Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) provides many windows into the physiology of the brain, providing sensitive measures to follow nutrition interventions. Dr. Sutton discusses three particularly promising techniques—magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS), diffusion tensor imaging (DTI), and magnetic resonance elastography (MRE)—that allow researchers to monitor changes in brain metabolism, neuronal connectivity, and tissue structure. He states that MRS can be used to examine localized brain chemistry and metabolism, DTI to assess white matter axonal connectivity and integrity of the membranes and myelin, and MRE to provide information on the overall structural integrity of brain tissue. This multiparametric space, Dr. Sutton says, allows for specific physiological questions to be asked with respect to the impact of a nutrition intervention on the brain.
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