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Talk:Brain morphometry

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 Definition The quantitative study of structures in the brain, their differences between individuals, correlations with brain function, and changes of these characteristics over time. [d] [e]
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Schizophrenia is not clearly a neurodegenerative disease

Schizophrenia is not clearly a neurodegenerative disease. It is rather a neurodevelopmental disease and maybe there is also a subgroup of patients with a 'neuroprogressive' (means neurodegenerative) degeneration of (total and regional) gray matter volume. I would suggest to avoid saying schizophrenia is a neurodegenerative illness as Alzheimer. (It is the first time that I comment on article, therefore, please tell me if you think this is not the right place here.) ...said Stefan J. Borgwardt (talk) (Please sign your talk page posts by simply adding four tildes, ~~~~.)

Stefan, first of all, welcome! Very glad to see a new person here.

I would recommend that you simply edit the article as you think proper--please do--with a brief explanation here, if necessary. --Larry Sanger 17:56, 17 January 2009 (UTC)

More info

I did some basic online searching for "brain morphometry" and found some information, but I don't know if it's relevant since I don't know much about this stuff. But I'll include it here and let others decide whether to include it or not:--Thomas Wright Sulcer 01:12, 17 March 2010 (UTC)

  • Alcohol dependency has been linked to structural brain damage and cognitive impairment. To measure damage caused by alcohol dependency, brain morphometry has been used. A study in 2006 suggested that alcohol-dependency causes decreases of up to 20% of the gray matter in the dorsolateral frontal cortex region of the brain and up to 10% of the white matter in other regions of the brain such as the corpus callosum. Decreased gray matter was associated with an early age of first drinking in particular brain regions such as the cerebellum, brainstem or pons, and frontal regions.[1]
  • Brain morphometry using magnetic resonance imaging or MRI often requires several scans using a range of contrasts. When multiple passes are done, it's important that the edges of structures align precisely. Scientists are trying to find ways to reduce distortions for more accurate images of the brain.[2]
  • Scientists are using high-power mathematical and statistical methods to study curves in the brain. They take image data from an MRI and analyze it statistically to try to make sense of the image information. One method uses curvature scale space to try to represent brain contours to get meaningful shapes for analysis; another method is called statistical shape modelling to characterize how the shapes vary.[3]
  • Brain morphometry has been used to see if there are any negative effects on the brain because of violence by an "intimate partner" such as an abusive spouse and influences such as posttraumatic stress disorder; one study in 2002 looked at brains of female victims of intimate partner violence using magnetic resonance imaging techniques to see if the violence had any measurable effect. Researchers compared 17 nonvictimized brains with 22 victimized brains. The study was inconclusive and suggested that early trauma was more likely to account for variation.[4]
  • Brain morphometry has been used to test for brain structure differences in reading disability. A case-control study using twins compared brain volumes, in terms of cubic centimeters, of major brain regions including the neocortical subdivisions, subcortical structures, and midsagittal areas of three subdivisions of the corpus callosum. The 1999 study found that the sizes of the brain regions were basically similar, but that developmental patterns were somewhat different for those persons with reading disability.[5]
  • Brain morphometry analysis has revealed that persons with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), which includes autism, Asperger's syndrome and pervasive developmental disorder, don't have bigger or smaller brains measured by head and/or lobar brain matter volume, although ASD persons had significantly smaller cerebellar volume and a significantly larger volume of cerebrospinal fluid (but this was probably due to factors other than ASD).[6]


