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Scientific result | Article | MRI | Physics

A double ceramic probe to optimize magnetic resonance microscopy.

​Researchers from the M-CUBE european consortium, together with a team from NeuroSpin, are demonstrating the possibility of imaging two samples by 17.2 T magnetic resonance microscopy (NeuroSpin imager), at a single acquisition time, using two coupled ceramic resonators (probes) that lead to a better signal-to-noise ratio compared to reference MRI probes.

Published on 26 October 2020

The spatial resolution and signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) achievable in magnetic resonance microscopy* are limited by intrinsic probe losses** and probe-sample interactions. Conventional MRI probes are copper coils, of variable shapes, which surround the patient or the part of the body to be explored and which are capable of producing and/or capturing the radiofrequency signal necessary for image acquisition.

In a previous study, the researchers had shown an improvement of the SNR thanks to the use of a new ceramic probe. Here, they show that the use of a double ceramic probe, which contains 2 samples, leads to an SNR improved by a factor close to the square root of 2 compared to a solenoid optimized for one sample.

In the era of ultra-high field MRI imaging, these results, obtained thanks to a low-cost and low-complexity experimental device capable of imaging two samples during the same acquisition time interval and a single reception channel, are promising for the reduction of MRI acquisition times.

This article was featured on the cover page of the November issue of NMR in BioMedicine (2020; vol.33, no.11). Author of the image : Marine A.C. Moussu/Fresnel Institute

Contact Joliot : Luisa Ciobanu  

* Magnetic resonance microscopy offers the possibility to image samples of a few millimeters with sub-micrometric resolution, i.e. at spatial resolutions below 100 µm3.
** In magnetic resonance microscopy (MR microscopy), the image is produced by a probe or resonator which, when powered by an electric current, produces a magnetic field necessary for imaging.

European funding
This work was carried out in the framework of the European H2020 FET-Open M-CUBE project, in which several NeuroSpin researchers are involved. 

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