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Abstract #0080

Cortical maturation in the preterm period revealed using a multi-component diffusion-weighted MR model.

Zach Eaton-Rosen 1 , Andrew Melbourne 1 , Eliza Orasanu 1 , Alan Bainbridge 2 , Giles S. Kendall 3 , Nicola J. Robertson 3 , Neil Marlow 3 , and Sebastien Ourselin 1

1 CMIC, UCL, London, United Kingdom, 2 Medical Physics, UCH, London, United Kingdom, 3 Academic Neonatology, EGA UCL Institute for Women's Health, London, United Kingdom

During normal cortical development, there is a period of high fractional anisotropy (FA) measured in the cortex as revealed by diffusion tensor imaging. In a longitudinal study of a preterm neonatal population, we fitted the NODDI model to multi-shell diffusion MR and separated the FA into contributions from orientation dispersion (ODI) and from the volume fraction of the intra-cellular component (vic). We found that the decrease in FA is predominantly attributable to increased ODI rather than changing vic. Establishing biomarkers of cortical maturation from diffusion-weighted data will aid in developing measures of cognitive outcome in this at-risk population.

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