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ISMRM Perfusion Workshop

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March 22, 2022

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Earlier this month, our CEO Xavier and CTO Aaron travelled out to the City of Angels to attend the ISMRM’s Perfusion Workshop, at the University of Southern California’s Health Sciences Conference Center. With two years of virtual meeting fatigue setting in, it was truly great to be able to meet our sorely-missed colleagues in the world of perfusion MRI face-to-face!

The conference had some great sessions on recent developments in perfusion imaging, and we particularly liked those on combined structural and haemodynamic imaging using MR Fingerprinting ASL, perfusion imaging using hyperpolarised 13C pyruvate, and advanced techniques to measure blood-brain barrier permeability. Updates were given on the soon-to-be-published ASL “grey papers”, that highlight technical developments since the 2015 ASL White Paper. These include further recommendations for more advanced and varied ASL techniques such as Multi-Delay ASL, Velocity Selective ASL, and Body ASL.

GSP’s contribution to the conference was the presentation of a poster detailing some developments that we have been making to our QASPER perfusion phantom. Here we have done away with the porous material that normally simulates the capillary bed, and instead are making use of the mixing due to vortical flow within the perfusion chamber. Watch this space for more developments…

The Open Science Initiative in Perfusion Imaging (OSIPI) also gave an update on their activities, including preliminary results from the ASL Challenge, which aims to characterise the variability of CBF quantification arising from different image processing software pipelines, by inviting challenge entrants to analyse both population based and synthetically generated digital reference object data and submit the results. The synthetic DRO was created using GSP’s very own open-source digital reference object software, ASLDRO. A variety of programming languages and processing tools were used in the submissions, unsurprisingly leading to variation in the final results, and emphasising the importance of using tools such as digital reference objects when creating analysis software.

It wasn’t all hard work, the local organising committee planned an excursion to Griffith Park and Observatory. Despite being caught in a (rare for LA) rain shower, we persevered and made it to the top of Mount Hollywood where the view was incredible.

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