Reproducibility of quantitative tractography methods applied to cerebral white matter

Neuroimage. 2007 Jul 1;36(3):630-44. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2007.02.049. Epub 2007 Mar 20.


Tractography based on diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) allows visualization of white matter tracts. In this study, protocols to reconstruct eleven major white matter tracts are described. The protocols were refined by several iterations of intra- and inter-rater measurements and identification of sources of variability. Reproducibility of the established protocols was then tested by raters who did not have previous experience in tractography. The protocols were applied to a DTI database of adult normal subjects to study size, fractional anisotropy (FA), and T2 of individual white matter tracts. Distinctive features in FA and T2 were found for the corticospinal tract and callosal fibers. Hemispheric asymmetry was observed for the size of white matter tracts projecting to the temporal lobe. This protocol provides guidelines for reproducible DTI-based tract-specific quantification.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anisotropy
  • Brain / anatomy & histology*
  • Cell Count
  • Databases, Factual
  • Diffusion Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Female
  • Gyrus Cinguli / cytology
  • Gyrus Cinguli / physiology
  • Hippocampus / cytology
  • Hippocampus / physiology
  • Humans
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted
  • Male
  • Nerve Fibers / physiology
  • Neural Pathways / anatomy & histology*
  • Observer Variation
  • Pyramidal Tracts / anatomy & histology
  • Pyramidal Tracts / physiology
  • Reference Values
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Thalamus / anatomy & histology
  • Thalamus / physiology