Slice-Selective DQF-MRI of Connective Tissues
The Invention Reduced signal loss and the achievement of optimal contrast for imaging tendons and ligaments are made possible through the innovation of Slice-Selective Double Quantum Filter MRI (DQF-MRI). This new DQF-MRI is performed on a time scale shorter than any previous imaging sequence, making it possible for doctors to follow healing processes and treatments. As opposed to the histological gold-standard methods, the DQF-MRI is non-destructive and can monitor the healing process of ruptured tendons in the acute and the chronic stages.
The Technological Innovation The slice-selective DQF-MRI produces a contrast that relies only on the water molecules that are closely associated with ordered structures. The innovation of the current version of the DQF-MRI is that the slice-selection is performed on a shorter time-scale than in previous versions. This shortening is achieved by postponing the application of the slice-refocusing gradient to the period after the last pulse just before the acquisition. The reduced time scale allows for smaller signal loss resulting from the short relaxation times (T2) of tendons and ligaments.
The DQF-MRI has an advantage over histological methods as it is not a result of averaging over many regenerating tendons, making it particularly useful for clinical staging.
Commercial Applications The Slice-Selective DQF-MRI is especially significant for connective tissue imaging and can be used as a non-invasive technique for evaluating the reconstruction and order of collagen fibers in regenerating tendons.
The Slice-Selective DQF-MRI can give information about the chronic phase of healing, providing an objective scale for judging rehabilitation protocols, something which is unavailable with present technology.
Implementation This MRI innovation is software plug-in for existing MRI hardware, and therefore does not require installation of any additional hardware or training of a technician.
§ L. Tsoref, U. Eliav, Y. Seo, H. Shinar & G. Navon “Slice-Selective Proton Double Quantum Filtered MRI of Joint Connective Tissues” Journal of Magnetic Resonance Imaging vol. 11, pp. 336-341 (2000)
§ K. Ikoma, Y. Kusaka, H. Takamiya, U. Eliav, G. Navon & Y. Seo “Evaluation of Collagen fiber maturation and ordering in regenerating tendons employing H-1 double quantum filtered NMR spectroscopy” Journal of Orthopaedic Research vol. 21 pp. 149-156 (2003)
Links http://www.tau.ac.il/chemistry/navon/ Patent Issued: US
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