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Development, validation and application of novel strategies for MRI data acquisition, image registration and segmentation of the spinal cord in patients affected by multiple sclerosis.

English title Development, validation and application of novel strategies for MRI data acquisition, image registration and segmentation of the spinal cord in patients affected by multiple sclerosis.
Applicant Bieri Oliver
Number 156860
Funding scheme Project funding (Div. I-III)
Research institution Neurologische Klinik und Poliklinik Universitätsspital Basel
Institution of higher education University of Basel - BS
Main discipline Neurology, Psychiatry
Start/End 01.01.2015 - 30.04.2018
Approved amount 499'000.00
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All Disciplines (3)

Discipline
Neurology, Psychiatry
Other disciplines of Physics
Biomedical Engineering

Keywords (5)

MRI; segmentation; spinal cord; multiple sclerosis; atrophy

Lay Summary (German)

Lead
Die Multiple Sklerose ist eine entzündliche Erkrankung des Gehirns und Rückenmarks. Ein krankheitsbedingter Nervenzelluntergang scheint ein wichtiger Faktor zu sein, der zur Entstehung von körperlicher Behinderung bei MS Betroffenen führen kann. Ein solcher Nervenzelluntergang geht mit Schrumpfungsvorgängen im Gehirn und Rückenmark einher. In dieser Studie werden wir in einem interdisziplinären Team neue Methoden entwickeln, um hochauflösende kernspintomographische Bilder des Rückenmarks zu erzeugen, welche eine automatisierte Unterscheidung in Veränderungen der grauen und weissen Substanz des Rückenmarks erlauben. Es ist dann geplant, die entwickelte Methodik mit MS-Betroffenen zu testen.
Lay summary

Inhalt und Ziele des Forschungsprojekts

Ein Nervenzelluntergang bei MS geht mit Schrumpfungsvorgängen (Volumenverlust) im Gehirn und Rückenmark einher. Frühere Studien zum Rückenmark verwendeten jedoch überwiegend recht ungenaue, teilweise überwiegend manuelle Methoden zur Volumenbestimmung des Rückenmarks und solche Studien waren erschwert durch eine niedrige räumliche Auflösung der Bilder, Bildartefakte und lange Untersuchungszeiten mittels Kernspintomographie. Alles in allem sind bisherige Techniken für einen Einsatz im klinischen Alltag noch nicht geeignet. Ferner war es in der Vergangenheit nicht möglich, eine (automatische) Unterscheidung in Volumenverluste, welche in Nervenzellgebieten (graue Substanz) oder Nervenfasergebieten (weisse Substanz) des Rückenmarks auftreten vorzunehmen.  Vermutlich ist aber genau diese Unterscheidung besonders bedeutsam.

In dieser Studie werden wir neue Methoden entwickeln, um hochauflösende kernspintomographische Bilder des Rückenmarks zu erzeugen, welche eine Unterscheidung in Veränderungen der grauen und weissen Substanz erlauben. In einem weiteren Schritt werden wir automatisierte Auswerteprogramme entwickeln, die eine objektive, schnelle und zuverlässige Volumenbestimmung des Rückenmarks und speziell der grauen und weissen Substanz erlauben. Schliesslich ist geplant, die entwickelte Methodik mit MS-Betroffenen zu testen. Hierbei soll die Praktikabilität und der Stellenwert solcher Volumenbestimmungen bestimmt werden. Insbesondere soll auch untersucht werden, ob die Methodik genau genug ist, um Volumenveränderungen über die Zeit zuverlässig zu erkennen.

Wissenschaftlicher und gesellschaftlicher Kontext des Forschungsprojekts

Das Projekt befasst sich mit klinischer Forschung. Mittel- bis längerfristig könnten die zu entwickelnden Methoden die klinische Betreuung von MS Betroffenen verbessern und auch neue Endpunkte in klinischen Studien zur MS im Rahmen der Entwicklung neuer Medikamente ermöglichen.

 

Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 27.09.2014

Responsible applicant and co-applicants

Employees

Publications

Publication
Automatic Spinal Cord Gray Matter Quantification: A Novel Approach
Tsagkas C., Horvath A., Altermatt A., Pezold S., Weigel M., Haas T., Amann M., Kappos L., Sprenger T., Bieri O., Cattin P., Parmar K. (2019), Automatic Spinal Cord Gray Matter Quantification: A Novel Approach, in American Journal of Neuroradiology, 1592.
Spinal cord imaging using averaged magnetization inversion recovery acquisitionsSpinal Cord Imaging Using AMIRA
Weigel Matthias, Bieri Oliver (2018), Spinal cord imaging using averaged magnetization inversion recovery acquisitionsSpinal Cord Imaging Using AMIRA, in Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, 79(4), 1870-1881.
Reliable and fast volumetry of the lumbar spinal cord using cord image analyser (Cordial)
Tsagkas Charidimos, Cattin Philippe, Parmar Katrin (2018), Reliable and fast volumetry of the lumbar spinal cord using cord image analyser (Cordial), in European Radiology, 1.
High Order Slice Interpolation for Medical Images
Horvath Antal, Pezold Simon, Weigel Matthias, Katrin Parmar, Cattin Philippe (2017), High Order Slice Interpolation for Medical Images, in Prince Jerry L, Frangi Alejandro F, Tsaftaris Sotirios A, Gooya Ali (ed.), Springer, Cham, 69-78.
Variational Segmentation of the White and Gray Matter in the Spinal Cord Using a Shape Prior
Horvath Antal, Pezold Simon, Weigel Matthias, Parmar Katrin, Bieri Oliver, Philippe Cattin (2016), Variational Segmentation of the White and Gray Matter in the Spinal Cord Using a Shape Prior, in Glocker Ben, Yao Jianhua, Zheng Guoyan, Li Shuo, Frangi Alejandro, Vrtovec Tomaz (ed.), Springer, Cham, 26-37.
Preferential Spinal Cord Volume Loss in Primary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis
Tsagkas Charidimos, Cattin Philippe, Bieri Oliver, Kappos Ludwig, Parmar Katrin, Preferential Spinal Cord Volume Loss in Primary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis, in Multiple Sclerosis Journal.
Spinal Cord Volume Loss: A Marker of Disease Progression in Multiple Sclerosis
Tsagkas Charidimos, Cattin Philippe, Bieri Oliver, Kappos Ludwig, Parmar Katrin, Spinal Cord Volume Loss: A Marker of Disease Progression in Multiple Sclerosis, in Neurology.

