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Brain Connect. 2011;1(1):37-47. doi: 10.1089/brain.2011.0005.

Superficially located white matter structures commonly seen in the human and the macaque brain with diffusion tensor imaging.

Author information

1
The Russell H. Morgan Department of Radiology and Radiological Science, The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland 21205, USA. koishi@mri.hju.edu

Abstract

The white matter of the brain consists of fiber tracts that connect different regions of the brain. Among these tracts, the intrahemispheric cortico-cortical connections are called association fibers. The U-fibers are short association fibers that connect adjacent gyri. These fibers were thought to work as part of the cortico-cortical networks to execute associative brain functions. However, their anatomy and functions have not been documented in detail for the human brain. In past studies, U-fibers have been characterized in the human brain with diffusion tensor imaging (DTI). However, the validity of such findings remains unclear. In this study, DTI of the macaque brain was performed, and the anatomy of U-fibers was compared with that of the human brain reported in a previous study. The macaque brain was chosen because it is the most commonly used animal model for exploring cognitive functions and the U-fibers of the macaque brain have been already identified by axonal tracing studies, which makes it an ideal system for confirming the DTI findings. Ten U-fibers found in the macaque brain were also identified in the human brain, with a similar organization and topology. The delineation of these species-conserved white matter structures may provide new options for understanding brain anatomy and function.

PMID:
22432953
PMCID:
PMC3569096
DOI:
10.1089/brain.2011.0005
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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