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Cardiovascular magnetic resonance imaging: emerging techniques and applications
  1. Amrit Chowdhary1,
  2. Pankaj Garg2,
  3. Arka Das1,
  4. Muhummad Sohaib Nazir3,
  5. Sven Plein1,3
  1. 1 Leeds Institute of Cardiovascular and Metabolic Medicine, University of Leeds, Leeds, West Yorkshire, UK
  2. 2 Cardiovascular and Metabolic Medicine Group, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK
  3. 3 School of Biomedical Engineering and Imaging Sciences, King's College London, London, UK
  1. Correspondence to Prof Sven Plein, Leeds, Yorkshire, UK; s.plein{at}


This review gives examples of emerging cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) techniques and applications that have the potential to transition from research to clinical application in the near future. Four-dimensional flow CMR (4D-flow CMR) allows time-resolved three-directional, three-dimensional (3D) velocity-encoded phase-contrast imaging for 3D visualisation and quantification of valvular or intracavity flow. Acquisition times of under 10 min are achievable for a whole heart multidirectional data set and commercial software packages are now available for data analysis, making 4D-flow CMR feasible for inclusion in clinical imaging protocols. Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) is based on the measurement of molecular water diffusion and uses contrasting behaviour in the presence and absence of boundaries to infer tissue structure. Cardiac DTI is capable of non-invasively phenotyping the 3D micro-architecture within a few minutes, facilitating transition of the method to clinical protocols. Hybrid positron emission tomography-magnetic resonance (PET-MR) provides quantitative PET measures of biological and pathological processes of the heart combined with anatomical, morphological and functional CMR imaging. Cardiac PET-MR offers opportunities in ischaemic, inflammatory and infiltrative heart disease.

  • cardiac magnetic resonance (CMR) imaging
  • cardiac imaging and diagnostics
  • advanced cardiac imaging
  • positron emission tomographic (PET) imaging

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  • Twitter @DrAChowdhary, @sohaibnazir, @Sven Plein

  • Collaborators Christopher I Kelly.

  • Contributors All authors have contributed to literature search and writing of the manuscript.

  • Funding SP is funded by a British Heart Foundation Chair (CH/16/2/32089).

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient and public involvement Patients and/or the public were not involved in the design, or conduct, or reporting, or dissemination plans of this research.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; externally peer reviewed.