Test-retest reproducibility of cardiac magnetic resonance imaging in healthy mice at 7-Tesla: effect of anesthetic procedures

Sci Rep. 2017 Jul 27;7(1):6698. doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-07083-1.


Cardiac magnetic resonance (CMR) has emerged as a powerful tool for in vivo assessments of cardiac parameters in experimental animal models of cardiovascular diseases, but its reproducibility in this setting remains poorly explored. To address this issue, we investigated the test-retest reproducibility of preclinical cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (CMR) at 7 Tesla in healthy C57BL/6 mice, including an analysis of the impact of different anesthetic procedures (isoflurane or pentobarbital). We also analyzed the intra-study reproducibility and the intra- and inter-observer post-processing reproducibility of CMR images. Test-retest reproducibility was high for left ventricular parameters, especially with the isoflurane anesthetic procedure, whereas right ventricular parameters and deformation measurements were less reproducible, mainly due to physiological variability. Post-processing reproducibility of CMR images was high both within and between observers. These results highlight that anesthetic procedures might influence CMR test-retest reproducibility, an important ethical consideration for longitudinal studies in rodent models of cardiomyopathy to limit the number of animals used.

MeSH terms

  • Anesthetics / pharmacology*
  • Animals
  • Diastole / drug effects
  • Diastole / physiology
  • Heart / diagnostic imaging*
  • Heart Function Tests
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging*
  • Male
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Myocardium / cytology
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Systole / drug effects
  • Systole / physiology


  • Anesthetics