Automatic parcellation of human cortical gyri and sulci using standard anatomical nomenclature

Neuroimage. 2010 Oct 15;53(1):1-15. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2010.06.010. Epub 2010 Jun 12.


Precise localization of sulco-gyral structures of the human cerebral cortex is important for the interpretation of morpho-functional data, but requires anatomical expertise and is time consuming because of the brain's geometric complexity. Software developed to automatically identify sulco-gyral structures has improved substantially as a result of techniques providing topologically correct reconstructions permitting inflated views of the human brain. Here we describe a complete parcellation of the cortical surface using standard internationally accepted nomenclature and criteria. This parcellation is available in the FreeSurfer package. First, a computer-assisted hand parcellation classified each vertex as sulcal or gyral, and these were then subparcellated into 74 labels per hemisphere. Twelve datasets were used to develop rules and algorithms (reported here) that produced labels consistent with anatomical rules as well as automated computational parcellation. The final parcellation was used to build an atlas for automatically labeling the whole cerebral cortex. This atlas was used to label an additional 12 datasets, which were found to have good concordance with manual labels. This paper presents a precisely defined method for automatically labeling the cortical surface in standard terminology.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Algorithms*
  • Brain / anatomy & histology*
  • Computer Simulation
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Image Enhancement / methods
  • Image Interpretation, Computer-Assisted / methods*
  • Imaging, Three-Dimensional / methods*
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging / methods*
  • Male
  • Models, Anatomic
  • Pattern Recognition, Automated / methods*
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Terminology as Topic*
  • Young Adult