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Even though low-field magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) remains widely used, it has some limitations preventing common use of particular MR methods, such as functional MPI (fMRI). This does not apply to the effects of alcohol or caffeine, as these substances influence the blood-oxygen-level-dependent (BOLD) signal. This paper focused on testing early effects of caffeine and alcohol on induced "BOLD" imaging on a modern low-field system. A study based on alcohol and caffeine consumption was performed on ten volunteers. The signal intensity variations caused by blood flow changes were observed in 5-min intervals in the skin surrounding dermal veins of the hand. The signal intensity variations were significant in the region of interest, with a subtracted venal signal 15 min after consumption of alcohol, and in caffeine case, the results were significant even sooner. A low-field system is feasible for imaging the acute hemodynamic response, thus caffeine and alcohol can be used to enhance low-field fMRI experiments without the pre-measurement delay. © 2012 Springer-Verlag.

Original publication




Journal article


Applied Magnetic Resonance

Publication Date





463 - 471