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Eur J Radiol. 2013 May;82(5):752-9. doi: 10.1016/j.ejrad.2011.08.002. Epub 2011 Sep 14.

Design, evaluation and application of an eight channel transmit/receive coil array for cardiac MRI at 7.0 T.

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Berlin Ultrahigh Field Facility, Max-Delbrueck-Center for Molecular Medicine, Robert-Roessle-Strasse 10, 13125 Berlin, Germany.


The objective of this work is to design, examine and apply an eight channel transmit/receive coil array tailored for cardiac magnetic resonance imaging at 7.0 T that provides image quality suitable for clinical use, patient comfort, and ease of use. The cardiac coil array was designed to consist of a planar posterior section and a modestly curved anterior section. For radio frequency (RF) safety validation, numerical computations of the electromagnetic field (EMF) and the specific absorption rate (SAR) distribution were conducted. In vivo cardiac imaging was performed using a 2D CINE FLASH technique. For signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) assessment reconstructed images were scaled in SNR units. The parallel imaging capabilities of the coil were examined using GRAPPA and SENSE reconstruction with reduction factors of up to R=4. The assessment of the RF characteristics yielded a maximum noise correlation of 0.33. The baseline SNR advantage at 7.0 T was put to use to acquire 2D CINE images of the heart with a spatial resolution of 1 mm × 1 mm × 4 mm. The coil array supports 1D acceleration factors of up to R=3 without impairing image quality significantly. For un-accelerated 2D CINE FLASH acquisitions the results revealed an SNR of approximately 140 for the left ventricular blood pool. Blood/myocardium contrast was found to be approximately 90 for un-accelerated 2D CINE FLASH acquisitions. The proposed 8 channel cardiac transceiver surface coil has the capability to acquire high contrast, high spatial and temporal resolution in vivo images of the heart at 7.0 T.

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