Free-breathing simultaneous T1, T2, and T2∗ quantification in the myocardium

Ingo Hermann, Peter Kellman, Omer B. Demirel, Mehmet Akçakaya, Lothar R. Schad, Sebastian Weingärtner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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PURPOSE: To implement a free-breathing sequence for simultaneous quantification of T 1 , T 2 , and T 2 ∗ for comprehensive tissue characterization of the myocardium in a single scan using a multi-gradient-echo readout with saturation and T 2 preparation pulses.

METHODS: In the proposed Saturation And T 2 -prepared Relaxometry with Navigator-gating (SATURN) technique, a series of multi-gradient-echo (GRE) images with different magnetization preparations was acquired during free breathing. A total of 35 images were acquired in 26.5 ± 14.9 seconds using multiple saturation times and T 2 preparation durations and with imaging at 5 echo times. Bloch simulations and phantom experiments were used to validate a 5-parameter fit model for accurate relaxometry. Free-breathing simultaneous T 1 , T 2 , and T 2 ∗ measurements were performed in 10 healthy volunteers and 2 patients using SATURN at 3T and quantitatively compared to conventional single-parameter methods such as SASHA for T 1 , T 2 -prepared bSSFP, and multi-GRE for T 2 ∗ .

RESULTS: Simulations confirmed accurate fitting with the 5-parameter model. Phantom measurements showed good agreement with the reference methods in the relevant range for in vivo measurements. Compared to single-parameter methods comparable accuracy was achieved. SATURN produced in vivo parameter maps that were visually comparable to single-parameter methods. No significant difference between T 1 , T 2 , and T 2 ∗ times acquired with SATURN and single-parameter methods was shown in quantitative measurements (SATURN T 1 = 1573 ± 86 ms , T 2 = 33.2 ± 3.6 ms , T 2 ∗ = 25.3 ± 6.1 ms ; conventional methods: T 1 = 1544 ± 107 ms , T 2 = 33.2 ± 3.6 ms , T 2 ∗ = 23.8 ± 5.5 ms ; P > . 2 ) CONCLUSION: SATURN enables simultaneous quantification of T 1 , T 2 , and T 2 ∗ in the myocardium for comprehensive tissue characterization with co-registered maps, in a single scan with good agreement to single-parameter methods.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1226-1240
Number of pages15
JournalMagnetic resonance in medicine
Issue number3
Early online dateMar 29 2021
StatePublished - Sep 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors acknowledge grant support by the 4TU Federation, ZonMW OffRoad 04510011910073, a NWO Startup STU.019.024 and the NIH R01HL153146, R21EB028369, P41EB027061.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 The Authors. Magnetic Resonance in Medicine published by Wiley Periodicals LLC on behalf of International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine.


  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Myocardium
  • Phantoms, Imaging
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Respiration

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't


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