Contribution of macromolecules to brain 1H MR spectra: Experts' consensus recommendations

Cristina Cudalbu, Kevin L. Behar, Pallab K. Bhattacharyya, Wolfgang Bogner, Tamas Borbath, Robin A. de Graaf, Rolf Gruetter, Anke Henning, Christoph Juchem, Roland Kreis, Phil Lee, Hongxia Lei, Małgorzata Marjańska, Ralf Mekle, Saipavitra Murali-Manohar, Michal Považan, Veronika Rackayová, Dunja Simicic, Johannes Slotboom, Brian J. SoherZenon Starčuk, Jana Starčuková, Ivan Tkáč, Stephen Williams, Martin Wilson, Andrew Martin Wright, Lijing Xin, Vladimír Mlynárik

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

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Proton MR spectra of the brain, especially those measured at short and intermediate echo times, contain signals from mobile macromolecules (MM). A description of the main MM is provided in this consensus paper. These broad peaks of MM underlie the narrower peaks of metabolites and often complicate their quantification but they also may have potential importance as biomarkers in specific diseases. Thus, separation of broad MM signals from low molecular weight metabolites enables accurate determination of metabolite concentrations and is of primary interest in many studies. Other studies attempt to understand the origin of the MM spectrum, to decompose it into individual spectral regions or peaks and to use the components of the MM spectrum as markers of various physiological or pathological conditions in biomedical research or clinical practice. The aim of this consensus paper is to provide an overview and some recommendations on how to handle the MM signals in different types of studies together with a list of open issues in the field, which are all summarized at the end of the paper.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere4393
JournalNMR in biomedicine
Issue number5
Early online dateNov 25 2020
StatePublished - May 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.


  • brain macromolecules
  • fitting
  • metabolite quantification
  • mobile lipids
  • parameterization
  • proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy
  • quantification
  • spectral analysis

Center for Magnetic Resonance Research (CMRR) tags

  • SMCT


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