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Visualization and mapping of neurosurgical functional brain data onto a 3-D MR-based model of the brain surface.

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Dept. Biological Structure, University of Washington, Seattle 98195, USA.


The Human Brain Project was initiated with the goal of developing methods for managing and sharing information about the brain. As a prototype Human Brain Project application we are developing a system for organizing, visualizing, integrating and sharing information about human language function. The goal of the brain mapping component of our work, described in this article, is to generate the 3D location and extent of cortical language sites with respect to a uniform, 3D patient coordinate system. The language sites of individual patients can then be combined with or related to other patient data in terms of a Talairach, surface-based, or other deformable coordinate systems. Language site mapping is done by visually comparing an intraoperative photograph with the rendered image (from MRI data). The techniques outlined in this article have been utilized to map cortical language sites of six patients. Preliminary results point to the adequacy of our volume visualizations for language mapping. The strength of the visualization scheme lies in the combination of interactive segmentation with volume and surface visualization. We are now in the process of acquiring more patient data to further validate the usefulness of our method.

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