In vivo quantitative whole-brain T1 rho MRI of multiple sclerosis

Jay V. Gonyea, Richard Watts, Angela Applebee, Trevor Andrews, Scott Hipko, Joshua P. Nickerson, Lindsay Thornton, Christopher G. Filippi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Background To apply quantitative whole-brain T1-rho (T) and T2 imaging to the detection and quantification of brain changes resulting from multiple sclerosis (MS). Methods Twenty-three MS patients with clinically isolated syndrome (10) and relapsing remitting MS (13) phenotypes, compared with 24 age-matched healthy controls were imaged at 3 Tesla. An axial T-weighted three-dimensional turbo spin echo sequence with a variable flip angle and fluid suppression was used. Spin-lock times of 0, 20, 40, 60, 80, and 100 ms were used. Corresponding T2 maps were also acquired. Results Whole brain white matter (WM) T maps were elevated compared with controls (P = 0.002). WM lesion T and T2 values were highly correlated (r = 0.83), but T demonstrated 25% better contrast to noise ratio (P < 0.001). WM lesion T correlated with disease duration. Gray matter T was negatively correlated with the Expanded Disability Status Scale, r = -0.45, P = 0.03. Normal appearing gray matter and cortical gray matter lesions were negatively correlated on T, but not on T2 (rT1ρ = -0.63, pT1ρ = 0.03; rT2 = -0.17, pT2 = 0.6). Conclusion T MRI demonstrates enhanced lesion contrast compared with T2, and in some cases may provide complementary information. T may provide a useful measure of demyelinating processes in MS.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1623-1630
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Magnetic Resonance Imaging
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • T
  • T rho
  • multiple sclerosis
  • quantitative MRI
  • spin lock

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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