ND PHARMA & BIOTECH GIVES A NEW STEP IN THE UNVEAL OF BRAIN CONNECTION MYSTERIES AND ITS DECIPHERING. (Diffusion Spectrum MRI)
A NEW TECHNIQUE DESIGNED FOR THE COMPREHENSIVE UNDERSTANDING OF HUMAN BRAIN CONNECTIONS WILL BE CO-LAUNCHED WITH PARTNER COMPANIES, WITH AN IMPORTANT IMPACT ON THE STUDY AND THERAPIES DEVELOPMENT OF CERTAIN DISEASES OF THE CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM AND FUTURE TREATMENT OPTIONS.
This project will fill a gap in neuroscience. Scientists understand less about how structure relates to function in the brain than they do for any other organ. Connections between neurons define neuroanatomy, and these thin fiber tracts show up poorly with most imaging technologies. To visualize axons, researchers use a variant of MRI called diffusion tensor imaging, which maps the flow of water through tissues. As fluid moves along versus across axons, the technique allows scientists to see these microscopic projections. A recent advance, diffusion spectrum imaging (DSI), distinguishes intersecting tracts. Crossing fibers cause a problem for dissecting brain structure, because multiple pathways can occupy the same location. With these new techniques, scientists can see things that cannot be seen with any other method. That includes visualizing the three-dimensional fiber architecture of the entire brain, he said.
This project will be an important step in developing connectivity methods that can be used in ALZHEIMER´S DISEASE research. The methods have great potential, and a lot of work is underway to enable optimal measurement stability for time series data.This project exemplifies “big data,” as it will generate about one petabyte, i.e., one quadrillion or 1,000,000,000,000,000 bytes of data, about 2,000 times the size of a typical desktop hard drive.
The high-resolution connectome data generated by partner institutions could have many uses. For example, researchers might identify boundaries between brain regions by looking for changes in connectivity patterns. Using task fMRI data, researchers can ask questions such as, What brain networks co-vary with working memory performance? The findings will identify anatomical pathways relevant to task performance. For example, good two-handed coordination correlates with strong connectivity in a small cluster in the corpus callosum.
While neuroanatomy often looks confusing because of the crossing of multiple fiber pathways, the imaging resolved this into geometric order, showing that cortical fibers form smooth sheets that tend to travel in one of three perpendicular directions, forming a three-dimensional grid. These smooth sheets may reflect concentration gradients from embryological development. Scientists have known for long time, that the cortex starts out as a flat sheet and crumples up during development into the deep convolutions of the adult brain. High-resolution microscopy also reveals that fibers typically make 90 degree turns rather than smooth curves when they need to change direction. This finding illustrates the power of the new machine to provide a more detailed anatomical understanding of the brain. Existing diffusion imaging methods cannot visualize these microscopic turns. Scientists from different sectors became impressed by the fixed patterns revealed by these scans.The architecture of the brain shown is tremendously precise. This should be a huge asset for mapping and looking for changes in disease states.
Welcome to ND NEWS.