Anatomy and Neuroscience - Research Publications

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    MR imaging correlates of white-matter pathology in a preterm baboon model
    Griffith, JL ; Shimony, JS ; Cousins, SA ; Rees, SE ; McCurnin, DC ; Inder, TE ; Neil, JJ (NATURE PUBLISHING GROUP, 2012-02-01)
    INTRODUCTION: Cerebral white-matter (WM) abnormalities on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) correlate with neurodevelopmental disability in infants born prematurely. RESULTS: Quantitative histological measures of WM and ventricular volumes correlated with qualitative MRI scores of WM volume loss and ventriculomegaly. Diffuse astrocytosis was associated with signal abnormality on T(2)-weighted imaging and higher apparent diffusion coefficient in WM. Loss of oligodendrocytes was associated with lower relative anisotropy characterized by higher radial diffusivity values. The relationship between histopathology and MRI abnormalities was more pronounced in animals in the 28 d model, equivalent to the term human infant. DISCUSSION: MRI reflects microstructural and anatomical abnormalities that are characteristic of WM injury in the preterm brain, and these changes are more evident on MRI at term-equivalent postmenstrual age. METHODS: We assessed the histopathological correlates of MRI abnormalities in a baboon model of premature birth. Baboons were delivered at 125 d of gestation (dg, term ~185 dg) and maintained in an animal intensive care unit for 14 (n = 26) or 28 d (n = 17). Gestational control animals were delivered at 140 dg (n = 9) or 153 dg (n = 4). Cerebral WM in fixed brains was evaluated using MRI, diffusion tensor imaging (DTI), and histopathology.