A segmentation protocol and MRI atlas of the C57BL/6J mouse neocortex

Neuroimage. 2013 Sep;78:196-203. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2013.04.008. Epub 2013 Apr 12.


The neocortex is the largest component of the mammalian cerebral cortex. It integrates sensory inputs with experiences and memory to produce sophisticated responses to an organism's internal and external environment. While areal patterning of the mouse neocortex has been mapped using histological techniques, the neocortex has not been comprehensively segmented in magnetic resonance images. This study presents a method for systematic segmentation of the C57BL/6J mouse neocortex. We created a minimum deformation atlas, which was hierarchically segmented into 74 neocortical and cortical-related regions, making it the most detailed atlas of the mouse neocortex currently available. In addition, we provide mean volumes and relative intensities for each structure as well as a nomenclature comparison between the two most cited histological atlases of the mouse brain. This MR atlas is available for download, and it should enable researchers to perform automated segmentation in genetic models of cortical disorders.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Anatomy, Artistic*
  • Animals
  • Atlases as Topic*
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted
  • Imaging, Three-Dimensional / methods
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Mice / anatomy & histology*
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Neocortex / anatomy & histology*