Intravascular delivery of hyperpolarized129Xenon forin vivo MRI
The nuclear polarization of129Xe and3He can be enhanced by several orders of magnitude by using optical pumping techniques, thus allowing NMR detection of xenon and helium in very low concentrations. The benefits of optically enhanced magnetic resonance (MR) are already exploited in MR imaging of the lungs using optically polarized3He. The high solubility of xenon in blood and lipids suggests a variety ofin vivo MR applications, for instance perfusion measurements or functional MR studies. This article reviews some current work directed towards delivery of optically polarized xenon forin vivo MR applications.