Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences
Validation and Application
Lastly, we apply our latest methodological developments to fundamental neuroscientific research. We explore how cortical microarchitecture relates to genes and evolution. Our developments in optimized diffusion imaging and in optimized high-resolution functional imaging allow a detailed characterization of the visual system. By combining quantitative MRI with functional imaging methods, such as functional MRI and magnetoencephalography, we directly investigate the relationship between microstructure and information processing and transfer in the human brain. Finally, we aim to translate our methods to clinical applications, e.g., by providing quantitative outcome measures for clinical trials, such as the NISCI trial on spinal cord injury.
We linked the effective transverse relaxation rate R2* with dopaminergic cell densities and iron concentrations in nigrosome 1 by combining 3D quantitative iron histology, post mortem ultra-high resolution MRI, tissue deironing, and analytical modeling approaches.
We investigate the relationship between quantitative MRI (qMRI) at different cortical depths and cell counts, gene expression and white matter connections in the brain in order to provide novel biomarkers for tracking neurodegenerative diseases.