An Investigation of the Value of Spin-Echo-Based fMRI Using a Stroop Color–Word Matching Task and EPI at 3 T

The purpose of this study is to examine whether it is possible to use T2-weighted BOLD imaging at the main magnetic field strength of 3 T for cognitive studies and not just for examining the primary cortices

David G. Norris


Scholarcy highlights

  • There are three primary mechanisms that can contribute to BOLD signal changes in T2-weighted imaging: INTRODUCTION
  • It is clear that signal both from larger blood vessels and from the parynchema can be seen in T2-weighted BOLD imaging; in a previous study performed at 3 T it was possible to show an improved spatial resolution in the visual cortex compared to T*2weighted imaging
  • The specific aims are to verify that the same regions are activated as are seen with gradient-echo EPI as reported in the previous study, to qualitatively compare the activations obtained and to examine whether new regions of activation can be detected in locations which suffer from signal voids in GE-EPI experiments, the main loci of activation in a Stroop experiment are not necessarily to be expected in these regions
  • A small region of artifactual activation is visible outside the brain in Fig. 3, which is probably caused by coherent eye movement: the eyes may clearly be im
  • The bottom plot shows that a clear poststimulus undershoot can be detected. In this paper it has been shown for the first time that spin-echo EPI at 3 T is sufficiently sensitive to be used in a cognitive functional magnetic resonance imaging study, albeit with a reduction in Z score of about a factor of 3, when the different powers of the two experiments are taken into account
  • Comparing the results presented in this paper with those of the previous study it should be borne in mind that this is a historical comparison, as indicated in the Introduction; the aim of this paper is to assess the utility of SE-EPI at 3 T for cognitive studies
  • The sensitivity of T2-weighted fMR at 1.5 T is probably too low for use in cognitive studies, at field strengths of 3 T and above it should prove a valuable alternative to the more conventional T*2-weighted sequences and make the ventromedial cortex more readily accessible to functional magnetic resonance imaging investigations

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