Abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA), defined as a 1.5-fold or greater increase in vessel diameter, leads to approximately 15,000 deaths per year in the United States. While the clinical morbidities are well-known, a detailed understanding of the underlying mechanisms that lead to initiation of the disease and progressive expansion of the vessel remain elusive. Murine AAA models have been developed to aid in better understanding the condition in humans. However, aneurysm research in mice to date has been limited to assessment of vessel growth by invasive or 2D ultrasound methods and has not considered wall dynamics. Thus, the purpose of this study was to characterize wall motion and aortic displacement in mouse aortas by developing high spatial and temporal resolution MR imaging and vessel quantification methods, with the goal of comparing the motion of healthy vasculature to the direction of AAA bulging.

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