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Neuroimage. 2012 Aug 15;62(2):887-90. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2011.09.068. Epub 2011 Oct 2.

Tracing the route to path analysis in neuroimaging.

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Rotman Research Institute at Baycrest Center, Department of Psychology, University of Toronto, 3560 Bathurst Street, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M6A 2E1.


This article provides a personal perspective of the adoption of path analysis (structural equation modeling) to neuroimaging. The paper covers the motivation stemming from the need to merge functional measures with neuroanatomy and early innovations in its application. The use of path analysis as a means to test directional hypotheses about networks is presented along with the development of the complementary method, partial least squares. A method is useful when it provides insights that were previously inaccessible, and reflecting this, the paper concludes with a synopsis of the theoretical developments that arose for the routine use of methods like path analysis.

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