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Pediatr Res. 2007 May;61(5 Pt 1):546-51.

Assessment of infant brain development with frequency-domain near-infrared spectroscopy.

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  • 1Athinoula A. Martinos Center, Massachusetts General Hospital, Charlestown, Massachusetts 02129, USA. mari@nmr.mgh.harvard.edu


This is the first report to demonstrate quantitative monitoring of infant brain development with frequency-domain near-infrared spectroscopy (FD-NIRS). Regionally specific increases in blood volume and oxygen consumption were measured in healthy infants during their first year. The results agree with prior PET and SPECT reports; but, unlike these methods, FD-NIRS is portable and uses nonionizing radiation. Further, new information includes the relatively constant tissue oxygenation with age and location, suggesting a tight control between local oxygen delivery and consumption in healthy infants during brain development. FD-NIRS could become the preferred clinical tool for quantitatively assessing infant brain development.

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