Characterization of normal-appearing white matter in multiple sclerosis using quantitative susceptibility mapping in conjunction with diffusion tensor imaging

Fang F. Yu, Florence L. Chiang, Nicholas Stephens, Susie Y. Huang, Berkin Bilgic, Bundhit Tantiwongkosi, Rebecca Romero

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose: Quantitative susceptibility mapping (QSM) is influenced by iron as well as myelin, which makes interpretation of pathologic changes challenging. Concurrent acquisition of MR sequences that are sensitive to axonal/myelin integrity, such as diffusion tensor imaging (DTI), may provide context for interpreting quantitative susceptibility (QS) signal. The purpose of our study was to investigate alterations in normal-appearing white matter (NAWM) in multiple sclerosis (MS) using QSM in conjunction with DTI. Methods: Twenty relapsing–remitting MS patients and 20 age-matched healthy controls (HC) were recruited for this prospective study. QS, radial diffusivity (RD), fractional anisotropy (FA), and R2* maps within the whole brain as well as individual tracts were generated for comparison between NAWM and HC white matter (HCWM). Results: MS lesions demonstrated significant differences in QS, FA, RD, and R2* compared to HCWM (p < 0.03). These metrics did not show a significant difference between whole-brain NAWM and HCWM. Among NAWM tracts, the cingulate gyri demonstrated significantly decreased QS compared to HCWM (p = 0.004). The forceps major showed significant differences in FA and RD without corresponding changes in QS (p < 0.01). Conclusion: We found discordant changes in QSM and DTI metrics within the cingulate gyri and forceps major. This may potentially reflect the influence of paramagnetic substrates such as iron, which could be decreased along these NAWM tracts. Our results point to the potential role of QSM as a unique biomarker, although additional validation studies are needed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)71-79
Number of pages9
JournalNeuroradiology
Volume61
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 23 2019

Keywords

  • Diffusion tensor imaging
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Normal-appearing white matter
  • Quantitative susceptibility mapping

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

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