The magnetization transfer effect in brain studies by 1.5 T magnetic resonance system. When the radiographer should apply it?

M. Margarida Ribeiro, Sara Farinha, Joana Costa, J. Cruz Mauricio, J. Goyri O' Neill

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: The Magnetization Transfer (MT) obtained by applying a pre-saturation pulse is, in Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), a technique that allows for additional enhancement of lesions on conventional T1 images after contrast administration. This study aims to assess the effectiveness of the technique measuring how MT could improve image quality and diagnostic values through the enhancement of lesions. Methods: Thirteen T1-weighted spin-echo (SE) sequences, obtained by the 1.5 T system after contrast media injection, were analyzed with and without MT. The contrast-to-noise ratio (CNR), as well as the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) variables were compared in all sequences, according to the reference structures: lateral ventricles, white matter, gray matter, caudate nucleus and internal capsule. The MT ratio average was calculated using the ANOVA scale in order to assess the CNR and the magnetization transfer effect (MTE) for the different lesions and for both sequences (with and without MT). For the assessment of the flow artifact, clinical experts applied a Likert scale with 5 points. Results: For CNR values, the differences between conventional and MT-pulsed images were significant (Student t testp < 0,05), remaining significant for SNR in all structures except for the lateral ventricles. For the flow artifacts the differences found by the coefficient Kappa agreement were not significant as the differences found for the CNR and the MTE between the two sequences (p > 0,05). Conclusion: In identical conditions of acquisition, the MT does not produce significant differences in the enhancement of lesions, however, it allows a greater capacity to detect the multiple sclerosis plaques, comparing structures around basal nucleus versus gray and white matter.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)96-101
Number of pages6
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2011


  • Image enhancement
  • Magnetization Transfer effect
  • Pre-saturation pulse


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