Magnetic Resonance Imaging of Metastases in Xenograft Mouse Models of Cancer

  • Kersten Peldschus
  • Harald Ittrich
Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology book series (MIMB, volume 1070)


Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of small animals has emerged as a valuable tool to noninvasively monitor tumor growth in mouse models of cancer. However, imaging of metastases in mouse models is difficult due to the need for high spatial resolution. We have demonstrated MRI of metastases in the liver, brain, adrenal glands, and lymph nodes in different xenograft mouse models of cancer. MRI of mice was performed with a clinical 3.0 T magnetic resonance scanner and a commercially available small-animal receiver coil. The imaging protocol consisted of T1- and T2-weighted fat-saturated spin echo sequences with a spatial resolution of 200 μm × 200 μm × 500 μm. Total acquisition time was 30 min per mouse. The technique allowed for repetitive examinations of larger animal cohorts to observe the development of metastases.

Key words

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) Xenograft mouse models Small-animal imaging Noninvasive visualization Iron oxide-based contrast agents 



The authors would like to thank Professor Udo Schumacher, Dr. Anka Thies, and Dr. Daniel Benten for providing mouse models with metastases and helpful discussions. Furthermore, Johannes Salamon is acknowledged for technical assistance and image processing.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kersten Peldschus
    • 1
  • Harald Ittrich
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Diagnostic and Interventional RadiologyUniversity Medical Center Hamburg-EppendorfHamburgGermany

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