The increasing prevalence of Alzheimer's disease (AD) has provided motivation for developing novel methods for assessing the disease and the effects of potential treatments. Magnetic resonance elastography (MRE) is an MRI-based method for quantitatively imaging the shear tissue stiffness in vivo. The objective of this research was to determine whether this new imaging biomarker has potential for characterizing neurodegenerative disease. Methods were developed and tested for applying MRE to evaluate the mouse brain, using a conventional large bore 3.0T MRI system. The technique was then applied to study APP-PS1 mice, a well-characterized model of AD. Five APP-PS1 mice and 8 age-matched wild-type mice were imaged immediately following sacrifice. Brain shear stiffness measurements in APP-PS1 mice averaged 22.5% lower than those for wild-type mice (P = .0031). The results indicate that mouse brain MRE is feasible at 3.0T, and brain shear stiffness has merit for further investigation as a potential new biomarker for Alzheimer's disease.
- Alzheimer's disease
- MR elastography
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biomedical Engineering
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging