Our purpose was to investigate the potential of an experimental animal coil using a commercial MRI unit to delineate the anatomical structure of the human brain stem. Three formaldehyde-fixed brain-stem specimens were examined by MRI and sectioned perpendicular to their longitudinal axis. The images were compared with gross anatomy and myelin-stained histological sections. Fibre tracts and nuclei which were not evident on examination of the unstained specimen were readily identified by MRI. Due to its inherent grey/white matter contrast, MRI with a high-resolution coil delineates anatomical structures in a way comparable to the myelin-stained histological sections. However, pigmented structures, readily visible on examination of the unstained specimen were discernible on neither MRI nor on myelin-stained sections. The excellent anatomical detail and grey/white matter contrast provided by these images could make MRI a useful adjunct to the pathologist investigating brain disease.
- Brain stem
- Magnetic resonance imaging, experimental
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
- Clinical Neurology
- Radiological and Ultrasound Technology