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Magn Reson Med. 2018 Jan;79(1):276-285. doi: 10.1002/mrm.26673. Epub 2017 Mar 27.

B1 -sensitivity analysis of quantitative magnetization transfer imaging.

Author information

McConnell Brain Imaging Centre, Montreal Neurological Institute, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.
Département du Génie Biomédical, École Polytechnique de Montreal, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.
Montreal Heart Institute, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.
Hotchkiss Brain Institute and Department of Radiology, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada.



To evaluate the sensitivity of quantitative magnetization transfer (qMT) fitted parameters to B1 inaccuracies, focusing on the difference between two categories of T1 mapping techniques: B1 -independent and B1 -dependent.


The B1 -sensitivity of qMT was investigated and compared using two T1 measurement methods: inversion recovery (IR) (B1 -independent) and variable flip angle (VFA), B1 -dependent). The study was separated into four stages: 1) numerical simulations, 2) sensitivity analysis of the Z-spectra, 3) healthy subjects at 3T, and 4) comparison using three different B1 imaging techniques.


For typical B1 variations in the brain at 3T (±30%), the simulations resulted in errors of the pool-size ratio (F) ranging from -3% to 7% for VFA, and -40% to > 100% for IR, agreeing with the Z-spectra sensitivity analysis. In healthy subjects, pooled whole-brain Pearson correlation coefficients for F (comparing measured double angle and nominal flip angle B1 maps) were ρ = 0.97/0.81 for VFA/IR.


This work describes the B1 -sensitivity characteristics of qMT, demonstrating that it varies substantially on the B1 -dependency of the T1 mapping method. Particularly, the pool-size ratio is more robust against B1 inaccuracies if VFA T1 mapping is used, so much so that B1 mapping could be omitted without substantially biasing F. Magn Reson Med 79:276-285, 2018. © 2017 International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine.


B1 mapping; T1 mapping; quantitative magnetization transfer; sensitivity analysis

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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