Purpose To improve myocardial and blood T1 measurements with a multi-variable T1 fitting model specifically modified for a segmented multi-shot FLASH sequence. Methods The proposed method was first evaluated in a series of phantoms simulating realistic tissues, and then in healthy rats (n = 8) and rats with acute myocardial infarction (MI) induced by coronary artery ligation (n = 8). Results By taking into account the saturation effect caused by sampling α-train pulses, and the longitudinal magnetization recovery between readouts, our model provided more accurate T1 estimate than the conventional three-parameter fit in phantoms under realistic gating procedures (error of -0.42 ± 1.73% versus -3.40 ± 1.46%, respectively, when using the measured inversion efficiency, β). The baseline myocardial T1 values in healthy rats was 1636.3 ± 23.4 ms at 7 Tesla. One day postligation, the T1 values in the remote and proximal myocardial areas were 1637.5 ± 62.6 ms and 1740.3 ± 70.5 ms, respectively. In rats with acute MI, regional differences in myocardial T1 values were observed both before and after the administration of gadolinium. Conclusion The proposed method has improved T1 estimate as validated in phantoms and could advance applications in rodents using quantitative myocardial T1 mapping. Magn Reson Med 72:737-748, 2014.
- acute myocardial infarction
- segmented multi-shot FLASH