Early detection of ventilation-induced brain injury using magnetic resonance spectroscopy and diffusion tensor imaging: An in vivo study in preterm lambs

Beatrice Skiold, Qi-Zhu Wu, Stuart Brian Hooper, Peter G Davis, Richard McIntyre, Mary Tolcos, James Todd Pearson, Ruth Vreys, Gary Francis Egan, Samantha Kate Barton, Jeanie Ling Yoong Cheong, Graeme Polglase

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23 Citations (Scopus)


Background and Aim: High tidal volume (VT) ventilation during resuscitation of preterm lambs results in brain injury evident histologically within hours after birth. We aimed to investigate whether magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) and/or diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) can be used for early in vivo detection of ventilation-induced brain injury in preterm lambs. Methods: Newborn lambs (0.85 gestation) were stabilized with a protective ventilation strategy (PROT, n = 7: prophylactic Curosurf, sustained inflation, VT 7 mL/kg, positive end expiratory pressure (PEEP) 5 cmH2O) or an initial 15 minutes of injurious ventilation (INJ, n = 10: VT 12 mL/kg, no PEEP, late Curosurf) followed by PROT ventilation for the remainder of the experiment. At 1 hour, lambs underwent structural magnetic resonance imaging (Siemens, 3 Tesla). For measures of mean/axial/radial diffusivity (MD, AD, RD) and fractional anisotropy (FA), 30 direction DTI was performed. Regions of interests encompassed the thalamus, internal capsule, periventricular white matter and the cerebellar vermis. MRS was performed using a localized single-voxel (15?15?20 mm 3, echo time 270 ms) encompassing suptratentorial deep nuclear grey matter and central white matter. Peak-area ratios for lactate (Lac) relative to N-acetylaspartate (NAA), choline (Cho) and creatine (Cr) were calculated. Groups were compared using 2-way RM-ANOVA, Mann-Whitney U-test and Spearman s correlations. Results: No cerebral injury was seen on structural MR images. Lambs in the INJ group had higher mean FA and lower mean RD in the thalamus compared to PROT lambs, but not in the other regions of interest. Peak-area lactate ratios >1.0 was only seen in INJ lambs. A trend of higher mean peak-area ratios for Lac/Cr and Lac/Cho was seen, which correlated with lower pH in both groups. Conclusion: Acute changes in brain diffusion measures and metabolite peak-area ratios were observed after injurious ventilation. Early MRS/DTI is able to detect the initiation of ventilation-induced brain injury.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere95804
Number of pages8
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2014

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