Chemical exchange saturation transfer (CEST) and magnetization transfer techniques provide unique and potentially quantitative contrast mechanisms in multiple MRI applications. However, the in vivo implementation of these techniques has been limited by the relatively slow MRI acquisition techniques, especially on high-field MRI scanners. A new, rapid CEST-fast imaging with steady-state free precession technique was developed to provide sensitive CEST contrast in ∼20 sec. In this study at 7 T with in vitro bovine glycogen samples and initial in vivo results in a rat liver, the CEST-fast imaging with steady-state free precession technique was shown to provide equivalent CEST sensitivity in comparison to a conventional CEST-spin echo acquisition with a 50-fold reduction in acquisition time. The sensitivity of the CEST-fast imaging with steady-state free precession technique was also shown to be dependent on k-space encoding with centric k-space encoding providing a 30-40% increase in CEST sensitivity relative to linear encoding for 256 or more k-space lines. Overall, the CEST-fast imaging with steady-state free precession acquisition technique provides a rapid and sensitive imaging platform with the potential to provide quantitative CEST and magnetization transfer imaging data.
- chemical exchange saturation transfer
- fast imaging
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging