In vivo 1H-spectroscopy of human intracranial tumors at 1.5 tesla. Preliminary experience at a clinical installation

Acta Radiol. 1991 Mar;32(2):95-9. doi: 10.1177/028418519103200201.


Magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) may contribute to the characterization of intracranial tumors in vivo. Volume selective water suppressed proton spectroscopy offers the possibility to study a number of metabolites in the brain including choline (CHO), creatinine/phosphocreatinine (CR/PCR), N-acetylaspartate (NAA), and lactate. Using the stimulated echo technique we have studied 17 patients with intracranial tumors. In all cases the tumors were classified based on histologic evaluation. The tumor spectra differed considerably from those obtained in healthy brain tissue. The results indicate a relative decrease in the NAA and CR/PCR content. In many cases a lactate peak could be seen especially in the tumors with malignant growth characteristics. Our preliminary results suggest that proton spectroscopy may contribute to the differentiation of brain tumors with respect to benign or malignant growth. However, further research is warranted before a definite conclusion can be drawn.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aspartic Acid / analogs & derivatives
  • Aspartic Acid / metabolism
  • Astrocytoma / diagnosis
  • Astrocytoma / metabolism
  • Brain Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Brain Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Brain Neoplasms / secondary
  • Choline / metabolism
  • Creatine / metabolism
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lactates / metabolism
  • Lactic Acid
  • Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy* / methods
  • Male
  • Meningeal Neoplasms / diagnosis
  • Meningeal Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Meningioma / diagnosis
  • Meningioma / metabolism
  • Middle Aged
  • Oligodendroglioma / diagnosis
  • Oligodendroglioma / metabolism
  • Phosphocreatine / metabolism


  • Lactates
  • Phosphocreatine
  • Aspartic Acid
  • Lactic Acid
  • N-acetylaspartate
  • Creatine
  • Choline