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MRI techniques probe cerebral malaria's harm

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Dr. Marie-France Penet and colleagues in Marseille, France, have demonstrated the first in vivo MRI blood-brain barrier breakdown in cerebral malaria.

Dr. Marie-France Penet and colleagues in Marseille, France, have demonstrated the first in vivo MRI blood-brain barrier breakdown in cerebral malaria.

Researchers applied multimodal MR techniques in mice, including diffusion, perfusion, MR angiography, and MR spectroscopy, to reveal vascular damage such as blood-brain barrier disruption and hemorrhages attributable to inflammatory processes. The study appeared in the August 10 issue of the Journal of Neuroscience.

The authors found major edema formation as well as reduced brain perfusion, accompanied by an ischemic metabolic profile with reduction of high-energy phosphates and elevated brain lactate. MRA revealed compelling evidence for major perfusion dysfunction.

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