Confounding neurodegenerative effects of manganese for in vivo MR imaging in rat models of brain insults

Viviane Bouilleret, Lisa Cardamone, Cyril Liu, Amelia S. Koe, Ke Fang, John P. Williams, Damian E. Myers, Terence J. O'Brien, Nigel C. Jones

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15 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: To examine the long-term consequences of manganese exposure due to the use of manganese-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging (MEMRI) in a model of closed head injury, the fluid-percussion injury (FPI) model. Materials and Methods: Two groups of adult male Wistar rats (n = 72) were studied with either MEMRI, whereby rats receive MnCl 2 (100 mg/kg intraperitoneally) 24 hours prior to scanning, or standard MRI (sMRI) with no contrast agent. Rats from both groups underwent FPI or sham injury and were longitudinally assessed for 6 months for neurological toxicity using behavioral tests, EEG recording, and MRI scanning. Results: Regardless of whether they received FPI, MEMRI animals showed progressive signs of cerebral toxicity compared with sMRI rats, including significantly reduced weight gain, progressive brain volume decrease, and increased anxiety and depressive-like behaviors. Conclusion: Long-term structural and functional consequences of using manganese as a contrast agent for MRI can confound experimental outcomes and must be taken into account when designing longitudinal imaging studies using manganese-enhanced MRI.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)774-784
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Magnetic Resonance Imaging
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • manganese toxicity
  • manganese-enhanced MRI
  • neurodegeneration
  • traumatic brain injury

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