This study tested whether Gd-BOPTA/Dimeg or Gd-DTPA exerts greater relaxation enhancement for blood and reperfused infarcted myocardium. Relaxivity of Gd-BOPTA is increased by weak binding to serum albumin. Thirty-six rats were subjected to reperfused infarction before contrast (doses = 0.05, 0.1, and 0.2 mmol/kg). delta R1 was repeatedly measured over 30 min. Gd-BOPTA caused greater delta R1 for blood and myocardium than did Gd-DTPA; clearance of both agents from normal- and infarcted myocardium was similar to blood clearance; plots of delta R1 myocardium/delta R1 blood showed equilibrium phase contrast distribution. Fractional contrast agent distribution volumes were approximately 0.24 for both agents in normal myocardium, 0.98 and 1.6 for Gd-DTPA and Gd-BOPTA, respectively, in reperfused infarction. The high value for Gd-BOPTPA was ascribed to greater relaxivity in infarction versus blood. It was concluded that Gd-BOPTA/Dimeg causes a greater delta R1 than Gd-DTPA in regions which contain serum albumin.