Scientific article
Open access

Generic acquisition protocol for quantitative MRI of the spinal cord

ContributorsCohen-Adad, Julienorcid; Alonso-Ortiz, Eva; Abramovic, Mihael; Arneitz, Carina; Atcheson, Nicoleorcid; Barlow, Laura; Barry, Robert L.; Barth, Markusorcid; Battiston, Marco; Büchel, Christian; Budde, Matthew; Callot, Virginieorcid; Combes, Anna J. E.orcid; De Leener, Benjamin; Descoteaux, Maxime; de Sousa, Paulo Loureiroorcid; Dostál, Marekorcid; Doyon, Julien; Dvorak, Adamorcid; Eippert, Falk; Epperson, Karla R.; Epperson, Kevin S.; Freund, Patrick; Finsterbusch, Jürgen; Foias, Alexandru; Fratini, Michela; Fukunaga, Issei; Wheeler-Kingshott, Claudia A. M. Gandini; Germani, Giancarlo; Gilbert, Guillaume; Giove, Federicoorcid; Gros, Charleyorcid; Grussu, Francesco; Hagiwara, Akifumiorcid; Henry, Pierre-Gilles; Horák, Tomáš; Hori, Masaakiorcid; Joers, Jamesorcid; Kamiya, Kouhei; Karbasforoushan, Halehorcid; Keřkovský, Miloš; Khatibi, Aliorcid; Kim, Joo-Won; Kinany, Nawal; Kitzler, Hagen; Kolind, Shannon; Kong, Yazhuoorcid; Kudlička, Petrorcid; Kuntke, Paul; Kurniawan, Nyoman D.orcid; Kusmia, Slawomirorcid; Labounek, Renéorcid; Laganà, Maria Marcellaorcid; Laule, Cornelia; Law, Christine S.orcid; Lenglet, Christophe; Leutritz, Tobiasorcid; Liu, Yaou; Llufriu, Sara; Mackey, Seanorcid; Martinez-Heras, Eloyorcid; Mattera, Loan; Nestrasil, Igororcid; O’Grady, Kristin P.orcid; Papinutto, Nico; Papp, Danielorcid; Pareto, Deborahorcid; Parrish, Todd B.; Pichiecchio, Annaorcid; Prados, Ferranorcid; Rovira, Àlex; Ruitenberg, Marc J.; Samson, Rebecca S.; Savini, Giovanniorcid; Seif, Maryam; Seifert, Alan C.; Smith, Alex K.; Smith, Seth A.; Smith, Zachary A.; Solana, Elisabeth; Suzuki, Yuichi; Tackley, Georgeorcid; Tinnermann, Alexandra; Valošek, Janorcid; Van De Ville, Dimitriorcid; Yiannakas, Marios C.; Weber, Kenneth A.; Weiskopf, Nikolausorcid; Wise, Richard G.; Wyss, Patrik O.; Xu, Junqianorcid
Published inNature protocols, vol. 16, no. 10, p. 4611-4632
Publication date2021-10
First online date2021-08-16

Quantitative spinal cord (SC) magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) presents many challenges, including a lack of standardized imaging protocols. Here we present a prospectively harmonized quantitative MRI protocol, which we refer to as the spine generic protocol, for users of 3T MRI systems from the three main manufacturers: GE, Philips and Siemens. The protocol provides guidance for assessing SC macrostructural and microstructural integrity: T1-weighted and T2-weighted imaging for SC cross-sectional area computation, multi-echo gradient echo for gray matter cross-sectional area, and magnetization transfer and diffusion weighted imaging for assessing white matter microstructure. In a companion paper from the same authors, the spine generic protocol was used to acquire data across 42 centers in 260 healthy subjects. The key details of the spine generic protocol are also available in an open-access document that can be found at https://github.com/spine-generic/protocols. The protocol will serve as a starting point for researchers and clinicians implementing new SC imaging initiatives so that, in the future, inclusion of the SC in neuroimaging protocols will be more common. The protocol could be implemented by any trained MR technician or by a researcher/clinician familiar with MRI acquisition.

  • Adult
  • Humans
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Neuroimaging
  • Spinal Cord
Citation (ISO format)
COHEN-ADAD, Julien et al. Generic acquisition protocol for quantitative MRI of the spinal cord. In: Nature protocols, 2021, vol. 16, n° 10, p. 4611–4632. doi: 10.1038/s41596-021-00588-0
Main files (2)
Article (Published version)
Article (Accepted version) - PMC author manuscript
Secondary files (1)
ISSN of the journal1750-2799

Technical informations

Creation10/30/2022 3:48:36 PM
First validation05/16/2023 5:42:57 PM
Update time05/16/2023 5:42:57 PM
Status update05/16/2023 5:42:57 PM
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