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Magn Reson Med. 2019 Feb;81(2):1424-1433. doi: 10.1002/mrm.27408. Epub 2018 Oct 10.

Combined imaging and shimming with the dynamic multi-coil technique.

Author information

1
Department of Radiology and Biomedical Imaging, Magnetic Resonance Research Center, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut.
2
RWTH Aachen University, Aachen, Germany.
3
Department of Biomedical Engineering and Radiology, Columbia University in the City of New York, New York, New York.
4
Department of Neurology, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

Spatial encoding and shimming in MRI have traditionally been performed using dedicated coils that generate orthogonal spherical harmonic fields. The recently introduced multi-coil hardware has proven that MRI-relevant magnetic fields can also be created by a generic set of localized coils producing non-orthogonal fields. As a step towards establishing a purely multi-coil-based MRI field generation system, the feasibility of performing conventional Cartesian k-space encoding and echo-planar imaging (EPI), as well as concurrent encoding and shimming is demonstrated in this study.

METHODS:

We report the use of Dynamic Multi-Coil Technique (DYNAMITE) for combined Cartesian encoding and shimming, and EPI using a 48-channel multi-coil system. Experiments were performed on phantom objects and biological specimens in a 9.4 T pre-clinical scanner. Cartesian Fourier-encoded MRI and EPI were implemented whereby the magnetic fields required for encoding of the three orthogonal spatial dimensions were entirely based on linear combinations of multi-coil fields. Furthermore, DYNAMITE imaging was augmented by concurrent DYNAMITE shimming with the same hardware.

RESULTS:

DYNAMITE-based MR and echo-planar images were indistinguishable from those acquired with the conventional linear imaging gradients provided by the scanner. In experiments with concurrent DYNAMITE shimming and imaging, shim challenges that would result in extreme spatial distortion and signal loss were corrected very effectively with more than 92% signal recovery in case of extreme Z2 shim challenge that resulted in complete signal dephasing in most slices.

CONCLUSIONS:

We demonstrate the first successful implementation of combined DYNAMITE imaging and shimming and show the feasibility of performing EPI with DYNAMITE hardware. Our results substantiate the potential of multi-coil hardware as a full-fledged imaging and shimming system, with additional potential benefits of reduced echo-time and risk of peripheral nerve stimulation while performing EPI.

KEYWORDS:

EPI; dynamic shimming; encoding; multi-coil; non-linear gradients

PMID:
30303553
DOI:
10.1002/mrm.27408

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