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Abstract #4689

Extremely slow water diffusion in rodent brain as a intracellular biomarker for aging

SHU-JUAN FAN 1,2 , Peng CAO 1,2 , Wenwen A. Han 1,2 , and Ed Wu 1,2

1 Laboratory of Biomedical Imaging and Signal Processing, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, Hong Kong, SAR, China, 2 Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, Hong Kong, SAR, China

Extremely slow water diffusion at ultrahigh b values in brain is thought to be related to restricted water diffusion in the nerve fibers and transmembrane water flux. With diffusion-weighted MRS, this study demonstrated a decrease of slow water ADC and increase of its fraction with aging, and the gradual development of the slow-diffusion water pool during postnatal development. These results were potentially related to the degenerative changes in nerve fiber during aging and the development of axonal membranes and myelin sheath during early life, supporting slow water diffusion as an intracellular biomarker for assessing aging-related structural brain changes.

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