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Abstract #3035

Combined fMRI of the human brain and the cervical spinal cord to investigate pain processing

Christian Sprenger 1 , Jrgen Finsterbusch 1 , and Christian Bchel 1

1 Department of Systems Neuroscience, University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf, Hamburg, Germany

With blood-oxygenation level-dependent functional MRI (fMRI) the central nervous system can be investigated in vivo, e.g., to study the representation and modulation of pain. Many fMRI studies on the brain's role in pain processing have been performed and recently interest in the spinal cord's involvement has increased. However, to study the functional interplay between the brain and the spinal cord in pain processing, both regions must be covered in a single measurement. Here, first results of a combined fMRI study to investigate the processing of painful thermal stimuli in the brain and the spinal cord are presented.

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