Blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) MRI of diabetic nephropathy: preliminary experience

J Magn Reson Imaging. 2011 Mar;33(3):655-60. doi: 10.1002/jmri.22501.


Purpose: To evaluate the blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) findings in kidneys of patients with diabetic nephropathy.

Materials and methods: BOLD MRI of the kidneys (1.5 T, multigradient-recalled-echo sequence with 12 echoes) was performed in 20 patients with diabetic nephropathy (moderate to severe chronic kidney disease: n = 14; mild chronic kidney disease: n = 6), and seven healthy volunteers. The medullary and cortical R2* values were compared between patients with diabetic nephropathy and healthy volunteers using Student's t-tests.

Results: The mean medullary R2* values were lower in patients with diabetic nephropathy compared to healthy volunteers (13.8 ± 2.4 sec(-1) vs. 19.3 ± 1.2 sec(-1), P = 0.0002). The cortical R2* values were not significantly different between the two groups (11.1 ± 0.9 sec(-1) vs. 11.5 ± 0.7 sec(-1), P = 0.7). A multiple logistic regression model using patient age, gender, and degree of chronic kidney disease (none, mild, or moderate to severe) as variables showed that the degree of kidney disease was independently associated with a decrease in medullary R2* values (P = 0.005).

Conclusion: The medullary R2* values were lower in patients with diabetic nephropathy compared to healthy volunteers.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Diabetic Nephropathies / diagnosis*
  • Diabetic Nephropathies / pathology*
  • Diagnostic Imaging / methods
  • Female
  • Glomerular Filtration Rate
  • Humans
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted
  • Kidney / pathology*
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / diagnosis
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / pathology
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging / methods*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Oxygen / blood*
  • Oxygen / metabolism
  • Regression Analysis


  • Oxygen