Utilizing magnetization transfer imaging to investigate tissue remodeling in a murine model of autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease

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Purpose: Noninvasive imaging techniques that quantify renal tissue composition are needed to more accurately ascertain prognosis and monitor disease progression in polycystic kidney disease (PKD). Given the success of magnetization transfer (MT) imaging to characterize various tissue remodeling pathologies, it was tested on a murine model of autosomal dominant PKD. Methods: C57Bl/6 Pkd1 R3277C mice at 9, 12, and 15 months were imaged with a 16.4T MR imaging system. Images were acquired without and with RF saturation in order to calculate MT ratio (MTR) maps. Following imaging, the mice were euthanized and kidney sections were analyzed for cystic and fibrotic indices, which were compared with statistical parameters of the MTR maps. Results: The MTR-derived mean, median, 25th percentile, skewness, and kurtosis were all closely related to indices of renal pathology, including kidney weight/body weight, cystic index, and percent of remaining parenchyma. The correlation between MTR and histology-derived cystic and fibrotic changes was R<sup>2</sup>=0.84 and R<sup>2</sup>=0.70, respectively. Conclusion: MT imaging provides a new, noninvasive means of measuring tissue remodeling PKD changes and may be better suited for characterizing renal impairment compared with conventional MR techniques.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalMagnetic Resonance in Medicine
StateAccepted/In press - 2015



  • Fibrosis
  • Gaussian mixture model
  • Histology
  • In vivo imaging
  • Quantitative MRI
  • Skewness

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging

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