Purpose: To study the feasibility of using the MRI technique of segmented true-fast imaging with steady-state precession arterial spin-labeling (True-FISP ASL) for the noninvasive measurement and quantification of local perfusion in cerebral deep gray matter at 3T.
Materials and methods: A flow-sensitive alternating inversion-recovery (FAIR) ASL perfusion preparation was used in which the echo-planar imaging (EPI) readout was replaced with a segmented True-FISP data acquisition strategy. The absolute perfusion for six selected regions of deep gray matter (left and right thalamus, putamen, and caudate) were calculated in 11 healthy human subjects (six male, five female; mean age = 35.5 years +/- 9.9).
Results: Preliminary measurements of the average absolute perfusion values at the six selected regions of deep gray matter are in agreement with published values for mean absolute cerebral blood flow (CBF) baselines acquired from healthy volunteers using positron emission tomography (PET).
Conclusion: Segmented True-FISP ASL is a practical and quantitative technique suitable to measure local tissue perfusion in cerebral deep gray matter at a high spatial resolution without the susceptibility artifacts commonly associated with EPI-based methods of ASL.