In vivo MRI virtual colonography in a mouse model of colon cancer.

Author(s): Ileva LV,  Bernardo M,  Young MR,  Riffle LA,  Tatum JL,  Kalen JD,  Choyke PL

Journal: Nat Protoc

Date: 2014 Nov

Major Program(s) or Research Group(s): CBRG

PubMed ID: 25340441

PMC ID: not available

Abstract: We have developed a reliable noninvasive method for monitoring colonic tumors and mucosal inflammation in a mouse model of colon cancer using magnetic resonance colonography (MRC). After a mild cleansing enema, the colon is filled with Fluorinert, a perfluorinated liquid that does not produce a proton MR signal. The mouse is placed in a dedicated volume MR receiver coil, and high-resolution images are acquired in three planes. The Fluorinert enema distends the mouse colon, creating an artifact-free black homogeneous background, allowing clear delineation of the inflamed colonic wall and visualization of luminal tumors in various stages of development. A gadolinium-based contrast agent can be administered i.v. to the animal to detect mural inflammation or tumor vascularity. This technique is useful for serial monitoring of the effects of preventive or therapeutic strategies on tumor development without killing the animal or requiring invasive endoscopies. The animal preparation and imaging can be completed in ∼1.5 h.