Phenols as Diamagnetic T2-Exchange Magnetic Resonance Imaging Contrast Agents

Jia Zhang, Yuguo Li, Stephanie Slania, Nirbhay N. Yadav, Jing Liu, Rongfu Wang, Jianhua Zhang, Martin G. Pomper, Peter C. van Zijl, Xing Yang, Guanshu Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Although T2-exchange (T2ex) NMR phenomena have been known for decades, there has been a resurgence of interest to develop T2ex MRI contrast agents. One indispensable advantage of T2ex MR agents is the possibility of using non-toxic and/or bio-compatible diamagnetic compounds with intermediate exchangeable protons. Herein a library of phenol-based compounds is screened and their T2ex contrast (exchange relaxivity, r2ex) at 9.4 T determined. The T2ex contrast of phenol protons allows direct detection by MRI at a millimolar concentration level. The effect of chemical modification of the phenol on the T2ex MRI contrast through modulation of exchange rate and chemical shift was also studied and provides a guideline for use of endogenous and exogenous phenols for T2ex MRI contrast. As a proof-of-principle application, phenol T2ex contrast can be used to detect enzyme activity in a tyrosinase-catalyzed catechol oxidation reaction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1259-1263
Number of pages5
JournalChemistry - A European Journal
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jan 26 2018


  • T-exchange
  • contrast agents
  • magnetic resonance imaging
  • phenols
  • tyrosinase

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Organic Chemistry


Dive into the research topics of 'Phenols as Diamagnetic T2-Exchange Magnetic Resonance Imaging Contrast Agents'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this