Rapid whole brain myelin water content mapping without an external water standard at 1.5 T
Image Interpretation, Computer-Assisted
Image Processing, Computer-Assisted
Magnetic Resonance Imaging
The objective of this study is to develop rapid whole brain mapping of myelin water content (MWC) at 1.5T. The Fast Acquisition with Spiral Trajectory and T2prep (FAST-T2) pulse sequence originally developed for myelin water fraction (MWF) mapping was modified to obtain fast mapping of T1 and receiver coil sensitivity needed for MWC computation. The accuracy of the proposed T1 mapping was evaluated by comparing with the standard IR-FSE method. Numerical simulations were performed to assess the accuracy and reliability of the proposed MWC mapping. We also compared MWC values obtained with either cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) or an external water tube attached to the subject's head as the water reference. Our results from healthy volunteers show that whole brain MWC mapping is feasible in 7min and provides accurate brain T1 values. Regional brain WC and MWC measurements obtained with the internal CSF-based water standard showed excellent correlation (R>0.99) and negligible bias within narrow limits of agreement compared to those obtained with an external water standard.