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Parkinson's disease is a neurodegenerative disorder caused by neuronal cell loss in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc). We aimed to perform atlas-based relaxometry using an anatomical SNpc atlas and obtain baseline values of SNpc regions in healthy volunteers. Neuromelanin (NM)-sensitive imaging of the midbrain and whole-brain 3D T1 weighted images of 27 healthy volunteers (20 males; aged 36.3 ± 11.5 years) were obtained. An anatomical SNpc atlas was created using NM-sensitive images in standard space, and divided into medial (MG), dorsal (DG), and ventrolateral (VG) groups. Proton density (PD), T1, and T2 values in these regions were obtained using quantitative MRI. The relationships between PD, T1, and T2 values in each SNpc region and age were evaluated. The VG PD value was significantly higher than the MG and DG values. MG, DG, and VG T1 values were significantly different, whereas the T2 value of the MG was significantly lower than the DG and VG values. Moreover, a significant negative correlation between PD and T1 values of the MG and age was observed. The PD, T1, and T2 values of the SNpc regions measured in standard space using an anatomical atlas can be used as baseline values. PD and T1 values of the SNpc regions may be associated with NM concentrations. An anatomical SNpc atlas was created using NM-sensitive MRI and can be used for the quantitative evaluation of subsegments of the SNpc in standard space.

Citation

Yasuhiro Fujiwara, Shota Ishida, Yuki Matta, Masayuki Kanamoto, Hirohiko Kimura. Atlas-based relaxometry and subsegment analysis of the substantia nigra pars compacta using quantitative MRI: a healthy volunteer study. The British journal of radiology. 2022 Jul 01;95(1135):20210572

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PMID: 35357890

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