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Diffusion Tensor MRI Brain Visualization

Overview

Diffusion tensor MRI is a new imaging modality with the potential to measure fiber-tract trajectories in fibrous soft tissues such as nerves, muscles, ligaments and tendons. However, the datasets produced are volumetric, with six values at each spatial location, and hence a significant challenge to visualize and understand. We are working on new geometric models that could well relate to the interesting structures in the tissue while representing the DTI data. We are also developing a virtual environment that displays geometric representations of the volume data and are gathering feedback on appropriate interaction and visualization techniques to tailor the prototype to two application areas. The applications we are working toward include studying changes in white-matter structures after gamma-knife capsulotomy and pre-operative planning for tumor surgery.

Several doctors have used our application and from their feedback, we concluded that the geometric models we used to represent the linear anisotropies well correlate with the major neural fiber bundles, the cave helps to visualize the complex geometric models, and traditional 2D section along with the 3D models helps visualizing the data.

Future work includes new geometric models that can get rid of the hard thresholding we now use, new scheme of interactivity in the cave, and tuning our application towards two application areas.

Publications

An Immersive Virtual Environment for DT-MRI Volume Visualization Applications: A Case Study, S. Zhang, C. Demiralp, D.F.Keefe, M. J. da Silva, D. H. Laidlaw, B. D. Greenberg, P.J. Basser, E.A. Chiocca,C. Pierpaoli T.S. Deisboeck, IEEE Visualization 2001, San Diago, October 2001
Visualizing Diffusion Tensor Volume Differences, M. J. da Silva, S. Zhang, C. Demiralp, and D. H. Laidlaw, IEEE Visualization 2001, San Diago, October 2001
Toward Application of Virtual Reality to Visualization of DT-MRI Volumes, S. Zhang, C. Demiralp, D.F.Keefe, M. J. da Silva, D. H. Laidlaw, B. D. Greenberg, P.J. Basser, E.A. Chiocca,C. Pierpaoli, T.S. Deisboeck, MICCAI 2001
Elucidating Neural Structure in Diffusion Tensor MRI Volumes using Streamtubes and Streamsurfaces, S. Zhang, and D. H. Laidlaw, ISMRM 2001.
Streamtubes and Streamsurfaces for Visualizing Diffusion Tensor MRI Volume Images, Song Zhang, Charles T. Curry, Daniel S. Morris, and D. H. Laidlaw, Visualization '00 Work in Progress, October, 2000. 
Visualizing Diffusion Tensor MR Images Using Streamtubes and Streamsurfaces, Song Zhang, Charles T. Curry, and Daniel S. Morris, D. H. Laidlaw, poster at Human Brain Project annual meeting, NIH, Bethesda, MD, May 2000. 

Development issues

Internal page for design and development issues.

Researchers

Song Zhang
Cagatay Demiralp
David Laidlaw

Alumni
Marco da Silva

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