The magnetisation transfer (MT) ratio of eight multiple sclerosis lesions has been studied serially. Initially, when the lesions showed gadolinium enhancement, there was a marked reduction in their MT ratio compared with normal white matter. Follow-up a mean of 11 months later (range 3-23 months), when the lesions no longer enhanced, revealed a consistent and usually marked recovery of the MT ratios towards normal. The MT ratio is thought to reflect the structural integrity of tissues with an important contribution from myelin and axons. MT imaging is a promising tool for elucidating pathophysiology and monitoring treatment in multiple sclerosis.