Blood-brain barrier permeability imaging using perfusion computed tomography
The blood-brain barrier represents the selective diffusion barrier at the level of the cerebral microvasculare endothelium. Other functions of blood-brain barrier include transport, signaling and osmoregulation. Interactions of endothelial cells with surrounding astrocytes, pericytes and neurons is crucial to their development, structural integrity and function. Disfunctional blood-brain barrier has been associated with pathologies such as acute stroke, tumours, inflammatory and neurodegenerative diseases. Blood-brain barrier permeability can be evaluated in vivo by perfusion computed tomography - an efficient diagnostic method that involves the sequential acquisition of tomographic images during the intravenous administration of iodinated contrast material. The major clinical applications of perfusion computed tomography are in acute stroke and in brain tumour imaging.