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Magnetic Resonance Specimen Evaluation Using Multiple Pulse Field Gradient Sequences

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Researchers at the NICHD seek licensing and/or co-development research collaborations for an MRI method that is based on the measurement and acquisition of multiple pulsed field gradient (m-PFG) rather than the previously used single pulsed field gradient (s-PFG) MRI sequences.
NIH Reference Number
Product Type
  • Multiple Pulsed Field Gradient, double PFG, d-PFG, Axon diameter distribution, MRI Diagnostic
Collaboration Opportunity
This invention is available for licensing and co-development.
Description of Technology

Researchers at the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) developed an MRI-method that is based on the acquisition of multiple pulsed field gradient (m-PFG) rather than single-pulsed field gradient (s-PFG) MRI sequences. In particular, double PFG (dPFG) MRI sequences offer higher sensitivity and greater robustness, as they are more sensitive to the effects of “restriction;” i.e., to water trapped within the axon’s intracellular space, and thus to the diameter of the axons. Thus, it renders the MRI data more sensitive to “pore size” and “pore shape,” making the measurement of the average axon diameter (AAD), and the axon diameter distribution (ADD) more sensitive and accurate. Moreover, measurements using the multiple-PFG sequence can be performed readily at ‘low b” or “low q” – making it biologically relevant and clinically feasible. 

Potential Commercial Applications
  • In vivo MRI of humans and animals;
  • Drug development;
  • Material Science;
  • Food processing.
Competitive Advantages
  • Non-invasive, painless, in vivo measurement of tissue microstructure and the microenvironment;
  • Contrast agents not required;
  • Modest data requirements allow for scans to be performed in a clinically feasible time-frame.
Development Stage
Patent Status
  • U.S. Patent Issued: U.S. Patent Number 8,704,515, Filed 11 Aug 2009, Issued 22 Apr 2014
  • U.S. Patent Filed: U.S. Patent Application Number
Therapeutic Area
Thursday, November 2, 2017