Esben Thade Petersen



+45 3862 3326


Senior Researcher, Associate Professor

Research Interests

My main research area is brain perfusion and metabolism. The investigation of how the brain ensures sufficient supply of oxygen and nutrients in order to maintain homeostasis and investigating what goes wrong during disease, such as in dementia. During my PhD, I pioneered a technique based on the non-invasive arterial spin labeling (ASL) called Quantitative STAR labeling of Arterial Regions, or QUASAR. This innovative technique, for which I received the I.I. Rabi Basic Science “Young Investigator Award” in 2005, allow simultaneous acquisition of cerebral blood flow, arterial transit time and arterial blood volume. In addition, it introduced a completely new concept of model-free quantification for arterial spin labelling, all without the injection of a contrast agent. In my continued research, I have developed new techniques for measuring oxygen status of the brain. By combining blood flow and oxygen extraction, one can assess the oxygen consumption or cerebral metabolic rate of oxygen (CMRO2). These techniques have been applied in neonates, across a healthy ageing population as well as in patients with large vessel disease. More recently, I have put more efforts in exploiting the increased signal-to-noise available on 7-tesla MRI to boost the sensitivity of these sequences.

Research Groups

7 Tesla Group (Group Leader)
MR Physics

Curriculum Vitae



Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering, University of Aarhus, Denmark


M.Sc. in Biomedical Engineering, University of Aarhus, Denmark


B.Sc. in Electronic Engineering, Engineering College of Aarhus


2016 - Present

Associate Professor, DTU Electrical Engineering, Lyngby, Denmark

2014 - Present

Senior Researcher, 7 Tesla Group Leader, DRCMR, Hvidovre Hospital, University of Copenhagen, Denmark

2011 - 2014

Assistant Professor, Department of Radiology, University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht, The Netherlands

2009 - 2011

Research Fellow, Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) and National University of Singapore.

2004 - 2008

Research Fellow, National Neuroscience Institute, Singapore

2000 - 2001

CERN European Organisation for Nuclear Research, Switzerland


Bhogal AA, Philippens ME, Siero JC, Fisher JA, Petersen ET, Luijten PR, Hoogduin H., “Examining the regional and cerebral depth-dependent BOLD cerebrovascular reactivity response at 7T.” Neuroimage. 2015 Jul 1;114:239-48

De Vis JB, Zwanenburg JJ, van der Kleij LA, Spijkerman JM, Biessels GJ, Hendrikse J, Petersen ET. “Cerebrospinal fluid volumetric MRI mapping as a simple measurement for evaluating brain atrophy.” Eur Radiol. August 2015. doi:10.1007/s00330-015-3932-8.

Mutsaerts HJ, van Dalen JW, Heijtel DF, Groot PF, Majoie CB, Petersen ET, Richard E, Nederveen AJ., “Cerebral Perfusion Measurements in Elderly with Hypertension Using Arterial Spin Labeling.” PLoS One. 2015;10(8):e0133717. 

Simonis FF, Petersen ET, Lagendijk JJ, van den Berg CA., “Feasibility of measuring thermoregulation during RF heating of the human calf muscle using MR based methods.” Magn Reson Med. 2015 May 14. [Epub ahead of print]

Mutsaerts HJ, van Osch MJ, Zelaya FO, Wang DJ, Nordhøy W, Wang Y, Wastling S, Fernandez-Seara MA, Petersen ET, Pizzini FB, Fallatah S, Hendrikse J, Geier O, Günther M, Golay X, Nederveen AJ, Bjørnerud A, Groote IR., “Multi-vendor reliability of arterial spin labeling perfusion MRI using a near-identical sequence: implications for multi-center studies.” Neuroimage. 2015 Jun;113:143-52

De Vis JB, Hendrikse J, Bhogal A, Adams A, Kappelle LJ, Petersen ET., “Age-related changes in brain hemodynamics; A calibrated MRI study.” Hum Brain Mapp. 2015;36(10):3973-3987

Schalkx HJ, Petersen ET, Peters NH, Veldhuis WB, van Leeuwen MS, Pluim JP, van den Bosch MA, van Stralen M., “Arterial and portal venous liver perfusion using selective spin labelling MRI.”, Eur Radiol. 2015;25(6):1529-40

