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Release Date
December 2013

Expiration Date
January 1, 2019


Peter Caravan PhD
Assistant Professor of Radioloy
Harvard Medical School
Associate Director, Institute for Innovation in Imaging
Massachusetts General Hospital

Alexander Guimaraes, MD, PhD
Assistant Professor of Radiology
Harvard Medical School
Associate Radiologist
Associate Director of Abdominal Imaging Fellowship and
Medical Director, Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging
Massachusetts General Hospital


Equipment Requirements
PC: Win7/Win8, Pentium processor or faster, at least 2GB RAM, Internet Explorer version 10/11, Mozilla FireFox version 33.0.

MAC: OS version 10.8/10.9, Intel processor, at least 2GB RAM, Safari version 6.2, FireFox 33.0


MRI for Technologists:
Gadolinium-based Contrast Agents: Physicochemical Properties and Applications

This course expires January 1st, 2019

If you want credit, this course must be completed (i.e. view course content (PDF file), pass the posttest, AND print the certificate) by no later than December 31st, 2018

Please note, after this course has expired, no aspect of the course will be accessible, including the course text (PDF file)

Format: Online Course
Credit: 1.5 ARRT Category A+
Tuition: $15  Special Sale: $7.50
Certificates of Credit accepted by ARMRIT

MRI for Technologists is a training program designed to meet the needs of radiologic technologists entering or working in the MRI field. These units are designed to augment classroom instruction and on-site training for radiologic technology students and professionals planning to take the review board examinations, as well as to provide a review for those looking to refresh their knowledge base in MR imaging.

The skill of the technologist is the single most important factor in obtaining good quality diagnostic images. A successful MRI examination is the culmination of many factors under the direct control of the technologist.

MRI for Technologists: Gadolinium-based Contrast Agents: Physicochemical Properties and Applications introduces the learner to the chemical properties of the nine currently FDA-approved MRI contrast agents, as well as why the physical characteristics of gadolinium make this rare earth metal ideal for use as an MRI contrast agent. The attributes of thermodynamics and kinetics are visualized to demonstrate the relationship between the gadolinium ion and its chelates. The critical concept of relaxivity is explained as well as its impact on image quality. Differences between older and new GBCAs will be discussed, their safety profiles reviewed, and imaging applications for each agent explained. Acute and delayed reactions to GBCAs are addressed, including clinical management of minor to serious adverse events.

After completing this educational material, the reader will be able to:

  • Describe the role of gadolinium-based contrast agents (GBCAs) in visualization of anatomy and differentiation of pathology from normal tissue
  • Define the physicochemical similarities and differences between first generation and second generation GBCAs
  • Explain the concept of relaxivity and how this chemical characteristic affects image quality
  • Discuss how thermodynamic stability and kinetics affect the chemical structure and safety profiles of different GBCAs
  • Explain patient assessment and management in the event of an acute or delayed reaction to the intravenous administration of a gadolinium-based contrast agent

This program has been approved by the American Society of Radiologic Technologists (ASRT) for 1.5 hours of ARRT Category A+ continuing education credit.

Tuition for this course includes:

  • Downloadable course content
  • Unlimited access to the course
  • Certificate of Credit

ICPME accepts American Express, MasterCard, and Visa.
Please note: tuition payments are non-refundable.

How to Enroll and Participate
Time to complete this activity is 1.5 hours.

  • Click ENROLL NOW, CONTINUE through the shopping cart, CONFIRM ORDER, and ACCESS COURSE NOW.
  • Once you are enrolled, you can return to this course anytime by logging to your account at
  • Click on MY ACCOUNT, then click on the course title. 

How to Receive Credit
Your online account with ICPME serves as a permanent record of credit certificates earned through

  • Login to your account at
  • Read the course content.
  • After viewing the course content, login to your account at, click on MY ACCOUNT, and click on the Session title.   
  • From the course home page, click the buttons for POSTTEST and for EVALUATION.
  • A passing grade of at least 75% is required to receive credit. You may take the test up to three times.
  • Upon receipt of a passing grade, you will be able to print a certificate of credit from your account at


Peter Caravan Ph.D.
Dr. Caravan received his BSc with honors from Acadia University and his PhD in chemistry from the University of British Columbia. His post-doctoral research was performed at Université de Lausanne.

Dr. Caravan has more than 15 years of academic and industrial experience in the design, synthesis, and evaluation of targeted imaging probes. Before joining Harvard Medical School and MGH, Dr. Caravan spent several years at Epix Pharmaceuticals developing tissue-specific MRI contrast agents and was ultimately responsible for all contrast agent research. He has published over 90 peer-reviewed articles on the chemistry, biophysics, and applications of imaging probes.

Dr. Caravan has contributed a highly cited review (>2000 citations) on the chemistry of gadolinium-based contrast agents as well as written several book chapters on the properties and applications of contrast agents.

Alexander Guimaraes, MD
Dr. Guimaraes received his MD at Harvard Medicine School and PhD at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Both his radiology residency and fellowship were completed at Massachusetts General Hospital.

Dr. Guimaraes specializes in the both the clinical and research aspects of gastrointestinal cancers, including liver and pancreatic cancer.

His research interests are developing, analyzing, and translating novel magnetic resonance pulse sequence paradigms and applying novel targeted contrast agents for the goal of better means of quantifying angiogenesis and other relevant biomarkers in both cancer models and in humans undergoing clinical trials. These interests stem from his scientific background in magnetic resonance imaging pulse sequence design and clinical background in abdominal imaging.

Dr. Guimaraes recently joined the Center for Molecular Imaging Research (CMIR) as a clinical investigator and a member of both the mouse imaging programs and clinical discovery programs. This has afforded him the unique opportunity to apply and translate novel targeted contrast agents and to develop and translate novel pulse sequence algorithms from animal models to humans suffering with cancer.

Our thanks to Tom Schrack, BS, ARMRIT, Manager, MR Education and Technical Development, Fairfax Radiological Consultants in Fairfax, VA for his review of this material.

For questions regarding this program, please contact ICPME:
Phone: 607-257-5860




Participants have an implied responsibility to use the newly acquired information to enhance patient outcomes and their own professional development. The information presented in this activity is not meant to serve as a guideline for patient management. Any procedures, medications, or other courses of diagnosis or treatment discussed or suggested in this activity should not be used by clinicians without evaluation of their patient’s conditions and possible contraindications on dangers in use, review of any applicable manufacturer’s product information, and comparison with recommendations of other authorities.