A modified rabbit model of reperfused myocardial infarction for cardiac MR imaging research

  • Yuanbo Feng
  • Yi Xie
  • Huaijun Wang
  • Feng Chen
  • Yuxiang Ye
  • Lixin Jin
  • Guy Marchal
  • Yicheng Ni
Original Paper


We sought to obtain a rabbit myocardial infarction (MI) model for research with cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (cMRI) by overcoming a few technical difficulties. A novel endotracheal method was developed for intubation and ventilation. Fourteen rabbits were divided into group-1 (= 8) with open-chest occlusion of left circumflex coronary artery and closed-chest reperfusion, and group-2 (n = 6) of non-ischemic control; and received ECG-triggered cMRI with delayed contrast enhancement (DE-cMRI) at a 1.5 T clinical scanner. The MI areas in group-1 were morphometrically compared between DE-cMRI and histochemically stained specimens. Left ventricular (LV) functions were compared between two groups.The success rate of intubation and reperfused MI was 8/8 and 6/8, respectively. Global and regional LV functions significantly decreased in group-1 as evidenced by significant hypokinesis of lateral LV-wall and wall thickening (< 0.001). Mean MI-area was 19.41 ± 21.92% on DE-cMRI and 19.10 ± 22.61% with histochemical staining (r = 0.985). Global MI-volume was 17.92 ± 7.42% on DE-cMRI and 16.62 ± 7.16% with histochemistry (r = 0.994). The usefulness of this model was successfully tested for assessing a new contrast agent. The present rabbit MI model may offer a practical platform for more translational research using clinical MRI-facilities.


ECG Modified model MRI Myocardial infarction Rabbit Reperfusion 



We are grateful to Shanghai Chemrole Co., Ltd, China for providing batches of nonporphyrin NACAs in our in vivo testing and to RF Therapeutics Inc., Canada for chemical refinement of NACAs. This study is jointly supported by the research funds of OT/96/33 and OT/06/70 from K. U. Leuven, Belgium; FWO G.0247.05, FWO G.0257.05 and FWO major financing (ZWAP/05/018) from Flemish government of Belgium; and a EU project Asia-Link CfP 2006-EuropeAid/123738/C/ACT/Multi-Proposal No. 128-498/111.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, B.V. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yuanbo Feng
    • 1
  • Yi Xie
    • 2
  • Huaijun Wang
    • 1
  • Feng Chen
    • 1
  • Yuxiang Ye
    • 1
  • Lixin Jin
    • 1
  • Guy Marchal
    • 1
  • Yicheng Ni
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of RadiologyUniversity Hospitals, Catholic University of LeuvenLeuvenBelgium
  2. 2.Faculty of EngineeringUniversity of LeuvenLeuvenBelgium

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