The application of techniques based on in vivo magnetic resonance to the study of leukodystrophies is evaluated. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), the most important neuroimaging modality for patients with leukodystrophies, has proven invaluable for the detection of the extent and etiology of white-matter involvement, diagnosis, and monitoring of disease progression. Proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy, which can detect several brain metabolites, including those related to axonal function and myelination, can provide additional diagnostic and prognostic information and, in some cases, allows a rare insight into the biochemical pathology of leukodystrophies. The potential of other advanced magnetic resonance techniques, including diffusion tensor imaging, magnetization transfer contrast, and molecular imaging, is also discussed. In the future, anatomic and physiologic magnetic resonance techniques are expected to be integrated into a single examination that will provide a detailed characterization of white-matter diseases in children.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
- Clinical Neurology