Learning difficult lesions

Using ultra-high-field magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to track the emergence of scars in the cortical grey matter of the brain is a powerful way to predict the progress of multiple sclerosis (MS), research has revealed.

Scientists led by Caterina Mainero from Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, US, tracked MS patients using a 7-Tesla (T) MRI scanner – a powerful device with more than double the grunt of the more commonly available machines.

MS is a disease of the immune system. Recent research showed that lesions in the gray matter of the outer layer of the brain develop before severe symptoms emerge. Monitoring their progress using non-invasive imaging, Mainero and colleagues realised, provided strong indications of how the disease would progress, allowing patients and clinicians to better decide treatment options.

The study is published in the journal Radiology.

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