Theoretical analysis of gadopentetate dimeglumine enhancement in T1-weighted imaging of the brain: comparison of two-dimensional spin-echo and three-dimensional gradient-echo sequences

J Magn Reson Imaging. 1993 Sep-Oct;3(5):761-9. doi: 10.1002/jmri.1880030512.


By using a theoretical model, the signal difference-to-noise ratios between simulated lesions and normal white matter and gray matter were calculated as a function of lesion concentration of gadopentetate dimeglumine (GD) for two-dimensional (2D) T1-weighted spin-echo (SE), three-dimensional (3D) steady-state spoiled gradient-echo (GRE) (FLASH [fast low-angle shot]), and 3D magnetization-prepared rapid gradient echo (MP-RAGE) pulse sequences. The 3D GRE sequences provided greater contrast enhancement at relatively high [GD], and the 2D SE sequence demonstrated greater enhancement and a higher rate of enhancement at low [GD]. The results predict that at low [GD], certain lesions could probably be detected with the 2D SE sequence but possibly not with one or both of the 3D GRE sequences. At high [GD], certain lesions could probably be detected with one or both of the 3D GRE sequences but possibly not with the 2D SE sequence. This provides a potential explanation for the clinical observation that certain contrast agent-enhanced lesions appear less conspicuous on 3D GRE images than on 2D SE images and vice versa. Modified parameter values were derived for the 3D FLASH and 3D MP-RAGE sequences that are predicted to produce contrast enhancement behavior equivalent or superior to that of a conventional 2D SE sequence.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Brain / pathology*
  • Contrast Media*
  • Drug Combinations
  • Gadolinium
  • Gadolinium DTPA
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging / methods*
  • Meglumine*
  • Models, Theoretical
  • Organometallic Compounds*
  • Pentetic Acid / analogs & derivatives*


  • Contrast Media
  • Drug Combinations
  • Organometallic Compounds
  • Meglumine
  • Pentetic Acid
  • Gadolinium
  • Gadolinium DTPA