Myocardial contrast echocardiography in mice: Technical and physiological aspects

Melissa Verkaik, Erik M. van Poelgeest, Rick F.J. Kwekkeboom, Piet M. ter Wee, Charissa E. van den Brom, Marc G. Vervloet, Etto C. Eringa

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleAcademicpeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


Myocardial contrast echocardiography (MCE) offers the opportunity to study myocardial perfusion defects in mice in detail. The value of MCE compared with single-photon emission computed tomography, positron emission tomography, and computed tomography consists of high spatial resolution, the possibility of quantification of blood volume, and relatively low costs. Nevertheless, a number of technical and physiological aspects should be considered to ensure reproducibility among research groups. The aim of this overview is to describe technical aspects of MCE and the physiological parameters that influence myocardial perfusion data obtained with this technique. First, technical aspects of MCE discussed in this technical review are logarithmic compression of ultrasound data by ultrasound systems, saturation of the contrast signal, and acquisition of images during different phases of the cardiac cycle. Second, physiological aspects of myocardial perfusion that are affected by the experimental design are discussed, including the anesthesia regimen, systemic cardiovascular effects of vasoactive agents used, and fluctuations in body temperature that alter myocardial perfusion. When these technical and physiological aspects of MCE are taken into account and adequately standardized, MCE is an easily accessible technique for mice that can be used to study the control of myocardial perfusion by a wide range of factors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)H381-H391
JournalAmerican journal of physiology. Heart and circulatory physiology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2018


  • Mice
  • Microbubbles
  • Myocardial contrast echocardiography
  • Myocardial perfusion

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