Quantitative characterization of tissue microstructure with temporal diffusion spectroscopy

J Magn Reson. 2009 Oct;200(2):189-97. doi: 10.1016/j.jmr.2009.06.022. Epub 2009 Jul 3.


The signals recorded by diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance imaging (DWI) are dependent on the micro-structural properties of biological tissues, so it is possible to obtain quantitative structural information non-invasively from such measurements. Oscillating gradient spin echo (OGSE) methods have the ability to probe the behavior of water diffusion over different time scales and the potential to detect variations in intracellular structure. To assist in the interpretation of OGSE data, analytical expressions have been derived for diffusion-weighted signals with OGSE methods for restricted diffusion in some typical structures, including parallel planes, cylinders and spheres, using the theory of temporal diffusion spectroscopy. These analytical predictions have been confirmed with computer simulations. These expressions suggest how OGSE signals from biological tissues should be analyzed to characterize tissue microstructure, including how to estimate cell nuclear sizes. This approach provides a model to interpret diffusion data obtained from OGSE measurements that can be used for applications such as monitoring tumor response to treatment in vivo.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Algorithms
  • Animals
  • Body Water / chemistry*
  • Body Water / cytology*
  • Computer Simulation
  • Diffusion
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy / methods*
  • Models, Neurological*
  • Nerve Fibers, Myelinated / chemistry*
  • Nerve Fibers, Myelinated / ultrastructure*