Mapping brain white-matter networks with diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance imaging

Date(s) - 02/08/2010
5:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Dr. Tom Mareci

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) measures the nuclear spin magnetic moment of mobile water (and other nuclear spin containing molecules).  Therefore contrast in MRI results from the complex behavior of water in the surrounding microenvironment, such as tissue in the brain.  Recently the diffusion of water has been shown to reflect the overall structure of white matter in the brain.  Therefore, MRI can be used to infer the fibrous structure of nervous tissue.  In our work to understand the structure of the epileptic brain, we have been developing methods to measure and model the diffusion of water in brain, which allow the inference brain structure.  From these results, we are able to generate white matter fiber tracts, which allow us to infer the network structure of the brain.