dimensional spectral-spatial RF pulses for simultaneous B(1)+ and through-plane signal loss susceptibility artifact compensation. The method is demonstrated with simulations and in T(2)*-weighted human brain images at 3 T, using a four-channel parallel transmission system. Parallel transmission was used to reduce the in-plane excitation resolution to improve the slice-selection resolution between two different pulse designs. Both pulses were observed to improve B(1)+ homogeneity and reduce the signal loss artifact in multiple slice locations and several human volunteers.

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