Magnetic Resonance Neuroimaging Services (Core C)
With its IDD-specific expertise, Magnetic Resonance (MR) neuroimaging provides powerful methods for characterizing structural and functional properties of the brain associated with developmental disabilities. The field of neuroimaging spans from those who are developing basic sequences and newer imaging methodologies (usually physicists), to behavioral scientists with neuroimaging knowledge applying imaging to special populations, to those without neuroimaging expertise who are collaborating with neuroimagers. With its IDD-specific expertise, Core C serves as bridge for IDDRC researchers with the resources of the Vanderbilt University Institute of Imaging Science (VUIIS) by providing technical and financial support for studies that can benefit from these technologies. Core C personnel assist investigators at various stages of MR neuroimaging research.
Task Design Consultation and Presentation
Consultation on experimental design, including E-prime programming, development of audio-visual stimuli/cognitive task development, audiovisual system use, and facilitation of connections with other investigators who may have expertise in particular areas (e.g., attention).
Scanning children and vulnerable populations is more complex than scanning typically developing adults. The Core provides expertise and training in mock scanning procedures; at each stage, objective criteria are established.
Setting up new protocols at the VUIIS generally may require modifications depending on the researcher’s question. Additionally, newer and optimized technologies are constantly being developed by VUIIS bioengineers and physicists. Core C facilitates interactions with VUIIS for implementing MR sequences.
MR Neuroimaging Analysis
Two types of services are provided:
- Training of individuals to perform MR analyses
- Automated “standard” analyses
To reduce effort for investigators collecting and analyzing neuroimaging data, Core C will provide automated routines for exporting and organizing raw MR data collected at VUIIS. IDDRC investigators can further request Core C to automatically process their data using standard and customized methodologies. While there is up-front cost to building these automated systems, over their lifespan they save orders of magnitude of both time and effort.
Core C is available for data interpretation. The IDDRC holds monthly Neurodevelopmental Imaging meetings with Core members and IDDRC researchers as an avenue for discussing data interpretation, analyses, and grant ideas. In addition, one-on-one and small group consultation is available.
In addition, Core C personnel participate in workshops, seminars, and user group meetings. These presentations survey relevant imaging methods and application at both the beginning and advanced levels.
If you make use of these services or facilities, please acknowledge this support in publications, as required by the EKS NICHD.
Sample: "Research supported in this publication was supported by the EKS NICHD of the NIH under Award #U54HD083211. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the NIH."