Changes in brain perfusion in successive arterial spin labeling MRI scans in neonates with hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy

Maia Proisy 1, 2, * Isabelle Corouge 1 Antoine Leghouy 1 Amélie Nicolas 2 Valérie Charon 2 Nadia Mazille 3 Stéphanie Leroux 3 Bertrand Bruneau 2 Christian Barillot 1, * Jean-Christophe Ferré 2, 1, *
* Corresponding author
1 Empenn
INSERM - Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale, Inria Rennes – Bretagne Atlantique , IRISA-D5 - SIGNAUX ET IMAGES NUMÉRIQUES, ROBOTIQUE
Abstract : The primary objective of this study was to evaluate changes in cerebral blood flow (CBF) using arterial spin labeling MRI between day 4 of life (DOL4) and day 11 of life (DOL11) in neonates with hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) treated with hypothermia. The secondary objectives were to compare CBF values between the different regions of interest (ROIs) and between infants with ischemic lesions on MRI and infants with normal MRI findings. We prospectively included all consecutive neonates with HIE admitted to the neonatal intensive care unit of our institution who were eligible for therapeutic hypothermia. Each neonate systematically underwent two MRI examinations as close as possible to day 4 (early MRI) and day 11 (late MRI) of life. A custom processing pipeline of morphological and perfusion imaging data adapted to neonates was developed to perform automated ROI analysis. Twenty-eight neonates were included in the study between April 2015 and December 2017. There were 16 boys and 12 girls. Statistical analysis was finally performed on 37 MRIs, 17 early MRIs and 20 late MRIs. Eleven neonates had both early and late MRIs of good quality available. Eight out of 17 neonates (47%) had an abnormal on late MRI as performed and 7/20 neonates (35%) had an abnormal late MRI. CBF values in the basal ganglia and thalami (BGT) and temporal lobes were significantly higher on DOL4 than on DOL11. There were no significant differences between DOL4 and DOL11 for the other ROIs. CBF values were significantly higher in the BGT vs. the cortical GM, on both DOL4 and DOL11. On DOL4, the CBF was significantly higher in the cortical GM, the BGT, and the frontal and parietal lobes in subjects with an abnormal MRI compared to those with a normal MRI. On DOL11, CBF values in each ROI were not significantly different between the normal MRI group and the abnormal MRI group, except for the temporal lobes. This article proposes an innovative processing pipeline for morphological and ASL data suited to neonates that enable automated segmentation to obtain CBF values over ROIs. We evaluate CBF on two successive scans within the first 15 days of life in the same subjects. ASL imaging in asphyxiated neonates seems more relevant when used relatively early, in the first days of life. The correlation of intra-subject changes in cerebral perfusion between early and late MRI with neurodevelopmental outcome warrants investigation in a larger cohort, to determine whether the CBF pattern change can provide prognostic information beyond that provided by visible structural abnormalities on conventional MRI.
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Maia Proisy, Isabelle Corouge, Antoine Leghouy, Amélie Nicolas, Valérie Charon, et al.. Changes in brain perfusion in successive arterial spin labeling MRI scans in neonates with hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy. Neuroimage-Clinical, Elsevier, 2019, 101939, pp.1-31. ⟨10.1016/j.nicl.2019.101939⟩. ⟨inserm-02189386⟩

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