Yu Wang

Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States

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Publications (5)17.54 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) captures ischemic tissue that is likely to infarct, and has become one of the most widely used acute stroke imaging techniques. Diffusion kurtosis imaging (DKI) has lately been postulated as a complementary MRI method to stratify the heterogeneously damaged DWI lesion. However, the conventional DKI acquisition time is relatively long, limiting its use in the acute stroke setting. Recently, a fast kurtosis mapping method has been demonstrated in fixed brains and control subjects. The fast DKI approach provides mean diffusion and kurtosis measurements under substantially reduced scan time, making it amenable to acute stroke imaging. Because it is not practical to obtain and compare different means of DKI to test whether the fast DKI method can reliably detect diffusion and kurtosis lesions in acute stroke patients, our study investigated its diagnostic value using an animal model of acute stroke, a critical step before fast DKI acquisition can be routinely applied in the acute stroke setting. We found significant correlation, per voxel, between the diffusion and kurtosis coefficients measured using the fast and conventional DKI protocols. In acute stroke rats, the two DKI methods yielded diffusion and kurtosis lesions that were in good agreement. Importantly, substantial kurtosis-diffusion lesion mismatch was observed using the conventional (26 ± 13%, P < 0.01) and fast DKI methods (23 ± 8%, P < 0.01). In addition, regression analysis showed that the kurtosis-diffusion lesion mismatches obtained using conventional and fast DKI methods were substantially correlated (R(2) = 0.57, P = 0.02). Our results confirmed that the recently proposed fast DKI method is capable of capturing heterogeneous diffusion and kurtosis lesions in acute ischemic stroke, and thus is suitable for translational applications in the acute stroke clinical setting. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
    NMR in Biomedicine 11/2014; 27(11). DOI:10.1002/nbm.3188 · 3.04 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Chemical exchange saturation transfer (CEST) MRI is sensitive to dilute proteins and peptides as well as microenvironmental properties. However, the complexity of the CEST MRI effect, which varies with the labile proton content, exchange rate and experimental conditions, underscores the need for developing quantitative CEST (qCEST) analysis. Towards this goal, it has been shown that omega plot is capable of quantifying paramagnetic CEST MRI. However, the use of the omega plot is somewhat limited for diamagnetic CEST (DIACEST) MRI because it is more susceptible to direct radio frequency (RF) saturation (spillover) owing to the relatively small chemical shift. Recently, it has been found that, for dilute DIACEST agents that undergo slow to intermediate chemical exchange, the spillover effect varies little with the labile proton ratio and exchange rate. Therefore, we postulated that the omega plot analysis can be improved if RF spillover effect could be estimated and taken into account. Specifically, simulation showed that both labile proton ratio and exchange rate derived using the spillover effect-corrected omega plot were in good agreement with simulated values. In addition, the modified omega plot was confirmed experimentally, and we showed that the derived labile proton ratio increased linearly with creatine concentration (p < 0.01), with little difference in their exchange rate (p = 0.32). In summary, our study extends the conventional omega plot for quantitative analysis of DIACEST MRI. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
    Contrast Media & Molecular Imaging 07/2014; 9(4). DOI:10.1002/cmmi.1569 · 2.92 Impact Factor
  • Phillip Zhe Sun · Yu Wang · Jie Lu ·
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    ABSTRACT: Chemical exchange saturation transfer (CEST) imaging is a novel MRI technique that is sensitive to biomolecules, local pH and temperature, and offers considerable advantages for in vivo applications. However, the magnitude of CEST effect for dilute CEST agents undergoing slow or intermediate chemical exchange is typically small, requiring the use of signal averaging to enhance its sensitivity. Given that T2 -induced signal loss can be normalized by asymmetry analysis, the magnitude of CEST effect is independent of echo time. Therefore, CEST MRI with multi-echo echo planar imaging (EPI) readout should yield the same CEST effect as conventional single echo acquisition. Importantly, CEST multi-echo (CESTme) EPI images can be averaged to enhance CEST MRI sensitivity. The goal of this study was to validate CESTme EPI using a creatine-agarose gel CEST phantom with similar T2 as biological tissue. Using least-squares optimization, we found that the sensitivity of CESTme sequence was significantly higher than that obtained by conventional single echo CEST-EPI acquisition. Specifically, signal-to-noise ratio and contrast-to-noise ratio from the proposed CESTme EPI were approximately equivalent to that obtained by doubling the number of signal averages of the standard single echo CEST MRI sequence. In summary, our results demonstrated CESTme EPI for sensitivity-enhanced CEST imaging. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
