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PLoS One. 2013 May 17;8(5):e63842. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0063842. Print 2013.

Using high angular resolution diffusion imaging data to discriminate cortical regions.

Author information

1
Wellcome Trust Centre for Neuroimaging, UCL Institute of Neurology, University College London, London, United Kingdom. z.nagy@ucl.ac.uk

Abstract

Brodmann's 100-year-old summary map has been widely used for cortical localization in neuroscience. There is a pressing need to update this map using non-invasive, high-resolution and reproducible data, in a way that captures individual variability. We demonstrate here that standard HARDI data has sufficiently diverse directional variation among grey matter regions to inform parcellation into distinct functional regions, and that this variation is reproducible across scans. This characterization of the signal variation as non-random and reproducible is the critical condition for successful cortical parcellation using HARDI data. This paper is a first step towards an individual cortex-wide map of grey matter microstructure, The gray/white matter and pial boundaries were identified on the high-resolution structural MRI images. Two HARDI data sets were collected from each individual and aligned with the corresponding structural image. At each vertex point on the surface tessellation, the diffusion-weighted signal was extracted from each image in the HARDI data set at a point, half way between gray/white matter and pial boundaries. We then derived several features of the HARDI profile with respect to the local cortical normal direction, as well as several fully orientationally invariant features. These features were taken as a fingerprint of the underlying grey matter tissue, and used to distinguish separate cortical areas. A support-vector machine classifier, trained on three distinct areas in repeat 1 achieved 80-82% correct classification of the same three areas in the unseen data from repeat 2 in three volunteers. Though gray matter anisotropy has been mostly overlooked hitherto, this approach may eventually form the foundation of a new cortical parcellation method in living humans. Our approach allows for further studies on the consistency of HARDI based parcellation across subjects and comparison with independent microstructural measures such as ex-vivo histology.

PMID:
23691102
PMCID:
PMC3656939
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0063842
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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