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De Guio, François; Reyes, Sonia; Vignaud, Alexandre; Duering, Marco; Ropele, Stefan; Duchesnay, Edouard; Chabriat, Hugues and Jouvent, Eric (2014): In Vivo High-Resolution 7 Tesla MRI Shows Early and Diffuse Cortical Alterations in CADASIL.
In: PLOS ONE 9(8), e106311 [PDF, 2MB]

[thumbnail of 10.1371_journal.pone.0106311.pdf]
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Background and Purpose: Recent data suggest that early symptoms may be related to cortex alterations in CADASIL (Cerebral Autosomal-Dominant Arteriopathy with Subcortical Infarcts and Leukoencephalopathy), a monogenic model of cerebral small vessel disease (SVD). The aim of this study was to investigate cortical alterations using both high-resolution T2* acquisitions obtained with 7 Tesla MRI and structural T1 images with 3 Tesla MRI in CADASIL patients with no or only mild symptomatology (modified Rankin's scale <= 1 and Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE) >= 24). Methods: Complete reconstructions of the cortex using 7 Tesla T2* acquisitions with 0.7 mm isotropic resolution were obtained in 11 patients (52.1 +/- 13.2 years, 36% male) and 24 controls (54.8 +/- 11.0 years, 42% male). Seven Tesla T2* within the cortex and cortical thickness and morphology obtained from 3 Tesla images were compared between CADASIL and control subjects using general linear models. Results: MMSE, brain volume, cortical thickness and global sulcal morphology did not differ between groups. By contrast, T2* measured by 7 Tesla MRI was significantly increased in frontal, parietal, occipital and cingulate cortices in patients after correction for multiple testing. These changes were not related to white matter lesions, lacunes or microhemorrhages in patients having no brain atrophy compared to controls. Conclusions: Seven Tesla MRI, by contrast to state of the art post-processing of 3 Tesla acquisitions, shows diffuse T2* alterations within the cortical mantle in CADASIL whose origin remains to be determined.

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