    Contrast Media & Molecular Imaging 03/2014; 9(2):177-81. DOI:10.1002/cmmi.1546 · 2.92 Impact Factor
  • Phillip Zhe Sun · Yu Wang · Gang Xiao · Renhua Wu ·
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    ABSTRACT: Chemical exchange saturation transfer (CEST) imaging is sensitive to dilute proteins/peptides and microenvironmental properties, and has been increasingly evaluated for molecular imaging and in vivo applications. However, the experimentally measured CEST effect depends on the CEST agent concentration, exchange rate and relaxation time. In addition, there may be non-negligible direct radio-frequency (RF) saturation effects, particularly severe for diamagnetic CEST (DIACEST) agents owing to their relatively small chemical shift difference from that of the bulk water resonance. As such, the commonly used asymmetry analysis only provides CEST-weighted information. Recently, it has been shown with numerical simulation that both labile proton concentration and exchange rate can be determined by evaluating the RF power dependence of DIACEST effect. To validate the simulation results, we prepared and imaged two CEST phantoms: a pH phantom of serially titrated pH at a fixed creatine concentration and a concentration phantom of serially varied creatine concentration titrated to the same pH, and solved the labile proton fraction ratio and exchange rate per-pixel. For the concentration phantom, we showed that the labile proton fraction ratio is proportional to the CEST agent concentration with negligible change in the exchange rate. Additionally, we found the exchange rate of the pH phantom is dominantly base-catalyzed with little difference in the labile proton fraction ratio. In summary, our study demonstrated quantitative DIACEST MRI, which remains promising to augment the conventional CEST-weighted MRI analysis. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
    Contrast Media & Molecular Imaging 05/2013; 8(3):246-51. DOI:10.1002/cmmi.1524 · 2.92 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Ethanol consumption is inversely associated with the risk of ischemic stroke, suggesting a neuroprotective effect. In a rat model of transient cerebral ischemia, we identified ethanol as a possible treatment for acute ischemic stroke. Sprague-Dawley rats were subjected to middle cerebral artery occlusion for 2 hours. Five sets of experiments were conducted: to determine the dose-response effect of ethanol on brain infarction and functional outcome; to determine whether combining ethanol and hypothermia produces synergistic neuroprotection; to determine the therapeutic windows of opportunity for ethanol in stroke; to test whether ethanol promotes intracerebral hemorrhage in a hemorrhagic or ischemic stroke or after administration of thrombolytics; and to test the affect of ethanol on hypoxia-inducible factor-1α protein expression. Ethanol at 1.5 g/kg reduced infarct volume and behavioral dysfunction when administered at 2, 3, or 4 hours after middle cerebral artery occlusion. The protective effect of ethanol was not improved when paired with hypothermia. Ethanol did not promote cerebral hemorrhage in hemorrhagic or ischemic stroke in combination with recombinant tissue-type plasminogen activator or urokinase. Ethanol treatment (1.5 g/kg) increased protein levels of hypoxia-inducible factor-1α at 3 hours postreperfusion. Ethanol exerts a strong neuroprotective effect when administered up to 4 hours after ischemia, increases expression of hypoxia-inducible factor-1α, and does not promote intracerebral hemorrhage when used with thrombolytics. Ethanol is a potential neuroprotectant for acute ischemic stroke.
    Stroke 11/2011; 43(1):205-10. DOI:10.1161/STROKEAHA.111.629576 · 5.72 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

56 Citations
17.54 Total Impact Points


  • 2014
    • Harvard University
      Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States
  • 2013-2014
    • Harvard Medical School
      • Athinoula A. Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging
      Boston, Massachusetts, United States
  • 2011
    • Capital Medical University
      Peping, Beijing, China