Detection of [1,6-13C2]-glucose metabolism in rat brain by in vivo 1H-[13C]-NMR spectroscopy

Magn Reson Med. 2003 Jan;49(1):37-46. doi: 10.1002/mrm.10348.


Localized, water-suppressed (1)H-[(13)C]-NMR spectroscopy was used to detect (13)C-label accumulation in cerebral metabolites following the intravenous infusion of [1,6-(13)C(2)]-glucose (Glc). The (1)H-[(13)C]-NMR method, based on adiabatic RF pulses, 3D image-selected in vivo spectroscopy (ISIS) localization, and optimal shimming, yielded high-quality (1)H-[(13)C]-NMR spectra with optimal NMR sensitivity. As a result, the (13)C labeling of [4-(13)C]-glutamate (Glu) and [4-(13)C]-glutamine (Gln) could be detected from relatively small volumes (100 microL) with a high temporal resolution. The formation of [n-(13)C]-Glu, [n-(13)C]-Gln (n = 2 or 3), [2-(13)C]-aspartate (Asp), [3-(13)C]-Asp, [3-(13)C]-alanine (Ala), and [3-(13)C]-lactate (Lac) was also observed to be reproducible. The (13)C-label incorporation curves of [4-(13)C]-Glu and [4-(13)C]-Gln provided direct information on metabolic pathways. Using a two-compartment metabolic model, the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle flux was determined as 0.52 +/- 0.04 micromol/min/g, while the glutamatergic neurotransmitter flux equaled 0.25 +/- 0.05 micromol/min/g, in good correspondence with previously determined values.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brain / metabolism*
  • Carbon Isotopes
  • Citric Acid Cycle
  • Glucose / metabolism*
  • Glutamic Acid / metabolism
  • Glutamine / metabolism
  • Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy* / methods
  • Male
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley


  • Carbon Isotopes
  • Glutamine
  • Glutamic Acid
  • Glucose