De Vis JB, Petersen ET, Bhogal A, Hartkamp NS, Klijn CJ, Kappelle LJ, Hendrikse J., “Calibrated MRI to evaluate cerebral hemodynamics in patients with an internal carotid artery occlusion.”, J Cereb Blood Flow Metab. 2015;35(6):1015-23

Siero JC, Hartkamp NS, Donahue MJ, Harteveld AA, Compter A, Petersen ET, Hendrikse J., “Neuronal activation induced BOLD and CBF responses upon acetazolamide administration in patients with steno-occlusive artery disease.”, Neuroimage. 2015;105:276-85

Varela M, Petersen ET, Golay X, Hajnal JV., “Cerebral blood flow measurements in infants using look-locker arterial spin labeling.”, J Magn Reson Imaging. 2015;41(6):1591-600

Gustin SM, McKay JG, Petersen ET, Peck CC, Murray GM, Henderson LA., “Subtle alterations in brain anatomy may change an individual's personality in chronic pain.”, PLoS One. 2014;9(10):e109664

Castellaro M, Peruzzo D, Mehndiratta A, Pillonetto G, Petersen ET, Golay X, Chappell MA, Bertoldo A., “Estimation of arterial arrival time and cerebral blood flow from QUASAR arterial spin labeling using stable spline.”, Magn Reson Med. 2014 Nov 26. [Epub ahead of print]

De Vis JB, Hendrikse J, Petersen ET, de Vries LS, van Bel F, Alderliesten T, Negro S, Groenendaal F, Benders MJ., “Arterial spin-labelling perfusion MRI and outcome in neonates with hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy.”, Eur Radiol. 2015;25(1):113-21

Ahlgren A, Wirestam R, Petersen ET, Ståhlberg F, Knutsson L., “Partial volume correction of brain perfusion estimates using the inherent signal data of time-resolved arterial spin labeling.”, NMR Biomed. 2014;27(9):1112-22

De Vis JB, Hendrikse J, Groenendaal F, de Vries LS, Kersbergen KJ, Benders MJ, Petersen ET., “Impact of neonate haematocrit variability on the longitudinal relaxation time of blood: Implications for arterial spin labelling MRI.”, Neuroimage Clin. 2014;4:517-25.

J.B. De Vis, E.T. Petersen, T. Alderliesten, F. Groenendaal, L.S. de Vries, F. van Bel, M.J. Benders, J. Hendrikse, “Non-invasive MRI measurements of venous oxygenation, oxygen extraction fraction and oxygen consumption in neonates.”, Neuroimage 2014;29 pii: S1053-8119 (14) 00221-3

F.F. Simonis, E.T. Petersen, L.W. Bartels, J.J Lagendijk, C.A. van den Berg, “Compensating for magnetic field inhomogeneity in multi gradient-echo-based MR thermometry.”, Magn Reson Med. 2015;73(3):1184-9

D.F. Heijtel, H.J. Mutsaerts, E. Bakker, P. Schober, M.F. Stevens, E.T. Petersen, B.N. van Berckel, C.B. Majoie, J. Booij, M.J. van Osch, E. Vanbavel, R. Boellaard, A.A. Lammertsma, A.J. Nederveen, “Accuracy and precision of pseudo-continuous arterial spin labeling perfusion during baseline and hypercapnia: A head-to-head comparison with 15O H2O positron emission tomography.”, Neuroimage. 2014 Feb 13;92C:182-192

A.M. Youssef, S.M. Gustin, P.G. Nash, J.M. Reeves, E.T. Petersen, C.C. Peck, G.M. Murray, L.A. Henderson, “Differential brain activity in subjects with painful trigeminal neuropathy and painful temporomandibular disorder.”, Pain 2014;155(3):467-75

T. Alderliesten, J.B. De Vis, P.M. Lemmers, F. van Bel, M.J. Benders, J. Hendrikse, E.T. Petersen, “Simultaneous quantitative assessment of cerebral physiology using respiratory-calibrated MRI and near-infrared spectroscopy in healthy adults.”, Neuroimage 2014;15;85 Pt 1:255-63

J.B. De Vis, E.T. Petersen, K.J. Kersbergen, T. Alderliesten, L.S. de Vries, F. van Bel, F. Groenendaal, P.M. Lemmers, J. Hendrikse, M.J. Benders, “Evaluation of perinatal arterial ischemic stroke using noninvasive arterial spin labeling perfusion MRI.”, Pediatr Res. 2013;74(3):307-13

