Methods ARTICLE

Front. Neurol., 06 February 2012 | doi: 10.3389/fneur.2012.00010

Patient-tailored connectomics visualization for the assessment of white matter atrophy in traumatic brain injury

Andrei Irimia1, Micah C. Chambers1, Carinna M. Torgerson1, Maria Filippou2, David A. Hovda2, Jeffry R. Alger3, Guido Gerig4, Arthur W. Toga1, Paul M. Vespa2, Ron Kikinis5 and John D. Van Horn1*
  • 1 Laboratory of Neuro Imaging, Department of Neurology, University of California Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA, USA
  • 2 Brain Injury Research Center, Departments of Neurology and Neurosurgery, University of California Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA, USA
  • 3 Department of Radiology, David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA, USA
  • 4 Scientific Computing and Imaging Institute, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT, USA
  • 5 Surgery Planning Laboratory, Department of Radiology, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA

Available approaches to the investigation of traumatic brain injury (TBI) are frequently hampered, to some extent, by the unsatisfactory abilities of existing methodologies to efficiently define and represent affected structural connectivity and functional mechanisms underlying TBI-related pathology. In this paper, we describe a patient-tailored framework which allows mapping and characterization of TBI-related structural damage to the brain via multimodal neuroimaging and personalized connectomics. Specifically, we introduce a graphically driven approach for the assessment of trauma-related atrophy of white matter connections between cortical structures, with relevance to the quantification of TBI chronic case evolution. This approach allows one to inform the formulation of graphical neurophysiological and neuropsychological TBI profiles based on the particular structural deficits of the affected patient. In addition, it allows one to relate the findings supplied by our workflow to the existing body of research that focuses on the functional roles of the cortical structures being targeted. A graphical means for representing patient TBI status is relevant to the emerging field of personalized medicine and to the investigation of neural atrophy.

Keywords: connectomics, traumatic brain injury, atrophy, rehabilitation, DTI

Citation: Irimia A, Chambers MC, Torgerson CM, Filippou M, Hovda DA, Alger JR, Gerig G, Toga AW, Vespa PM, Kikinis R and Van Horn JD (2012) Patient-tailored connectomics visualization for the assessment of white matter atrophy in traumatic brain injury. Front. Neur. 3:10. doi: 10.3389/fneur.2012.00010

Received: 04 November 2011; Paper pending published: 28 November 2011;
Accepted: 16 January 2012; Published online: 06 February 2012.

Edited by:

Mattias Sköld, Uppsala University, Sweden

Reviewed by:

David Krishna Menon, University of Cambridge, UK
Elna-Marie Larsson, Uppsala University, Sweden

Copyright: © 2012 Irimia, Chambers, Torgerson, Filippou, Hovda, Alger, Gerig, Toga, Vespa, Kikinis and Van Horn. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial License, which permits non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in other forums, provided the original authors and source are credited.

*Correspondence: John D. Van Horn, Laboratory of Neuro Imaging, Department of Neurology, University of California Los Angeles, 635 Charles E. Young Drive South, Suite 225, Los Angeles, CA 90095, USA. e-mail: jack.vanhorn@loni.ucla.edu

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