Arterial wall perfusion measured with photon counting spectral X-ray CT

Steven M. Jorgensen, Mark J. Korinek, Andrew J. Vercnocke, Jill L. Anderson, Ahmed Halaweish, Shuai Leng, Cynthia H. McCollough, Erik L. Ritman

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

9 Scopus citations


Early atherosclerosis changes perfusion of the arterial wall due to localized proliferation of the vasa vasorum. When contrast agent passes through the artery, some enters the vasa vasorum and increases radiopacity of the arterial wall. Technical challenges to detecting changes in vasa vasorum density include the thin arterial wall, partial volume averaging at the arterial lumen/wall interface and calcification within the wall. We used a photon-counting spectral CT scanner to study carotid arteries of anesthetized pigs and micro-CT of these arteries to quantify vasa vasorum density. The left carotid artery wall was injected with autologous blood to stimulate vasa vasorum angiogenesis. The scans were performed at 25-120 keV; the tube-current-time product was 550 mAs. A 60 mL bolus of iodine contrast agent was injected into the femoral vein at 5mL/s. Two seconds post injection, an axial scan was acquired at every 3 s over 60 s (i.e., 20 time points). Each time point acquired 28 contiguous transaxial slices with reconstructed voxels 0.16 × 0.16 × 1 mm3. Regions-of-interest in the outer 2/3 of the arterial wall and in the middle 2/3 of the lumen were drawn and their enhancements plotted versus time. Lumenal CT values peaked several seconds after injection and then returned towards baseline. Arterial wall CT values peaked concurrent to the lumen. The peak arterial wall enhancement in the left carotid arterial wall correlated with increased vasa vasorum density observed in micro-CT images of the isolated arteries.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationDevelopments in X-Ray Tomography X
EditorsGe Wang, Stuart R. Stock, Bert Muller
ISBN (Electronic)9781510603257
StatePublished - 2016
EventDevelopments in X-Ray Tomography X - San Diego, United States
Duration: Aug 29 2016Aug 31 2016

Publication series

NameProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
ISSN (Print)0277-786X
ISSN (Electronic)1996-756X


OtherDevelopments in X-Ray Tomography X
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Diego


  • X-ray photon-counting CT
  • arterial wall perfusion
  • intravascular contrast agent
  • spectral X-ray CT
  • vasa vasorum

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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