Magnetic Resonance Imaging Biomarkers of Renal Structure and Function
The kidney's major role in filtration depends on its high blood flow, concentrating mechanisms, and biochemical activation. The kidney's greatest strengths also lead to vulnerability for drug-induced nephrotoxicity and other renal injuries. The current standard to diagnose renal injuries is with a percutaneous renal biopsy, which can be biased and insufficient. In one particular case, biopsy of a kidney with renal cell carcinoma can actually initiate metastasis. Tools that are sensitive and specific to detect renal disease early are essential, especially noninvasive diagnostic imaging. While other imaging modalities (ultrasound and x-ray/CT) have their unique advantages and disadvantages, MRI has superb soft tissue contrast without ionizing radiation. More importantly, there is a richness of contrast mechanisms in MRI that has yet to be explored and applied to study renal disease.
The focus of this work is to advance preclinical imaging tools to study the structure and function of the renal system. Studies were conducted in normal and disease models to understand general renal physiology as well as pathophysiology. This dissertation is separated into two parts--the first is the identification of renal architecture with ex vivo MRI; the second is the characterization of renal dynamics and function with in vivo MRI. High resolution ex vivo imaging provided several opportunities including: 1) identification of fine renal structures, 2) implementation of different contrast mechanisms with several pulse sequences and reconstruction methods, 3) development of image-processing tools to extract regions and structures, and 4) understanding of the nephron structures that create MR contrast and that are important for renal physiology. The ex vivo studies allowed for understanding and translation to in vivo studies. While the structure of this dissertation is organized by individual projects, the goal is singular: to develop magnetic resonance imaging biomarkers for renal system.
The work presented here includes three ex vivo studies and two in vivo studies:
1) Magnetic resonance histology of age-related nephropathy in sprague dawley.
2) Quantitative susceptibility mapping of kidney inflammation and fibrosis in type 1 angiotensin receptor-deficient mice.
3) Susceptibility tensor imaging of the kidney and its microstructural underpinnings.
4) 4D MRI of renal function in the developing mouse.
5) 4D MRI of polycystic kidneys in rapamycin treated Glis3-deficient mice.
Medical imaging and radiology
Health and environmental sciences
kidney renal system
magnetic resonance imaging
quantitative susceptibility mapping
susceptibility tensor imaging
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