Image contrast using the secondary and tertiary eigenvectors in diffusion tensor imaging

Authors

  • Jiangyang Zhang,

    Corresponding author
    1. Division of NMR Research, Department of Radiology, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland, USA
    2. Department of Biomedical Engineering, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland, USA
    • Department of Radiology, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, 217 Traylor Bldg., 720 Rutland Ave., Baltimore, MD 21205
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  • Peter C.M. van Zijl,

    1. Division of NMR Research, Department of Radiology, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland, USA
    2. F.M. Kirby Research Center for Functional Brain Imaging, Kennedy Krieger Institute, Baltimore, Maryland, USA
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    • Dr. van Zijl is a paid lecturer for Philips Medical Systems. This arrangement was approved by Johns Hopkins University in accordance with its conflict of interest policies.

  • Susumu Mori

    1. Division of NMR Research, Department of Radiology, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland, USA
    2. F.M. Kirby Research Center for Functional Brain Imaging, Kennedy Krieger Institute, Baltimore, Maryland, USA
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Abstract

Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) is a new imaging modality that can provide unique information on brain white matter anatomy. Measurements of water diffusion constant along multiple axes are fitted to a tensor model, from which the diffusion anisotropy and dominant fiber orientation can be estimated. Even though the tensor model is an oversimplification of the underlying neuroanatomy, information within the tensor has not been fully utilized in routine research and clinical studies. In this study we proposed and examined the properties and anatomical contents of several DTI-derived image contrasts that utilize all three eigenvectors. The new contrasts are studied and validated using known anatomical structures in ex vivo mouse brain and embryonic mouse cortex. Application to human white matter is illustrated. Our results suggest that when these contrasts are combined with a priori anatomical knowledge, they reveal neuroanatomical information that is useful for tissue segmentation and diagnosis of white matter lesions. Magn Reson Med, 2006. © 2006 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

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