A novel MRI-compatible brain ventricle phantom for validation of segmentation and volumetry methods

Medical Biophysics, Medical Sciences Building, The University of Western Ontario, London, ON, Canada.
Journal of Magnetic Resonance Imaging (Impact Factor: 3.21). 08/2012; 36(2):476-82. DOI: 10.1002/jmri.23612
Source: PubMed


To create a standardized, MRI-compatible, life-sized phantom of the brain ventricles to evaluate ventricle segmentation methods using T(1) -weighted MRI. An objective phantom is needed to test the many different segmentation programs currently used to measure ventricle volumes in patients with Alzheimer's disease.
A ventricle model was constructed from polycarbonate using a digital mesh of the ventricles created from the 3 Tesla (T) MRI of a subject with Alzheimer's disease. The ventricle was placed in a brain mold and surrounded with material composed of 2% agar in water, 0.01% NaCl and 0.0375 mM gadopentetate dimeglumine to match the signal intensity properties of brain tissue in 3T T(1) -weighted MRI. The 3T T(1) -weighted images of the phantom were acquired and ventricle segmentation software was used to measure ventricle volume.
The images acquired of the phantom successfully replicated in vivo signal intensity differences between the ventricle and surrounding tissue in T(1) -weighted images and were robust to segmentation. The ventricle volume was quantified to 99% accuracy at 1-mm voxel size.
The phantom represents a simple, realistic and objective method to test the accuracy of lateral ventricle segmentation methods and we project it can be extended to other anatomical structures.

Download full-text


Available from: Amanda Khan, Feb 04, 2015
1 Follower
538 Reads
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: An anthropomorphic phantom with realistic electrical properties allows for a more accurate reproduction of tissue current patterns during excitation. A temperature map can then probe the worst-case heating expected in the unperfused case. We describe an anatomically realistic human head phantom that allows rapid three-dimensional (3D) temperature mapping at 7T. The phantom was based on hand-labeled anatomical imaging data and consists of four compartments matching the corresponding human tissues in geometry and electrical properties. The increases in temperature resulting from radiofrequency excitation were measured with MR thermometry using a temperature-sensitive contrast agent (TmDOTMA(-) ) validated by direct fiber optic temperature measurements. Acquisition of 3D temperature maps of the full phantom with a temperature accuracy better than 0.1°C was achieved with an isotropic resolution of 5 mm and acquisition times of 2-4 minutes. Our results demonstrate the feasibility of constructing anatomically realistic phantoms with complex geometries incorporating the ability to measure accurate temperature maps in the phantom. The anthropomorphic temperature phantom is expected to provide a useful tool for the evaluation of the heating effects of both conventional and parallel transmit pulses and help validate electromagnetic and temperature simulations. Magn Reson Med, 2014. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
    Magnetic Resonance in Medicine 01/2015; 73(1). DOI:10.1002/mrm.25123 · 3.57 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Multi-centre MRI studies of the brain are essential for enrolling large and diverse patient cohorts, as required for the investigation of heterogeneous neurological and psychiatric diseases. However, the multi-site comparison of standard MRI data sets that are weighted with respect to tissue parameters such as the relaxation times (T1, T2) and proton density (PD) may be problematic, as signal intensities and image contrasts depend on site-specific details such as the sequences used, imaging parameters, and sensitivity profiles of the radiofrequency (RF) coils. Water or gel phantoms are frequently used for long-term and/or inter-site quality assessment. However, these phantoms hardly mimic the structure, shape, size or tissue distribution of the human brain. The goals of this study were: (1) to validate the long-term stability of a human post-mortem brain phantom, performing quantitative mapping of T1, T2, PD, and the magnetization transfer ratio (MTR) over a period of 18months; (2) to acquire and analyse data for this phantom and the brain of a healthy control (HC) in a multi-centre study for MRI protocol standardization in four centres, while conducting a voxel-wise as well as whole brain grey (GM) and white matter (WM) tissue volume comparison. MTR, T2, and the quotient of PD in WM and GM were stable in the post-mortem brain with no significant changes. T1 was found to decrease from 267/236ms (GM/WM) to 234/216ms between 5 and 17weeks post embedment, stabilizing during an 18-month period following the first scan at about 215/190ms. The volumetric measures, based on T1-weighted MP-RAGE images obtained at all participating centres, revealed inter- and intra-centre variations in the evaluated GM and WM volumes that displayed similar trends in both the post-mortem brain as well as the HC. At a confidence level of 95%, brain regions such as the brainstem, deep GM structures as well as boundaries between GM and WM tissue were found to be less reproducible than other brain regions in all participating centres. The results demonstrate that a post-mortem brain phantom may be used as a reliable tool for multi-centre MR studies. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Inc.
    NeuroImage 01/2015; 110. DOI:10.1016/j.neuroimage.2015.01.028 · 6.36 Impact Factor