Preclinical cardiac MR is challenging and time-consuming. A fast and comprehensive acquisition protocol and standardized image post-processing may improve preclinical research, reducing acquisition time, costs and variability of results. In the present study, we evaluated the feasibility of a contrast-enhanced 3D IntraGate steady-state cine sequence (ce-3D-IG-cine) with short acquisition time (11 min) for a single-shot combined characterization of left ventricle (LV) remodeling and infarct size (IS) in a mouse model of acute ischemia-reperfusion injury. Sixteen male C57BL/6N mice underwent 7T cardiac MR (Bruker, BioSpec 70/30) including optimized ce-3D-IG-cine (total scan time 11 min) at day 1, 5 and 28 after surgery. LV end-diastolic volume (EDVMR) and ejection fraction (EFMR) extracted from MR were compared to ones from short-axis (SA-EDVecho, SA-EFecho) and parasternal long-axis (LA-EDVecho, LA-EFecho) echocardiography. IS was manually and semiautomatically segmented from ce-3D-IG-cine using different standard deviation (SD +2, +3, +4, +5, +6 in respect to a reference tissue). Mice were sacrificed at day 28, immediately after imaging. IS at day 28 was compared to injury burden at histology. MR and echocardiographic morpho-functional parameters were compared, as IS from MR and histology. Bland-Altman plots were used to assess the agreement in ischemic burden segmentation. Volumetric and functional parameters measured on ce-3D-IG-cine correlated to the correspondent echocardiographic parameter (EDVMR vs SA-EDVecho: ρ = 0.813; EDVMR vs LA-EDVecho: ρ = 0.845; EFMR vs SA-EFecho ρ = 0.612; EFMR vs LA-EFecho ρ = 0.791; p < 0.001 in all cases). Manually segmented IS strongly correlated with the scar at histology (ρ = 0.904, p < 0.001). A threshold of +3SD showed the highest performance for semiautomatic assessment of IS compared to manual segmentation (ρ = 0.965, p < 0.001), with an overall reproducibility of 73%, and a peak reproducibility of 80% at day 1. The ce-3D-IG-cine sequence, manually or semiautomatically segmented using 3SD threshold, allows fast and comprehensive LV morpho-functional and structural characterization in myocardial ischemia-reperfusion injury model.
- Heart Ventricles/diagnostic imaging
- Imaging, Three-Dimensional
- Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Cine
- Mice, Inbred C57BL
- Reperfusion Injury/diagnostic imaging
- Reproducibility of Results