Generation and evaluation of an ultra-high-field atlas with applications in DBS planning

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Conference Proceeding

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Progress in Biomedical Optics and Imaging - Proceedings of SPIE



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© 2016 SPIE. Purpose Deep brain stimulation (DBS) is a common treatment for Parkinson's disease (PD) and involves the use of brain atlases or intrinsic landmarks to estimate the location of target deep brain structures, such as the subthalamic nucleus (STN) and the globus pallidus pars interna (GPi). However, these structures can be difficult to localize with conventional clinical magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and thus targeting can be prone to error. Ultra-high-field imaging at 7T has the ability to clearly resolve these structures and thus atlases built with these data have the potential to improve targeting accuracy. Methods T1 and T2-weighted images of 12 healthy control subjects were acquired using a 7T MR scanner. These images were then used with groupwise registration to generate an unbiased average template with T1w and T2w contrast. Deep brain structures were manually labelled in each subject by two raters and rater reliability was assessed. We compared the use of this unbiased atlas with two other methods of atlas-based segmentation (single-template and multi-template) for subthalamic nucleus (STN) segmentation on 7T MRI data. We also applied this atlas to clinical DBS data acquired at 1.5T to evaluate its efficacy for DBS target localization as compared to using a standard atlas. Results The unbiased templates provide superb detail of subcortical structures. Through one-way ANOVA tests, the unbiased template is significantly (p <0.05) more accurate than a single-template in atlas-based segmentation and DBS target localization tasks. Conclusion The generated unbiased averaged templates provide better visualization of deep brain nuclei and an increase in accuracy over single-template and lower field strength atlases.

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