Spectral analysis for evaluation of myocardial tracers for medical
Kinetic analysis of dynamic tracer data is performed with the goal of evaluating myocardial radiotracers for cardiac nuclear medicine imaging. Data from experiments utilizing the isolated rabbit heart model are acquired by sampling the venous blood after introduction of a tracer of interest and a reference tracer. We have taken the approach that the kinetics are properly characterized by an impulse response function which describes the difference between the reference molecule (which does not leave the vasculature) and the molecule of interest which is transported across the capillary boundary and is made available to the cell. Using this formalism we can model the appearance of the tracer of interest in the venous output of the heart as a convolution of the appearance of the reference tracer with the impulse response. In this work we parameterize the impulse response function as the sum of a large number of exponential functions whose predetermined decay constants form a spectrum, and each is required only to have a nonnegative coefficient. This approach, called spectral analysis, has the advantage that it allows conventional compartmental analysis without prior knowledge of the number of compartments which the physiology may require or which the data will support.