Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is an important diagnostic tool in different central nervous system (CNS) disorders including brain cancer and cerebrovascular, inflammatory and neurodegenerative diseases. The most commonly used MRI contrast agents are gadolinium-based compounds that have been successfully employed in combination with T1-weighted sequences to detect and monitor focal disease-related abnormalities. These gadolinium-based contrast agents facilitate the visualisation of areas of blood brain barrier disruption, show good performance in diagnostic procedures and present a favourable safety profile. In multiple sclerosis (MS), conventional MRI, including T2-weighted and gadolinium-enhanced T1-weighted sequences, is pivotal to diagnose and to monitor disease activity and progression. Advanced magnetic resonance (MR) techniques and new contrast agents are currently being developed to improve the ability to identify CNS structural and functional abnormalities in MS, which may better correlate with and predict the clinical course of the disease. © TOUCH BRIEFINGS 2012.
- Gadolinium-based contrast agents
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
- Multiple sclerosis (MS)