Event Abstract

High resolution diffusion tensor imaging in a clinically feasible scan time

  • 1 University of Antwerp, iMinds-Vision Lab,Physics, Belgium
  • 2 NYU School of Medicine, Center for Advanced Imaging Innovation and Research (CAI2R), United States
  • 3 NYU School of Medicine, Center for Biomedical Imaging, Radiology, United States
  • 4 Delft University of Technology, Delft Center for Systems and Control, Netherlands
  • 5 Delft University of Technology, Imaging Science and Technology, Netherlands
  • 6 Erasmus Medical Center Rotterdam, Biomedical Imaging Group Rotterdam, Medical Informatics and Radiology, Netherlands

Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) is a noninvasive MRI modality that allows in vivo investigation of tissue microstructure. Achieving a high spatial resolution with DTI is challenging due to the inherent trade-off between resolution, acquisition time and signal-to-noise ratio (SNR). We propose to improve this trade-off by combining super-resolution DTI (SR-DTI) [1] and simultaneous multi-slice (SMS) acquisition [2]. With SMS-SR-DTI, high resolution DTI parameters can be recovered from thick slice images which have a short scan time. The isotropic resolution of the DTI parameters is comparable to the resolution achieved by the Human Connectome Project scanner, with a custom gradient set [3]. Four 1.25x1.25x2.5 mm3 diffusion-weighted (DW) datasets were acquired with echo-planar imaging and an SMS factor of 3 [2] on a 3T clinical scanner with a stock gradient set. Each data set was acquired with a different slice orientation, rotated around the phase encoding axis in incremental steps of 45°. Each data set consisted of 12 DW images (b=1000 s/mm2) and 2 non-DW image (b=0 s/mm2), acquired with reversed phase encoding. Each of the 48 DW images was acquired with a different diffusion gradient direction. The total scan time was 7min24. From the acquired images, high resolution DTI parameters were estimated on a grid with voxel size 1.25x1.25x1.25 mm3 using SR-DTI [1]. The results (figure 1) show that the resolution is improved by the SR-DTI method and that the estimation benefits from the high SNR of the low resolution images. By using SMS-SR-DTI, high spatial resolution can be achieved in a clinical setting. This opens up exciting possibilities for diffusion MRI research.

Figure 1


This work was finnancially supported by the Fund for Scientific Research-Flanders (FWO) and the
Interuniversity Attraction Poles Program (P7/11) initiated by the Belgian Science Policy Office.


[1] Van Steenkiste et al. “Super-resolution reconstruction of diffusion parameters from diffusion-weighted images with different slice orientations.” Magn Reson Med. doi: 10.1002/mrm.25597
[2] Setsompop, et al. "Improving diffusion MRI using simultaneous multi-slice echo planar imaging." Neuroimage 63.1 (2012): 569-580.
[3] Ugurbil et al. “Pushing spatial and temporal resolution for functional and diffusion MRI in the Human Connectome Project”, NeuroImage 80 (2013) 80-104

Keywords: simultaneous multi-slice, Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI), Super-resolution reconstruction, signal-to-noise ratio, MRI

Conference: Second Belgian Neuroinformatics Congress, Leuven, Belgium, 4 Dec - 4 Dec, 2015.

Presentation Type: Poster Presentation

Topic: Methods and Modeling

Citation: Van Steenkiste G, Jeurissen B, Baete SH, Den Dekker AJ, Poot DH, Boada F and Sijbers J (2015). High resolution diffusion tensor imaging in a clinically feasible scan time. Front. Neuroinform. Conference Abstract: Second Belgian Neuroinformatics Congress. doi: 10.3389/conf.fninf.2015.19.00016

Received: 13 Nov 2015; Published Online: 17 Nov 2015.

* Correspondence: Miss. Gwendolyn Van Steenkiste, University of Antwerp, iMinds-Vision Lab,Physics, Antwerp, Belgium, gwendolyn.vansteenkiste@uantwerpen.be

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