Toward In-vivo Histology using Quantitative Magnetic Resonance Imaging
Lecture by Dr. Robert Dougherty.
Dr. Robert Dougherty is the Research Director at the Stanford Center for Cognitive and Neurobiological Imaging (CNI). His work focuses on developing neuroimaging measurement and analysis methods to study the relationships between brain structure, function, and behavior.
Magnetic resonance imaging can be used to produce many different kinds of tissue contrast due to its sensitivity to structures at the molecular and cellular scales. Quantitative MRI (qMRI) attempts to quantify these contrast mechanisms, and, when combined with appropriate models, can be used to infer microscopic tissue properties. I will describe work on several qMRI methods, including diffusion MR, quantitative magnetization transfer, and T1 relaxometry, as well as efforts to combine and model these measurements to better characterize histological properties of brain tissue. I will also describe our recent efforts reduce the often lengthy scan times for qMRI measures and thus make them more clinically feasible. For example, we are using simultaneous multi-slice (SMS) EPI methods to decrease acquisition time by a factor of 3 in both diffusion imaging and T1 relaxometry. Finally, I will discuss some of the current and future applications of these new methods.