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ScientificWorldJournal. 2012;2012:530432. doi: 10.1100/2012/530432. Epub 2012 Nov 25.

Diffusion tensor imaging-based research on human white matter anatomy.

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  • 1Department of Medical Informatics and Medical Image, College of Biomedical Engineering and Medical Imaging, Third Military Medical University, Chongqing 400038, China. qiumingguo@yahoo.com


The aim of this study is to investigate the white matter by the diffusion tensor imaging and the Chinese visible human dataset and to provide the 3D anatomical data of the corticospinal tract for the neurosurgical planning by studying the probabilistic maps and the reproducibility of the corticospinal tract. Diffusion tensor images and high-resolution T1-weighted images of 15 healthy volunteers were acquired; the DTI data were processed using DtiStudio and FSL software. The FA and color FA maps were compared with the sectional images of the Chinese visible human dataset. The probability maps of the corticospinal tract were generated as a quantitative measure of reproducibility for each voxel of the stereotaxic space. The fibers displayed by the diffusion tensor imaging were well consistent with the sectional images of the Chinese visible human dataset and the existing anatomical knowledge. The three-dimensional architecture of the white matter fibers could be clearly visualized on the diffusion tensor tractography. The diffusion tensor tractography can establish the 3D probability maps of the corticospinal tract, in which the degree of intersubject reproducibility of the corticospinal tract is consistent with the previous architectonic report. DTI is a reliable method of studying the fiber connectivity in human brain, but it is difficult to identify the tiny fibers. The probability maps are useful for evaluating and identifying the corticospinal tract in the DTI, providing anatomical information for the preoperative planning and improving the accuracy of surgical risk assessments preoperatively.

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