Purpose: To introduce phase-based conductivity mapping from a configuration space analysis.
Methods: The frequency response function of balanced SSFP (bSSFP) is used to perform a configuration space analysis. It is shown that the transceive phase for conductivity mapping can be directly obtained by a simple fast Fourier transform of a series of phase-cycled bSSFP scans. For validation, transceive phase and off-resonance mapping with fast Fourier transform is compared with phase estimation using a recently proposed method, termed PLANET. Experiments were performed in phantoms and for in vivo brain imaging at 3 T using a quadrature head coil.
Results: For fast Fourier transform, aliasing can lead to systematic phase errors. This bias, however, decreases rapidly with increasing sampling points. Interestingly, Monte Carlo simulations revealed a lower uncertainty for the transceive phase and the off-resonance using fast Fourier transform as compared with PLANET. Both methods, however, essentially retrieve the same phase information from a set of phase-cycled bSSFP scans. As a result, configuration-based conductivity mapping was successfully performed using eight phase-cycled bSSFP scans in the phantoms and for brain tissues. Overall, the retrieved values were in good agreement with expectations. Conductivity estimation and mapping of the field inhomogeneities can therefore be performed in conjunction with the estimation of other quantitative parameters, such as relaxation, using configuration theory.
Conclusions: Phase-based conductivity mapping can be estimated directly from a simple Fourier analysis, such as in conjunction with relaxometry, using a series of phase-cycled bSSFP scans.
Keywords: Fourier transform; conductivity; configuration space; electric properties; phase-cycled bSSFP; transceive phase.
© 2020 International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine.