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Quantitative Susceptibility Mapping of the Thalamus: Relationships with Thalamic Volume, Total Gray Matter Volume, and T2 Lesion Burden.

TitleQuantitative Susceptibility Mapping of the Thalamus: Relationships with Thalamic Volume, Total Gray Matter Volume, and T2 Lesion Burden.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2018
AuthorsChiang GC, Hu J, Morris E, Wang Y, Gauthier SA
JournalAJNR Am J Neuroradiol
Date Published2018 Mar
KeywordsAdult, Female, Gray Matter, Humans, Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Male, Middle Aged, Multiple Sclerosis, Relapsing-Remitting, Neuroimaging, Thalamus

BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Both thalamic iron deposition and atrophy have been reported in patients with multiple sclerosis compared with healthy controls, but how they are related is unclear. The purpose of this study was to understand the pathophysiologic basis for this iron deposition.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: Ninety-five patients with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis underwent 3T MR imaging with a standardized protocol that included quantitative susceptibility mapping to measure iron concentration and a 3D T1 echo-spoiled gradient-echo sequence to obtain thalamic volumes. Volumes of interest were manually delineated on the quantitative susceptibility map to encompass both thalami. Multivariate regression analyses were performed to identify the association between thalamic susceptibility and volume. Associations between thalamic susceptibility and total gray matter volume, cortical thickness, and T2 lesion volume were also assessed.

RESULTS: The relative susceptibility of the thalamus was associated with T2 lesion volume ( = .015) and was higher in the presence of enhancing lesions ( = .013). The relative susceptibility of the thalami was not associated with thalamic volumes, total gray matter volumes, or cortical thickness ( > .05).

CONCLUSIONS: Iron levels in the thalami are associated with T2 lesion burden and the presence of enhancing lesions, but not with thalamic or gray matter volumes, suggesting that iron accumulation is associated with white matter inflammation rather than gray matter neurodegeneration.

Alternate JournalAJNR Am J Neuroradiol
PubMed ID29371258
PubMed Central IDPMC6060040
Grant ListR01 NS090464 / NS / NINDS NIH HHS / United States
UL1 TR000457 / TR / NCATS NIH HHS / United States
UL1 TR002384 / TR / NCATS NIH HHS / United States

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