Spatial normalization and morphological studies of pediatric brain imaging data based on adult reference data may not be appropriate due to the developmental differences between the two populations. In this study, we set out to create pediatric templates and a priori brain tissue data from a large collection of normal, healthy children to compare it to standard adult data available within a widely used imaging software solution (SPM99, WDOCN, London, UK). Employing four different processing strategies, we found considerable differences between our pediatric data and the adult data. We conclude that caution should be used when analyzing pediatric brain data using adult a priori information. To assess the effects of using pediatric a priori brain information, the data obtained in this study is available to the scientific community from our website (www.irc.cchmc.org).
Copyright 2003 Wiley-Liss, Inc.