Diffusion tensor imaging of time-dependent axonal and myelin degradation after corpus callosotomy in epilepsy patients

Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
NeuroImage (Impact Factor: 6.13). 10/2006; 32(3):1090-9. DOI: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2006.04.187
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Axonal degeneration of white matter fibers is a key consequence of neuronal or axonal injury. It is characterized by a series of time-related events with initial axonal membrane collapse followed by myelin degradation being its major hallmarks. Standard imaging cannot differentiate these phenomena, which would be useful for clinical investigations of degeneration, regeneration and plasticity. Animal models suggest that diffusion tensor magnetic resonance imaging (DTI) is capable of making such distinction. The applicability of this technique in humans would permit inferences on white matter microanatomy using a non-invasive technique. The surgical bisection of the anterior 2/3 of the corpus callosum for the palliative treatment of certain types of epilepsy serves as a unique opportunity to assess this method in humans. DTI was performed on three epilepsy patients before corpus callosotomy and at two time points (1 week and 2-4 months) after surgery. Tractography was used to define voxels of interest for analysis of mean diffusivity, fractional anisotropy and eigenvalues. Diffusion anisotropy was reduced in a spatially dependent manner in the genu and body of the corpus callosum at 1 week and remained low 2-4 months after the surgery. Decreased anisotropy at 1 week was due to a reduction in parallel diffusivity (consistent with axonal fragmentation), whereas at 2-4 months, it was due to an increase in perpendicular diffusivity (consistent with myelin degradation). DTI is capable of non-invasively detecting, staging and following the microstructural degradation of white matter following axonal injury.

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Objectives To investigate both cross-sectional and time-related changes of striatal and whole-brain microstructural properties in different stages of Huntington's disease (HD) using diffusion tensor imaging.Experimental designFrom the TRACK-HD study, premanifest gene carriers (preHD), early manifest HD and controls were scanned at baseline and 2-year follow-up. Stratification of the preHD group into a far (preHD-A) and near (preHD-B) to predicted disease onset was performed. Age-corrected histograms of whole-brain white matter (WM), gray matter (GM) and striatal diffusion measures were computed and normalised by the number of voxels in each subject's data set.Principle observationsHigher cross-sectional mean, axial and radial diffusivities were found in both WM (P ≤ 0.001) and GM (P ≤ 0.001) of the manifest HD compared to the preHD and control groups. In preHD, only WM axial diffusivity (AD) was higher than in controls (P ≤ 0.01). This finding remained valid only in preHD-B (P ≤ 0.001). AD was also higher in the striatum of preHD-B compared to controls and preHD-A (P ≤ 0.01). Fractional anisotropy (FA) lacked sensitivity in differentiating between the groups. Histogram peak heights were generally lower in manifest HD compared to the preHD and control groups. No longitudinal differences were found in the degree of diffusivity change between the groups in the two year follow-up. There was a significant relationship between diffusivity and neurocognitive measures.Conclusions Alterations in cross-sectional diffusion profiles between manifest HD subjects and controls were evident, both in whole-brain and striatum. In the preHD stage, only AD alterations were found, a finding suggesting that this metric is a sensitive marker for early change in HD prior to disease manifestation. The individual diffusivities were superior to FA in revealing pathologic microstructural brain alterations. Diffusion measures were well related to clinical functioning and disease stage. Hum Brain Mapp, 2015. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
    Human Brain Mapping 02/2015; DOI:10.1002/hbm.22756 · 6.92 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: To investigate the feasibility and time window of early detection of Wallerian degeneration in the corticospinal tract after middle cerebral artery infarction, 23 patients were assessed using magnetic resonance diffusion tensor imaging at 3.0T within 14 days after the infarction. The fractional anisotropy values of the affected corticospinal tract began to decrease at 3 days after onset and decreased in all cases at 7 days. The diffusion coefficient remained unchanged. Experimental findings indicate that diffusion tensor imaging can detect the changes associated with Wallerian degeneration of the corticospinal tract as early as 3 days after cerebral infarction.
    Neural Regeneration Research 04/2012; 7(12):900-5. DOI:10.3969/j.issn.1673-5374.2012.12.004 · 0.23 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Mutations in the SPG4 gene (SPG4-HSP) are the most frequent cause of hereditary spastic paraplegia, but the extent of the neurodegeneration related to the disease is not yet known. Therefore, our objective is to identify regions of the central nervous system damaged in patients with SPG4-HSP using a multi-modal neuroimaging approach. In addition, we aimed to identify possible clinical correlates of such damage. Eleven patients (mean age 46.0 ± 15.0 years, 8 men) with molecular confirmation of hereditary spastic paraplegia, and 23 matched healthy controls (mean age 51.4 ± 14.1years, 17 men) underwent MRI scans in a 3T scanner. We used 3D T1 images to perform volumetric measurements of the brain and spinal cord. We then performed tract-based spatial statistics and tractography analyses of diffusion tensor images to assess microstructural integrity of white matter tracts. Disease severity was quantified with the Spastic Paraplegia Rating Scale. Correlations were then carried out between MRI metrics and clinical data. Volumetric analyses did not identify macroscopic abnormalities in the brain of hereditary spastic paraplegia patients. In contrast, we found extensive fractional anisotropy reduction in the corticospinal tracts, cingulate gyri and splenium of the corpus callosum. Spinal cord morphometry identified atrophy without flattening in the group of patients with hereditary spastic paraplegia. Fractional anisotropy of the corpus callosum and pyramidal tracts did correlate with disease severity. Hereditary spastic paraplegia is characterized by relative sparing of the cortical mantle and remarkable damage to the distal portions of the corticospinal tracts, extending into the spinal cord.
    PLoS ONE 02/2015; 10(2):e0117666. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0117666 · 3.53 Impact Factor


Available from
Jun 1, 2014