Mayo Clinic researchers are working to expand the range of tissues and organs that can be noninvasively imaged using MRE. Conditions for which MRE might someday be used include:

  • Breast cancer. Researchers are working on using MRE to distinguish benign from cancerous tumors.
  • Musculoskeletal disease. Researchers are using MRE to measure the stiffness of muscle as a way to noninvasively assess muscle in normal and disease states.
  • Alzheimer's disease. MRE has potential to show changes in brain mechanical properties, possibly leading to new methods for diagnosing Alzheimer's disease at an earlier stage.
  • Brain tumors. Mayo researchers are testing MRE for evaluating brain tumors, as an aid to surgical planning.
  • Heart disease. Mayo investigators have adapted MRE to assess the mechanical properties of the heart. This technology has potential to help in diagnosis of heart failure.
  • Kidney disease. MRE may provide new ways to diagnose kidney fibrosis and to assess disease progression.

Read more about research in the Mayo Clinic Magnetic Resonance Imaging Laboratory.


See a list of publications by Mayo doctors on magnetic resonance elastography on PubMed, a service of the National Library of Medicine.

Research Profiles

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Aug. 02, 2017
  1. Zhang N, et al. Quantification of regional aortic stiffness using MR elastography: A phantom and ex-vivo porcine aorta study. Magnetic Resonance Imaging. 2016;34:91.
  2. Tang A, et al. Ultrasound elastography and MR elastography for assessing liver fibrosis: Part 2, diagnostic performance, confounders, and future directions. American Journal of Roentgenology. 2015;205:33.
  3. Tang A, et al. Ultrasound elastography and MR elastography for assessing liver fibrosis: Part 1, principles and techniques. American Journal of Roentgenology. 2015;205:22.
  4. Hiscox LV, et al. Magnetic resonance elastography (MRE) of the human brain: Technique, findings and clinical applications. Physics in Medicine & Biology. 2016;61:R401.
  5. Winn RH. Physiologic evaluation of the brain with magnetic resonance imaging. In: Youmans and Winn Neurological Surgery. 7th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Elsevier, 2017. Accessed April 4, 2017.
  6. Wagner M. Technical failure of MR elastography examinations of the liver: Experience from a large single-center study. Radiology. In press. Accessed April 4, 2017.
  7. Huber A, et al. State-of-the-art imaging of liver fibrosis and cirrhosis: A comprehensive review of current applications and future perspectives. European Journal of Radiology Open. 2015: 90.
  8. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) safety. Accessed Apr. 13, 2017.
  9. Low G, et al. General review of magnetic resonance elastography. World Journal of Radiology. 2016;8:59.
  10. Brown A. Decision Support System. Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. March 22, 2016.