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The signal in balanced steady-state free precession has a strong sensitivity to off-resonance, which is typically described in terms of a signal "profile" over a range of frequencies. This profile has a well-known form for homogeneous media with a single T(1), T(2), and resonance frequency, which is symmetric about the on-resonance frequency. However, a straightforward extension to this established signal model predicts that the profile may become asymmetric in the presence of inhomogeneous frequency content, as would be expected to happen in tissue due to microstructural boundaries, compartments, and chemical shift. The presence of asymmetries in the balanced steady-state free precession profile may therefore provide a marker of tissue integrity. This manuscript describes the theory behind balanced steady-state free precession asymmetries, a method for detecting these effects, and the first measurements of balanced steady-state free precession asymmetries in tissue. Asymmetries are found in gray matter, white matter, and muscle, with excellent reproducibility. A companion paper considers the large white matter asymmetries in more detail.

Original publication

DOI

10.1002/mrm.22212

Type

Journal article

Journal

Magn Reson Med

Publication Date

02/2010

Volume

63

Pages

385 - 395

Keywords

Algorithms, Brain, Computer Simulation, Humans, Image Enhancement, Image Interpretation, Computer-Assisted, Imaging, Three-Dimensional, Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Models, Biological, Phantoms, Imaging, Reproducibility of Results, Sensitivity and Specificity