31P-MRS using visual stimulation protocols with different durations in healthy young adult subjects

F. R. Barreto, T. B. S. Costa, R. C. G. Landim, G. Castellano, C. E. G. Salmon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Phosphorus magnetic resonance spectroscopy (31P-MRS) combined with visual stimulation in functional experiments allows the non-invasive dynamic study of brain energy metabolism. 31P-MRS has been applied to several diseases and to healthy subjects, but works have shown variable findings and non-reproducible results, possibly caused by low numbers of subjects combined with different stimulation paradigms. In the present work, we used 31P-MRS at 3 T with two different visual stimulation protocols with different block duration (“short” and “long”) to evaluate metabolic changes under different workloads in 38 healthy subjects. We found a 15 % (short protocol—blocks of 1.5 min stimulation) and 3 % (long protocol—blocks of 5 min stimulation) increase in the inorganic phosphate (Pi) to α-adenosine triphosphate (α-ATP) ratio, and a 5 % (short protocol) and 2 % (long protocol) decrease in the nicotinamide adenine nucleotide (NADH + NAD+) to α-ATP ratio. The NADH + NAD+ results are, to the best of our knowledge, the first functional magnetic resonance spectroscopy in vivo assessment of these compounds, but their interpretation is difficult since they cannot be separately quantified at 3 T. Our results show that longer stimulations produce smaller concentration changes in Pi/α-ATP and (NADH + NAD+)/α-ATP ratios, which suggests a possible adaptation effect during longer stimulations that leads metabolic concentrations towards the initial equilibrium.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2343-2350
Number of pages8
JournalNeurochemical Research
Issue number12
Early online date17 Sept 2014
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2014


  • energy metabolism
  • inorganic phosphate
  • NADH
  • phosphorus magnetic resonance spectroscopy
  • visual stimulation

Cite this