Cortical Lesions in Multiple Sclerosis Tracked With 7.0-T MRI

April 9, 2019 (HealthDay News) 

Development of cortical lesions surpassed that of white matter lesions, linked to neurologic disability

Cortical lesion development surpasses white matter lesion accrual in multiple sclerosis (MS), according to a study published online April 9 in Radiology.

Constantina A. Treaba, M.D., Ph.D., from Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, and colleagues recruited 20 participants with relapsing-remitting MS, 13 with secondary progressive MS, and 10 age-matched healthy controls from 2010 to 2016. Participants underwent 7.0-T magnetic resonance imaging T2*-weighted gradient-echo imaging for cortical and white matter lesion segmentation and 3.0-T T1-weighted imaging for cortical surface reconstruction and cortical thickness estimation.

The researchers found that 81 percent of the 31 patients developed new cortical lesions per year (intracortical versus leukocortical, 1.3 ± 1.7 versus 0.7 ± 1.9), surpassing accrual of white matter lesions (cortical versus white matter, 2.0 ± 2.8 versus 0.7 ± 0.6). Participants with secondary progressive MS had greater cortical lesion accrual than those with relapsing-remitting MS (3.6 ± 4.2 versus 1.1 ± 0.9 lesions/year), with preferential localization in sulci. Baseline Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS) and EDSS changes at follow-up were independently predicted by total cortical lesion volume.

“The rate of cortical lesion accumulation in MS patients is higher at 7.0-T compared with previous studies at lower field strength,” the authors write. “Given that this accumulation is associated with progression of neurologic disability, its quantification might represent a useful tool for improving the monitoring of disease burden evolution.”

Several authors disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry.

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