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PLoS One. 2011 Apr 18;6(4):e18876. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0018876.

Functional connectivity fMRI of the rodent brain: comparison of functional connectivity networks in rat and mouse.

Author information

  • 1Bio-Imaging Lab, University of Antwerp, Antwerp, Belgium. elisabeth.jonckers@ua.ac.be


At present, resting state functional MRI (rsfMRI) is increasingly used in human neuropathological research. The present study aims at implementing rsfMRI in mice, a species that holds the widest variety of neurological disease models. Moreover, by acquiring rsfMRI data with a comparable protocol for anesthesia, scanning and analysis, in both rats and mice we were able to compare findings obtained in both species. The outcome of rsfMRI is different for rats and mice and depends strongly on the applied number of components in the Independent Component Analysis (ICA). The most important difference was the appearance of unilateral cortical components for the mouse resting state data compared to bilateral rat cortical networks. Furthermore, a higher number of components was needed for the ICA analysis to separate different cortical regions in mice as compared to rats.

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