Human brain atlas-based volumetry and relaxometry: application to healthy development and natural aging

Magn Reson Med. 2010 Nov;64(5):1382-9. doi: 10.1002/mrm.22515. Epub 2010 Aug 25.


This work investigated the feasibility and utility of using T2-weighted or dual spin-echo data to provide volume and T2 relaxation time for regional and global gray and white matter using standardized brain templates and anatomically labeled atlases. A total of 130 healthy males and females (age range 15-59 years) were included. Dual echo magnetic resonance imaging data were acquired and analyzed using standardized International Consortium for Human Brain Mapping atlas-based tissue segmentation procedures implemented in the statistical parametric mapping toolbox to obtain the age trajectories of volume and corresponding T2 relaxation time in whole brain white and gray matter, in the caudate nucleus and in the anterior limb of internal capsule. Whole brain gray matter and caudate nucleus volumes linearly decreased with age while whole brain white matter and anterior limb internal capsule volume increased slowly with age bilaterally in males and females. The relation between T2 relaxation time and age of whole brain gray and white matter, and caudate nucleus and anterior limb internal capsule followed a quadratic U-curve. The T2 relaxation times of the human brain followed a U curve both globally and regionally in both white and gray matter.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aging / pathology*
  • Aging / physiology*
  • Algorithms
  • Brain / anatomy & histology*
  • Brain / physiology*
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Image Enhancement / methods
  • Image Interpretation, Computer-Assisted / methods*
  • Imaging, Three-Dimensional / methods*
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging / methods*
  • Male
  • Models, Anatomic
  • Models, Neurological
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Young Adult