Detection of elevated glutathione in meningiomas by quantitative in vivo 1H MRS

Magn Reson Med. 2003 Apr;49(4):632-7. doi: 10.1002/mrm.10416.


Glutathione has major roles in removing free radicals and toxins from normal tissues, but its presence in tumor cells hinders the effectiveness of many anticancer therapies. Analysis of short echo time brain tumor (1)H spectra at 1.5 T using a linear combination of metabolite spectra (LCModel) suggested a significant contribution of glutathione to meningioma spectra. By in vivo MRS (TE = 30 ms, TR = 2020 ms), reduced glutathione was found to be significantly elevated in meningiomas (3.3 +/- 1.5 mM, Mann Whitney, P < 0.005) compared to normal white matter (1.2 +/- 0.15 mM) and low-grade gliomas (1.0 +/- 0.26 mM), in agreement with published histofluorescence studies of tumor biopsies. Glx concentrations were also found to be elevated in meningiomas compared to astrocytomas or normal white matter, indicative of metabolic differences. The ability to noninvasively quantify reduced glutathione in vivo may aid selection of treatment therapies and also provide an indication of tumor aggressiveness.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Astrocytoma / metabolism*
  • Brain Chemistry
  • Brain Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Glutathione / chemistry
  • Glutathione / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy / methods
  • Meningioma / metabolism*
  • Models, Biological
  • gamma-Aminobutyric Acid / metabolism


  • gamma-Aminobutyric Acid
  • Glutathione