Molecular Imaging and Biology

, Volume 15, Issue 3, pp 245–249

1H–31P Soft-HSQC Pulse Sequence Specifically for Detecting Phosphomono- and Diesters in Biological Samples

Brief Article

DOI: 10.1007/s11307-012-0607-6

Cite this article as:
Mao, X., Jiang, B., Jiang, L. et al. Mol Imaging Biol (2013) 15: 245. doi:10.1007/s11307-012-0607-6



Phosphomono- and diesters (PME and PDE) are important metabolites that are potential biomarkers for a number of cancers. We designed a new NMR pulse sequence, i.e., 1H–31P soft-heteronuclear single quantum correlation (HSQC), specifically for noninvasively detecting PME and PDE in biological samples.


The nonselective 1H refocusing π pulses in the conventional heteronuclear single quantum correlation pulse sequence are replaced by selective π pulses. When the selective pulses are offset on the CH2O resonances, the homonuclear couplings between the NCH2 and CH2O protons are effectively removed, and the spectrum of PME and PDE is significantly enhanced.


The sensitivity of this pulse sequence has been demonstrated with milk and mouse brain samples. A soft-HSQC spectrum, where only PME and PDE signals appear, can be recorded from these biological samples in minutes with remarkably high signal-to-noise ratio.


This pulse sequence provides a new and quick method for in vivo studies of phosphorus metabolite in the human brain and other tissues for medical purposes.

Key words

31P MRS pulse sequence Soft-HSQC Selective refocusing Phosphoesters Fast detection Milk Mouse brain 

Copyright information

© World Molecular Imaging Society 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PharmacologyCase Western Reserve University School of MedicineClevelandUSA
  2. 2.State Key Laboratory of Magnetic Resonance and Atomic and Molecular Physics, Wuhan Institute of Physics and MathematicsThe Chinese Academy of SciencesWuhanChina

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