Quantitative evaluation of the lactate signal loss and its spatial dependence in press localized (1)H NMR spectroscopy

J Magn Reson. 2001 Oct;152(2):203-13. doi: 10.1006/jmre.2001.2420.


Localized (1)H NMR spectroscopy using the 90 degrees -t(1)-180 degrees -t(1)+t(2)-180 degrees -t(2)-Acq. PRESS sequence can lead to a signal loss for the lactate doublet compared with signals from uncoupled nuclei which is dependent on the choice of t(1) and t(2). The most striking signal loss of up to 78% of the total signal occurs with the symmetrical PRESS sequence (t(1)=t(2)) at an echo time of 2/J (approximately 290 ms). Calculations have shown that this signal loss is related to the pulse angle distributions produced by the two refocusing pulses which leads to the creation of single quantum polarization transfer (PT) as well as to not directly observable states (NDOS) of the lactate AX(3) spin system: zero- and multiple-quantum coherences, and longitudinal spin orders. In addition, the chemical shift dependent voxel displacement (VOD) leads to further signal loss. By calculating the density operator for various of the echo times TE=n/J, n=1, 2, 3,..., we calculated quantitatively the contributions of these effects to the signal loss as well as their spatial distribution. A maximum signal loss of 75% can be expected from theory for the symmetrical PRESS sequence and TE=2/J for Hamming filtered sinc pulses, whereby 47% are due to the creation of NDOS and up to 28% arise from PT. Taking also the VOD effect into account (2 mT/m slice selection gradients, 20-mm slices) leads to 54% signal loss from NDOS and up to 24% from PT, leading to a maximum signal loss of 78%. Using RE-BURP pulses with their more rectangular pulse angle distributions reduces the maximum signal loss to 44%. Experiments at 1.5 T using a lactate solution demonstrated a maximum lactate signal loss for sinc pulses of 82% (52% NDOS, 30% PT) at TE=290 ms using the symmetrical PRESS sequence. The great signal loss and its spatial distribution is of importance for investigations using a symmetrical PRESS sequence at TE=2/J.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acetic Acid
  • Lactates / analysis*
  • Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy / methods*


  • Lactates
  • Acetic Acid