Band inversion amplifies 31P–31P nuclear overhauser effects: Relaxation mechanism and dynamic behavior of ATP in the human brain by 31P MRS at 7 T

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Purpose: To develop an improved method to measure the 31P nuclear Overhauser effect (NOE) for evaluation of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) dynamics in terms of correlation time (τc), and contribution of dipole-dipole (DD) and chemical shift anisotropy (CSA) mechanisms to T1 relaxation of ATP in human brain. Methods: The NOE of ATP in human brain was evaluated by monitoring changes in magnetization in the β-ATP signal following a band inversion of all downfield 31P resonances. The magnetization changes observed were analyzed using the Bloch-McConnell-Solomon formulation to evaluate the relaxation and motion dynamic parameters that describe interactions of ATP with cellular solids in human brain tissue. Results: The maximal transient NOE, observed as a reduction in the β-ATP signal, was 24 ± 2% upon band inversion of γ- and α-ATP, which is 2–3-fold higher than achievable by frequency-selective inversion of either γ- or α-ATP. The rate of 31P–31P cross relaxation (0.21 ± 0.02 s−1) led to a τc value of (9.1 ± 0.8) × 10−8 s for ATP in human brain. The T1 relaxation of β-ATP is dominated by CSA over the DD mechanism (60%: 40%). Conclusions: The band inversion method proved effective in amplifying 31P NOE, and thus facilitating ATP τc and relaxation measurements. This technique renders ATP a potentially useful reporter molecule for cellular environments. Magn Reson Med 77:1409–1418, 2017.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1409-1418
Number of pages10
JournalMagnetic resonance in medicine
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1 2017


  • ATP
  • NOE
  • T1 relaxation
  • cross relaxation
  • dynamics
  • inversion transfer
  • magnetization transfer

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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