Collaboration

Group / person Country
Types of collaboration
Katrin Weier Switzerland (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication

Scientific events

Active participation

Title Type of contribution Title of article or contribution Date Place Persons involved
13th Annual ARSEP MRI Workshop Talk given at a conference Reliability Of Automatic Spinal Cord Gray Matter Volumetry Using Averaged Magnetization Inversion Recovery Acquisitions 02.02.2018 Paris, France Weigel Matthias; Tsagkas Charidimos; Kappos Ludwig; Bieri Oliver; Cattin Philippe; Horvath Antal;
European Committee for Treatment & Research in Multiple Sclerosis, 7th joint ECTRIMS - ACTRIMS Meeting Poster Preferential Spinal Cord Volume Loss in Primary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis 25.10.2017 Paris, France Kappos Ludwig; Bieri Oliver; Tsagkas Charidimos; Cattin Philippe;
ISMRM 25TH ANNUAL MEETING & EXHIBITION Poster High Resolution Steady State Diffusion and Magnetization Transfer Imaging of the Spinal Cord 22.04.2017 Hawaii, United States of America Bieri Oliver; Weigel Matthias;
ISMRM 25TH ANNUAL MEETING & EXHIBITION Poster Rapid Spinal Cord Imaging 22.04.2017 Hawaii, United States of America Bieri Oliver; Weigel Matthias;
32nd European Committee for Teaching and Research in Multiple Sclerosis Talk given at a conference Spinal Cord Volume Loss Predicts Disease Activity and Disability over Time in Multiple Sclerosis 14.09.2016 London, Great Britain and Northern Ireland Kappos Ludwig; Bieri Oliver; Tsagkas Charidimos; Cattin Philippe;
2nd Congress of the European Academy of Neurology Talk given at a conference Spinal cord volume loss in multiple sclerosis patients: a 7-year longitudinal study 28.05.2016 Kopenhagen, Denmark Cattin Philippe; Tsagkas Charidimos; Kappos Ludwig; Bieri Oliver;


Associated projects

Number Title Start Funding scheme
182008 Development and Application of Rapid Conventional and Unconventional Quantitative Magnetic Resonance Imaging 01.05.2019 Project funding (Div. I-III)

Abstract

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an inflammatory-demyelinating disease of the central nervous system. Neurodegeneration seems to be the key driver for the accrual of physical and neuropsychological disability and atrophy is one of the hallmarks of neurodegeneration in MS. Spinal cord (SC) atrophy in MS has previously been reported both in cross-sectional and longitudinal studies. Moreover, MS-related physical disability seems to be especially severe when there is spinal cord atrophy. Several MRI-based approaches for measuring SC cross-sectional area and/or volume have been proposed including manual or semi-automatic cross-sectional area measurements and active surface models. However, previous approaches have been hampered by the relatively low-resolution and contrast of the acquired MR images, long measurement times, artifacts as well as the low reproducibility of the segmentation techniques. Moreover, many of the currently applied post-processing techniques require considerable manual interventions leading to high costs and again low interobserver agreement. Such techniques are currently not suitable for application in clinical practice or as outcome measures in therapeutic clinical trials. Moreover, segmentation of the SC into grey and white matter has not been previously achieved using automated methods in MS and hence, so far no clear-cut conclusions on whether volume loss of the spinal cord primarily affects grey or white matter are possible in larger patient populations.We here propose a comprehensive interdisciplinary approach combining MRI sequence development in the setting of cutting-edge 3T MRI infrastructure, development of new techniques for image post-processing and segmentation with the systematic validation and application of such techniques in a large cohort of deeply phenotyped MS patients. This approach will allow studying the relation of SC volume loss to SC lesions and brain lesions, determine the degree and relevance of white versus grey matter loss in the SC, depict key areas of spinal cord involvement and to relate spinal cord changes to other advanced (brain and spinal cord) MRI measures in MS. Finally and most importantly, we will explore the clinical correlations of spinal cord atrophy, specifically spinal cord grey matter atrophy and the suitability to detect changes over time. Once reliable and automated techniques for spinal cord segmentation become available, this will importantly impact the follow-up of MS patients in clinical practice and also provide new potentially more sensitive outcome metrics for clinical trials.
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