In vivo multiple-mouse imaging at 1.5 T
Magnetic Resonance Imaging
A multiple-mouse solenoidal MR coil was developed for in vivo imaging of up to 13 mice simultaneously to screen for tumors on a 1.5 T clinical scanner. For the coil to be effective as a screening tool, it should permit acquisition of MRIs in which orthotopic tumors with diameters >2 mm are detectable in a reasonable period of time (<1 hr magnet time) and their sizes accurately measured. Using a spin echo sequence, we demonstrated that this coil provides sufficient sensitivity for moderately high resolution images (156-176 microm in plane-resolution, 1.5 mm slice thickness). This spatial resolution permitted detection of primary brain tumors in transgenic/knockout mice and orthotopic xenografts. Brain tumor size as measured by MRI was correlated with size measured by histopathology (P < 0.001). Metastatic tumors in the mouse lung were also successfully imaged in a screening setting. The multiple mouse coil is simple in construction and may be implemented without any significant modification to the hardware or software on a clinical scanner.