Chemical Exchange Weighted Molecular MRI: Technical Development and Clinical Translation

Project PI:  Ravinder Reddy, Ph.D.

This TR&D project focuses on metabolite weighted CEST MRI technologies for spatially resolved imaging of several key metabolites (glutamate, myoinositol, creatine and lactate) that serve as biomarkers of a variety of disease processes. To this end, it develops novel technologies including (i) deep learning approaches for B1 and B0 correction of CEST images of different metabolites (ii) volumetric acquisition methods for improved spatial resolution of the CEST weighted imaging of different metabolites and (iii) technologies for dynamic studies of exercise mediated OXPHOS measurements in skeletal muscle, and (iv) CrCEST acquisition methods for measuring the metabolic activity of human myocardium. These technologies are driven by 7 collaborations and serve 8 service projects from within PENN and from other institutions distributed across the US. Successful completion of the goals will lead to technologies that will have sustained impact on the field of biomedicine through their contribution to the understanding of pathophysiological underpinnings of several disorders, and through the use of these technologies as biomarkers for diagnosis and evaluation of therapeutic responses of existing and novel therapies that constitute precision medicine strategies for patient care. In addition, dissemination of these technologies to collaborators from PENN and institutions across the country and abroad, and training of next generation of biomedical scientist and physician scientists, and potential opportunities for commercialization of the technologies will have immense national impact.