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The measurement of brain metabolism in vivo has been a major challenge in neuroscience research, and it is only in recent years with the advent of magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) methods that this has become possible. In this chapter, we discuss how 13C MRS in combination with 13C isotopically labeled substrates can be used to quantitatively measure the major pathways of brain energy metabolism and function, and how this can be exploited to gain insight into metabolic compartmentation and neuron-astrocyte interactions. Furthermore, we discuss the advances in our understanding of the relationship between glucose metabolism and neuronal function that these approaches have enabled. We also briefly discuss alternatives to direct 13C MRS using indirect 13C detection through coupled protons (1H-[13C] MRS) and 15N MRS. We will discuss both initial work in animals in which the use of MRS methods for measurement of neuroenergetics and neurotransmission were validated, and also their more recent translation to humans. © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Original publication





Book title

Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy: Tools for Neuroscience Research and Emerging Clinical Applications

Publication Date



274 - 288