MRI contrast agents: Classification and application (Review)

  • Authors:
    • Yu-Dong Xiao
    • Ramchandra Paudel
    • Jun Liu
    • Cong Ma
    • Zi-Shu Zhang
    • Shun-Ke Zhou
  • View Affiliations

  • Published online on: September 21, 2016     https://doi.org/10.3892/ijmm.2016.2744
  • Pages: 1319-1326
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Abstract

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) contrast agents are categorised according to the following specific features: chemical composition including the presence or absence of metal atoms, route of administration, magnetic properties, effect on the magnetic resonance image, biodistribution and imaging applications. The majority of these agents are either paramagnetic ion complexes or superparamagnetic magnetite particles and contain lanthanide elements such as gadolinium (Gd3+) or transition metal manganese (Mn2+). These elements shorten the T1 or T2 relaxation time, thereby causing increased signal intensity on T1-weighted images or reduced signal intensity on T2-weighted images. Most paramagnetic contrast agents are positive agents. These agents shorten the T1, so the enhanced parts appear bright on T1-weighted images. Dysprosium, superparamagnetic agents and ferromagnetic agents are negative contrast agents. The enhanced parts appear darker on T2-weighted images. MRI contrast agents incorporating chelating agents reduces storage in the human body, enhances excretion and reduces toxicity. MRI contrast agents may be administered orally or intravenously. According to biodistribution and applications, MRI contrast agents may be categorised into three types: extracellular fluid, blood pool and target/organ-specific agents. A number of contrast agents have been developed to selectively distinguish liver pathologies. Some agents are also capable of targeting other organs, inflammation as well as specific tumors.
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November 2016
Volume 38 Issue 5

Print ISSN: 1107-3756
Online ISSN:1791-244X

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APA
Xiao, Y., Paudel, R., Liu, J., Ma, C., Zhang, Z., & Zhou, S. (2016). MRI contrast agents: Classification and application (Review). International Journal of Molecular Medicine, 38, 1319-1326. https://doi.org/10.3892/ijmm.2016.2744
MLA
Xiao, Y., Paudel, R., Liu, J., Ma, C., Zhang, Z., Zhou, S."MRI contrast agents: Classification and application (Review)". International Journal of Molecular Medicine 38.5 (2016): 1319-1326.
Chicago
Xiao, Y., Paudel, R., Liu, J., Ma, C., Zhang, Z., Zhou, S."MRI contrast agents: Classification and application (Review)". International Journal of Molecular Medicine 38, no. 5 (2016): 1319-1326. https://doi.org/10.3892/ijmm.2016.2744