L.A. Henderson, C.C. Peck, E.T. Petersen, C.D. Rae, A.M. Youssef, J.M. Reeves, S.L.Wilcox, R. Akhter, G.M. Murray, S.M. Gustin, “Chronic pain: lost inhibition?”, J Neurosci 2013;33(17):7574-82

J.B. De Vis, E.T. Petersen, L.S. de Vries, F. Groenendaal, K.J. Kersbergen, T. Alderliesten, J. Hendrikse, M.J. Benders, “Regional changes in brain perfusion during brain maturation measured non-invasively with Arterial Spin Labeling MRI in neonates”, Eur J Radiol 2013; 82(3):538-43

A. Ahlgren, R. Wirestam, E.T. Petersen, F. Stahlberg, L. Knutsson, “Perfusion quantification by model-free arterial spin labeling using nonlinear stochastic regularization deconvolution”, Magn Reson Med. 2013;70(5):1470-80

N. Dashdorj, K. Corrie, A. Napolitano, E.T. Petersen, R.P. Mahajan, D.P. Auer, “Effects of subanesthetic dose of nitrous oxide on cerebral blood flow and metabolism: a multimodal magnetic resonance imaging study in healthy volunteers.”, Anesthesiology 2013;118(3):577-86

S.M. Kim, M.J. Kim, H.Y. Rhee, C.W. Ryu, E.J. Kim, E.T. Petersen, G.H. Jahng, “Regional cerebral perfusion in patients with Alzheimer’s disease and mild cognitive impairment: effect of APOE epsilon4 allele”, Neuroradiology 2013; 55(1): 25-34

M.A. Chappell, M.W. Woolrich, E.T. Petersen, X. Golay, S.J. Payne, “Comparing model-based and model-free analysis methods for QUASAR arterial spin labeling perfusion quantification”, Magn Reson Med. 2013;69(5):1466-75

N.S. Hartkamp, E.T. Petersen, J.B. De Vis, R.P. Bokkers, J.Hendrikse, “Mapping of cerebral perfusion territories using territorial arterial spin labeling: techniques and clinical application”, NMR Biomed. 2013;26(8):901-12

X. Zhang, E.T. Petersen, E. Ghariq, J.B. De Vis, A.G. Webb, W.M. Teeuwisse, J. Hendrikse, M.J. van Osch, “In vivo blood T(1) measurements at 1.5 T, 3 T and 7 T”, Magn Reson Med 2013;70(4):1082-6

J. Hendrikse, E.T. Petersen, X. Golay, “Vascular disorders: insights from arterial spin labeling”, Neuroimaging Clin N Am 2012; 22(2): 259-69

H.K. Mak, Q. Chan, Z. Zhang, E.T. Petersen, D. Qiu, L. Zhang, K.K. Yau, L.W. Chu, X. Golay, “Quantitative assessment of cerebral hemodynamic parameters by QUASAR arterial spin labeling in Alzheimer’s disease and cognitively normal Elderly adults at 3-Tesla”, J Alzheimers Dis 2012;31(1):33-44

D. van Westen, E.T. Petersen, R. Wirestam, R. Siemund, K. M. Bloch, F. Ståhlberg, I.M. Björkman-Burtscher, L. Knutsson, “Arterial blood volume obtained by arterial spin labeling correlates with cerebral blood volume in intracranial tumours”, MAGMA 2011; 24(4):211-23

Y.-C. L. Ho, E.T. Petersen, I. Zimine, X. Golay, “Similarities and differences in arterial responses to hypercapnia and visual stimulation”, Cereb Blood Flow Metab. 2011; 31(2):560-71

M. Varela, J.V. Hajnal, E.T. Petersen, X. Golay, D.J. Larkman, “A Method for Rapid in Vivo Measurement of Blood T1”, NMR in Biomed. 2011; 24(1):80-8

E.T. Petersen, K. Mouridsen, X. Golay, on behalf of the QUASAR test-retest study, “The QUASAR reproducibility study, Part II: Results from a multi center Arterial Spin Labeling test-retest Study”, Neuroimage. 2010;49(1):104-13

Y.-C. L. Ho, E.T. Petersen, X. Golay, “Measuring Arterial and Tissue Responses to Functional Challenges using Arterial Spin Labelling”, Neuroimage. 2010;49(1):478-487.

