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J Appl Physiol (1985). 2003 Apr;94(4):1641-9. Epub 2002 Nov 27.

Brain temperature measured by 1H-NMR in conjunction with a lanthanide complex.

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Departments of Pediatrics, Magnetic Resonance Research Center, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut 06510, USA.


In vivo data on temperature distributions in the intact brain are scarce, partly due to lack of noninvasive methods for the region of interest. NMR has been exploited for probing a variety of brain activities in vivo noninvasively within the region of interest. Here we report the use of a thulium-based thermometric sensor, infused through the blood, for monitoring absolute temperature in rat brain in vivo by (1)H-NMR and validated by direct temperature measurements with thermocouple wires. Because the (1)H chemical shifts also demonstrate pH sensitivity, detection of multiple resonances was used to measure both temperature and pH simultaneously with high sensitivity. Examination of blood plasma and cerebral spinal fluid samples removed from rats infused with the thermometric sensor suggests that the complex, despite its negative charge, crosses the blood-brain barrier to enter the extracellular milieu. In the future, the thulium-based thermometric sensor may be used for monitoring temperature (and pH) distributions throughout the entire brain, examining response to therapy and evaluating changes induced by alterations in neuronal activity.

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