Comparison of functional MR-venography and EPI-BOLD fMRI at 1.5 T

Magn Reson Imaging. 1998 Oct;16(8):989-91. doi: 10.1016/s0730-725x(98)00085-x.


Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) of the brain using blood oxygenation level dependent (BOLD) contrast relies on the changes of paramagnetic deoxyhemoglobin concentration, which affects brain parenchyma and draining venous vessels. These changes in deoxyhemoglobin concentration in venous vessels can also be monitored using a high-resolution susceptibility-based MR-venography technique. Four volunteers participated in the study in which functional MR-venograms were compared with conventional echo-planar imaging (EPI)-BOLD-fMRI. In all cases, small venous vessels could be identified close to the areas of activation detected by conventional fMRI. In the venograms, task performance (finger tapping) resulted in a loss of venous vessel contrast compared to the resting state, which is consistent with a local decrease of deoxyhemoglobin concentration. MR-venography allows a direct visualization of the BOLD-effect at high spatial resolution. In combination with conventional fMRI, this technique may help to separate the contribution of brain parenchyma and venous vessels in fMRI studies.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Brain / blood supply*
  • Echo-Planar Imaging / methods*
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Angiography / methods*
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging / methods*
  • Veins / anatomy & histology