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Abstract #4001

Intervertebral disc degeneration and changes in solute transport mechanisms in disc endplates studied by DCE-MRI

L.Tugan Muftuler 1 , Joshua J. Jarman 2 , Hon J. Yu 3 , Dennis J. Maiman 4 , and Vance O. Gardner 5

1 Department of Neurosurgery and Center for Imaging Research, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI, United States, 2 Medical college of Wisconsin, WI, United States, 3 Radiological Sciences, University of California, Irvine, CA, United States, 4 Department of Neurosurgery, Medical college of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI, United States, 5 Orthopedic Research Institute of California, CA, United States

Disruption of nutrient delivery through the endplates of intervertebral discs could be a factor initiating or accelerating the degeneration processes. Thus, our goal was to develop a high spatial resolution Dynamic Contrast Enhanced MRI (DCE-MRI) protocol to study solute transport mechanisms in the cartilaginous endplates and subchondral bone of degenerating discs. Results indicate that the cracks and fissures developing in the subchondral bone of degenerating discs lead to increased DCE-MRI enhancement. Furthermore, caudal endplates showed higher enhancement than cranial endplates and the difference increased at lower lumbar levels.

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