The presence of networks of correlation between regional gray matter volume as measured across subjects in a group of individuals has been consistently described in several human studies, an approach termed structural covariance MRI (scMRI). Complementary to prevalent brain mapping modalities like functional and diffusion-weighted imaging, the approach can provide precious insights into the mutual influence of trophic and plastic processes in health and pathological states. To investigate whether analogous scMRI networks are present in lower mammal species amenable to genetic and experimental manipulation such as the laboratory mouse, we employed high resolution morphoanatomical MRI in a large cohort of genetically-homogeneous wild-type mice (C57Bl6/J) and mapped scMRI networks using a seed-based approach. We show that the mouse brain exhibits robust homotopic scMRI networks in both primary and associative cortices, a finding corroborated by independent component analyses of cortical volumes. Subcortical structures also showed highly symmetric inter-hemispheric correlations, with evidence of distributed antero-posterior networks in diencephalic regions of the thalamus and hypothalamus. Hierarchical cluster analysis revealed six identifiable clusters of cortical and sub-cortical regions corresponding to previously described neuroanatomical systems. Our work documents the presence of homotopic cortical and subcortical scMRI networks in the mouse brain, thus supporting the use of this species to investigate the elusive biological and neuroanatomical underpinnings of scMRI network development and its derangement in neuropathological states. The identification of scMRI networks in genetically homogeneous inbred mice is consistent with the emerging view of a key role of environmental factors in shaping these correlational networks.
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|Titolo:||Structural covariance networks in the mouse brain|
|Autori:||Pagani, Marco; Angelo, Bifone; Alessandro, Gozzi|
|Titolo del periodico:||NEUROIMAGE|
|Anno di pubblicazione:||2016|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||03.1 Articolo su rivista (Journal article)|