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C Prünte, J Flammer, R Markstein, M Rudin; Quantification of optic nerve blood flow changes using magnetic resonance imaging.. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 1995;36(1):247-251.
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PURPOSE: To evaluate the possibilities of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) for quantification of pharmacologically induced changes in optic nerve microcirculation. METHOD: T2-weighted MRI sequences were used to image the eye, optic nerve, and frontal cortex in rats. Two sets of control images before and one set during Gd (DTPA) infusion were recorded. Blood flow values for two regions of the optic nerve (an anterior part, including the optic nerve head, and a more posterior part) and the frontal cortex were calculated by image analysis from the change in signal intensity, as already reported for cerebral blood flow. For each rat, a control experiment before drug administration and a second experiment 30 minutes after subcutaneous injection of either placebo (n = 7), timolol (n = 7), or SDZ GLC-756, a dopamine D-1 antagonist and D-2 agonist (n = 7), were carried out in a double-blind fashion. RESULTS: Mean basal blood flow values were found between 29.4 and 45.6 ml/100 g per minute in the anterior part of the optic nerve, 38.3 and 42.9 ml/100 g per minute in the posterior part of the optic nerve, and 68.0 and 75.0 ml/100 g per minute in the frontal cortex. Placebo and timolol did not cause significant changes. SDZ GLC-756 significantly increased blood flow by 238% +/- 65% in the anterior part and by 87% +/- 40% in the posterior part of the optic nerve. CONCLUSIONS: These results suggest that MRI provides quantification of optic nerve blood flow and that dopaminergic substances increase optic nerve blood flow.
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