J. Hendrikse, E.T. Petersen, S. M. Chng, N. Venketasubramanian, X. Golay, “Distribution of Cerebral Blood Flow in the Nucleus Caudatus, Nucleus Lentiformis and Thalamus: A Territorial Arterial Spin Labeling MRI Study”, Radiology 2010 Mar;254(3):867-75

L. Knutsson, D. van Westen, E.T. Petersen, K.M. Bloch, S. Holtås, F. Ståhlberg, R. Wirestam, “Absolute quantification of cerebral blood flow: a comparison between dynamic susceptibility contrast MRI and modelfree arterial spin labeling”, Magn. Reson. Imag. 2010;28(1):1-7

Y.-C. L. Ho, A. Cheze, Y.-Y. Sitoh, E.T. Petersen, A. Gjedde, K.-Y. Goh, X. Golay, “Residual Neurovascular Function and Retinotopy in a case of Hemianopia”, Ann Acad Med Singapore. 2009;38(9):827-831.

J. Hendrikse, E.T. Petersen, A. Chèze, S. M. Chng, N. Venketasubramanian, X. Golay, “Relation Between Cerebral Perfusion Territories and Location of Cerebral Infarcts”, Stroke 2009;40(5):1617-1622

S.M. Chng, E.T. Petersen, I. Zimine, Y.Y. Sitoh, C.C. Lim, X. Golay, “Territorial Arterial Spin Labeling in the Assessment of Collateral Circulation”, Stroke 2008;39(12):3248-54

J. Hendrikse, E.T. Petersen, P.J. van Laar, X. Golay, “Magnetic Resonance Imaging of Cerebral Borderzones”, Radiology 2008;246(2):572-580

T.C.C. Lim, E.T. Petersen, I.B.H. Ng, P. Hwang, F. Hui, X. Golay “MR Regional Perfusion Imaging: visualizing functional collateral circulation” AJNR Am J Neuroradiol. 2007;28: 447-448

X. Golay, E.T. Petersen, I. Zimine, T.C.C. Lim, “Arterial Spin Labeling: a one-stop-shop for measurement of brain perfusion in the clinical settings”, Conf Proc IEEE Eng Med Biol Soc 2007;4320-3

E.T. Petersen, I. Zimine, Y.-C. L. Ho, X. Golay, “Non-Invasive Measurement of Perfusion: A Critical Review of Arterial Spin Labeling Techniques”, British Journal of Radiology 2006,79:688-701

X. Golay , E.T. Petersen, “Arterial Spin Labeling: Benefits and Pitfalls of High Magnetic Field”, Neuroimag Clin N Am 2006;16:259-268

I. Zimine, E.T. Petersen, X. Golay “Dual vessel arterial spin labeling scheme for regional perfusion imaging” Magn. Reson. Med. 2006;56(5):1140-1144

E.T. Petersen, T.C.C. Lim, X. Golay, “Model-Free Quantitative Arterial Spin Labeling Approach for Perfusion MRI”, Magn. Reson. Med. 2006;55(2):219-232

M. Van Cauteren, 鈴木由里子, 小原真, X. Golay, E.T. Petersen, “パーフュージョンの定量化に向けたMR Arterial Spin Labellingの新たなアプローチ
INNERVISION, 2005;20(10):106-111

X. Golay, E.T. Petersen, F. Hui, “PULsed STAR labeling of Arterial Regions (PULSAR): a Robust Regional Perfusion Technique for High Field Imaging”, Magn. Reson. Med. 2005;53(1):15-21

LM Parkes, H Lu, ET Petersen. Blood Flow Quantitation With ASL. MR and CT Perfusion and Pharmacokinetic Imaging: Clinical Applications and Theory, Wolters Kluwer. In Press

J Hendrikse, ET Petersen, X Golay. Vascular disorders: insights from arterial spin labeling Neuroimaging clinics of North America, Elsevier. 2012

JB De Vis, ET Petersen, J Hendrikse. Arterial Spin Labeling Magnetic Resonance Imaging. PET Clinics, Elsevier. 2013

X Golay, ET Petersen. Arterial Spin Labeling: Benefits and Pitfalls of High Magnetic Field. Neuroimaging clinics of North America, Elsevier. 2006