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Role of standardized and study-specific human brain diffusion tensor templates in inter-subject spatial normalization

Authors

  • Shengwei Zhang BS,

    1. Department of Biomedical Engineering, Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago, Illinois, USA
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  • Konstantinos Arfanakis PhD

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Biomedical Engineering, Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago, Illinois, USA
    2. Rush Alzheimer's Disease Center, Rush University Medical Center, Chicago, Illinois, USA
    3. Department of Diagnostic Radiology and Nuclear Medicine, Rush University Medical Center, Chicago, Illinois, USA
    • Department of Biomedical Engineering, Illinois Institute of Technology, 3440 S. Dearborn Street, MIRC, M-102, Chicago, IL 60616
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Abstract

Purpose:

To investigate the effect of standardized and study-specific human brain diffusion tensor templates on the accuracy of spatial normalization, without ignoring the important roles of data quality and registration algorithm effectiveness.

Materials and Methods:

Two groups of diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) datasets, with and without visible artifacts, were normalized to two standardized diffusion tensor templates (IIT2, ICBM81) as well as study-specific templates, using three registration approaches. The accuracy of inter-subject spatial normalization was compared across templates, using the most effective registration technique for each template and group of data.

Results:

It was demonstrated that, for DTI data with visible artifacts, the study-specific template resulted in significantly higher spatial normalization accuracy than standardized templates. However, for data without visible artifacts, the study-specific template and the standardized template of higher quality (IIT2) resulted in similar normalization accuracy.

Conclusion:

For DTI data with visible artifacts, a carefully constructed study-specific template may achieve higher normalization accuracy than that of standardized templates. However, as DTI data quality improves, a high-quality standardized template may be more advantageous than a study-specific template, because in addition to high normalization accuracy, it provides a standard reference across studies, as well as automated localization/segmentation when accompanied by anatomical labels. J. Magn. Reson. Imaging 2013;37:372–381. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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