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Diffusion MRI of the prostate at 300 mT/m

Molendowska, Malwina 2023. Diffusion MRI of the prostate at 300 mT/m. PhD Thesis, Cardiff University.
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Diffusion magnetic resonance imaging gained worldwide recognition as the chief non-invasive mean of mapping microstructural properties of biological tissue. By far, the most common clinical application of this method is diagnosing conditions such as stroke and cancer. Prostate cancer is one of the leading cancer-related causes of deaths among men. Recently, MRI became a triage test in the diagnostic pathway for men suspected of having prostate cancer. While providing a very useful contrast, limited gradient power of clinical MR hardware prevents it from capturing the whole range of microstructural changes. For that reason, one research priority is to provide novel MRI-based biomarkers for increased efficacy of its early diagnosis. Assessing early microstructural changes in the prostate is of fundamental importance, as it can increase patients’ chance of survival. Novel technological developments can be used when trying to address the issues with limited spatial resolution, sensitivity and specificity of the clinical MRI scans. The work presented in this thesis focused on the use of one of the most powerful whole-body MRI scanners - in terms of the gradient amplitude - available worldwide to advance diffusion MRI of the prostate. Advanced image reconstruction, accounting for MR field perturbations, was exploited to address concerns regarding low image quality resulting from limited MR gradient fidelity. In addition, diffusion MRI was probed at sub-millimetre spatial resolution and effectively enhanced spatial resolution of the images which is crucial for accurate localisation of cancerous lesions. The work presented in this thesis showcases the ways to obtain higher spatial resolution, and boosted signal-to-noise ratio in diffusion MRI images of the prostate, as well as increased sensitivity to subtle tissue alterations that can be observed early in prostate cancer. The preliminary results are promising, but further development of methods is required, including exploring more advanced microstructural imaging sequences and methods for analysing the data they allow to obtain.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Date Type: Completion
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Cardiff University Brain Research Imaging Centre (CUBRIC)
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 17 April 2023
Last Modified: 18 Apr 2023 11:01

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