Magnetic resonance imaging

An investigation of the origins of contrast in NMR spin echo images of plant tissue.

PMID 1373464


The effects that the spatial distribution of water protons and their transverse relaxation times have on the image contrast of spin echo images of courgette was investigated. The T2-weighted image of courgette contains the most anatomical information. The image contrast was explained using a phenomenological theory based on the Bloch equations, which gave an insight into the morphology and microdynamics of water in the plant tissue. The perceived contrast in the spin echo images of courgette, glucose and Sephadex bead solutions can be dramatically altered by keeping all the imaging acquisition parameters constant, such as the recycle and echo time, but reducing the interpulse spacing by introducing a CPMG train of 180 degrees pulses into the middle of the sequence. These changes were interpreted by considering the microenvironment of the water. This work demonstrates that the origin of image contrast in T2-weighted images of plant tissue can be understood using the water proton transverse relaxation theory developed by Hills et al.