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Placenta. 2019 Feb;77:39-45. doi: 10.1016/j.placenta.2019.01.019. Epub 2019 Feb 5.

Non-invasive assessment of placental perfusion in vivo using arterial spin labeling (ASL) MRI: A preclinical study in rats.

Author information

1
INSERM, U970, Sorbonne Paris Cite, Paris Cardiovascular Research Center - PARCC, Paris, France; Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris, Hôpital Necker-Enfants Malades, Paris, France; EA 7328 FETUS, Université Paris Descartes, France; Lumiere Project, France. Electronic address: benjamin.deloison@aphp.fr.
2
INSERM, U970, Sorbonne Paris Cite, Paris Cardiovascular Research Center - PARCC, Paris, France; Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris, Hôpital Necker-Enfants Malades, Paris, France; EA 7328 FETUS, Université Paris Descartes, France; Lumiere Project, France.
3
INSERM, U970, Sorbonne Paris Cite, Paris Cardiovascular Research Center - PARCC, Paris, France; Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Poissy-Saint Germain Hospital, Versailles-Saint Quentin University, France.
4
INSERM, U970, Sorbonne Paris Cite, Paris Cardiovascular Research Center - PARCC, Paris, France; Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris, Hôpital Robert Debré, Paris, France.
5
INSERM, U970, Sorbonne Paris Cite, Paris Cardiovascular Research Center - PARCC, Paris, France.
6
INSERM, U970, Sorbonne Paris Cite, Paris Cardiovascular Research Center - PARCC, Paris, France; Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris, Hôpital Européen Georges Pompidou, Paris, France.
7
INSERM, U970, Sorbonne Paris Cite, Paris Cardiovascular Research Center - PARCC, Paris, France; EA 7328 FETUS, Université Paris Descartes, France; Lumiere Project, France; Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris, Hôpital Européen Georges Pompidou, Paris, France; Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris, Hôpital Louis Mourier, Paris, France.

Abstract

INTRODUCTION:

Non-invasive assessment of placental perfusion is of great interest to characterize placental function in clinical practice. This article proposes a strictly non-invasive MRI technique using ASL to quantify placental blood flow in vivo. The aim of this study was to develop a fMRI tool to quantify placental blood flow (PBF) in rat, by using arterial spin labeling (ASL) MRI at 4.7 T.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

MRI was performed with a dedicated magnet for small animals, in pregnant rats on day 20 of the 22-day gestation period. A Look-Locker flow-sensitive alternating inversion recovery gradient echo sequence was developed as ASL technique (TE: 1.55 ms; TR: 3.5 ms, TI: 56 ms, deltaTI: 56 ms, FA: 20°, Matrix: 128 × 128, 8 segments, 4 Nex). Labeling was performed with global and slice-selective inversions, and T1 map was obtained for each mode of inversion. PBF was then derived from a compartmental model of the variation of T1 between global and slice-selective inversions.

RESULTS:

The full protocol was completed and ASL image post-processing was successful in 18 rats. Forty-seven placentas were analyzed, with a mean PBF of 147 ± 70 ml/min/100 g of placenta, consistent with published values of placental perfusion using invasive techniques.

CONCLUSION:

ASL MRI is feasible for the quantification of PBF in rats at 4.7 T. This technique, which requires no administration of contrast media, could have implications for non-invasive longitudinal and in vivo animal studies and may be useful for the management of human pregnancies.

KEYWORDS:

Arterial spin labeling; Functional MRI; Microcirculation; Perfusion; Placenta

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