Review

Neuropsychology Review

, Volume 20, Issue 2, pp 209-225

First online:

MR Diffusion Tensor Imaging: A Window into White Matter Integrity of the Working Brain

  • Sandra ChanraudAffiliated withDepartment of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University School of Medicine (MC5723)Neuroscience Program, SRI International
  • , Natalie ZahrAffiliated withDepartment of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University School of Medicine (MC5723)Neuroscience Program, SRI International
  • , Edith V. SullivanAffiliated withDepartment of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University School of Medicine (MC5723) Email author 
  • , Adolf PfefferbaumAffiliated withDepartment of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University School of Medicine (MC5723)Neuroscience Program, SRI International

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Abstract

As Norman Geschwind asserted in 1965, syndromes resulting from white matter lesions could produce deficits in higher-order functions and “disconnexion” or the interruption of connection between gray matter regions could be as disruptive as trauma to those regions per se. The advent of in vivo diffusion tensor imaging, which allows quantitative characterization of white matter fiber integrity in health and disease, has served to strengthen Geschwind’s proposal. Here we present an overview of the principles of diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) and its contribution to progress in our current understanding of normal and pathological brain function.

Keywords

Diffusion tensor imaging White matter Cognition Psychiatric and neurological diseases