We have developed a method for automated probabilistic reconstruction of a set of major white-matter pathways from diffusion-weighted MR images. Our method is called TRACULA (TRActs Constrained by UnderLying Anatomy) and utilizes prior information on the anatomy of the pathways from a set of training subjects. By incorporating this prior knowledge in the reconstruction procedure, our method obviates the need for manual interaction with the tract solutions at a later stage and thus facilitates the application of tractography to large studies. In this paper we illustrate the application of the method on data from a schizophrenia study and investigate whether the inclusion of both patients and healthy subjects in the training set affects our ability to reconstruct the pathways reliably. We show that, since our method does not constrain the exact spatial location or shape of the pathways but only their trajectory relative to the surrounding anatomical structures, a set a of healthy training subjects can be used to reconstruct the pathways accurately in patients as well as in controls.
Keywords: tractography, diffusion MRI, white matter
Citation: Yendiki A, Panneck P, Srinivasan P, Stevens A, Zöllei L, Augustinack J, Wang R, Salat D, Ehrlich S, Behrens T, Jbabdi S, Gollub R and Fischl B (2011) Automated probabilistic reconstruction of white-matter pathways in health and disease using an atlas of the underlying anatomy. Front. Neuroinform. 5:23. doi: 10.3389/fninf.2011.00023
Received: 19 March 2011;
Accepted: 23 September 2011;
Published online: 14 October 2011.
Edited by:Claus Hilgetag, Jacobs University Bremen, Germany
Reviewed by:Simon B. Eickhoff, Institut for Medicine, Germany
Copyright: © 2011 Yendiki, Panneck, Srinivasan, Stevens, Zöllei, Augustinack, Wang, Salat, Ehrlich, Behrens, Jbabdi, Gollub and Fischl. This is an open-access article subject to a non-exclusive license between the authors and Frontiers Media SA, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in other forums, provided the original authors and source are credited and other Frontiers conditions are complied with.
*Correspondence: Anastasia Yendiki, Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging, 149 13th Street Suite 2301, Charlestown, MA 02129, USA. e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. harvard.edu