  1. Sandra Chanraud, Catherine Martelli, Francoise Delain, Nikoletta Kostogianni, Gwenaelle Douaud, Henri-Jean Aubin, Michel Reynaud and Jean-Luc Martinot. Brain Morphometry and Cognitive Performance in Detoxified Alcohol-Dependents with Preserved Psychosocial Functioning, Nature, 18 October 2006. Retrieved on 2010-03-14. “Automated whole-brain methods are valuable techniques for investigating the relationships between brain morphometry and executive functions.”
  2. van der Kouwe AJ, Benner T, Salat DH, Fischl B.. Brain morphometry with multiecho MPRAGE., U.S. National Library of Medicine -- National Institutes of Health, 2008 Apr 1. Retrieved on 2010-03-14. “In brain morphometry studies using magnetic resonance imaging, several scans with a range of contrasts are often collected. The images may be locally distorted due to imperfect shimming in regions where magnetic susceptibility changes rapidly, and all scans may not be distorted in the same way. In multispectral studies it is critical that the edges of structures align precisely across all contrasts. The MPRAGE (MPR) sequence has excellent contrast properties for cortical segmentation, while multiecho FLASH (MEF) provides better contrast for segmentation of subcortical structures.”
  3. Daniel Valdes and Abhir Bhalerao -- Department of Computer Science. Local Shape Modelling for Brain Morphometry using Curvature Scale Space,, 2010-03-14. Retrieved on 2010-03-14.
  4. Christine Fennema-Notestineab, Murray B SteinabCorresponding Author Information, Colleen M Kennedya, Sarah L Archibaldb, Terry L Jerniganab. Brain morphometry in female victims of intimate partner violence with and without posttraumatic stress disorder, Biological Psychiatry, 1 December 2002. Retrieved on 2010-03-14. “Volume 52, Issue 11, Pages 1089-1101”
  5. B. F. Pennington, PhD, P. A. Filipek, MD, D. Lefly, PhD, J. Churchwell, MA, D. N. Kennedy, PhD, J. H. Simon, MD, PhD, C. M. Filley, MD, A. Galaburda, MD, M. Alarcon, PhD and J. C. DeFries, PhD. Brain morphometry in reading-disabled twins, American Academy of Neurology, 1999;53:723. Retrieved on 2010-03-14. “RESULTS: Controlling for age, gender, and IQ, the authors found a significant group-by-structure interaction for the major neocortical subdivisions (p = 0.002), reflecting a different developmental pattern in the RD group, with the insula and anterior superior neocortex being smaller and the retrocallosal cortex being larger in the RD group. In contrast, they found no group main or interaction effects for the subcortical or callosal structures. The pattern of results was essentially the same in subjects without ADHD.”
  6. B. Hallahana1a, E. M. Daly2, G. McAlonana, E. Lotha, F. Toala, F. O'Briena, D. Robertsona, S. Halesa, C. Murphya, K. C. Murphya and D. G. M. Murphya. Brain morphometry volume in autistic spectrum disorder: a magnetic resonance imaging study of adults, Psychological Medicine -- 39:337-346 Cambridge University Press, 2009. Retrieved on 2010-03-14. “Method: Hence, we measured head size (intracranial volume), and the bulk volume of ventricular and peripheral cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), lobar brain, and cerebellum in 114 people with ASD and 60 controls aged between 18 and 58 years. The ASD sample included 80 people with Asperger's syndrome, 28 with autism and six with PDD-NOS. Results: There was no significant between-group difference in head and/or lobar brain matter volume. However, compared with controls, each ASD subgroup had a significantly smaller cerebellar volume, and a significantly larger volume of peripheral CSF. Conclusions: Within ASD adults, the bulk volume of cerebellum is reduced irrespective of diagnostic subcategory. Also the significant increase in peripheral CSF may reflect differences in cortical maturation and/or ageing”
Thanks for these — I will take a look. --Daniel Mietchen 02:40, 17 March 2010 (UTC)

Suggested rewrite of LEDE paragraph

As a layman I found the LEDE hard to grasp; and I'm not sure if I understand brain morphometry as well as experts. But I thought perhaps a paragraph preceding the current LEDE might be helpful to help non-experts like me get a grasp of what this stuff is about; but I'm not sure if it's right or valuable, but here goes. I'm back to writing the Aeneid.--Thomas Wright Sulcer 16:00, 17 March 2010 (UTC)

Brain morphometry is the measurement of changes in brain structure. Since autopsy-like dissection is impossible on living brains without killing a person, brain morphometry starts with noninvasive neuroimaging data usually from magnetic resonance imaging or MRI machines. Then, the MRI images are digitized which allows researchers to analyze the brain images further by using advanced mathematical and statistical methods such as mapping, shape analysis, density studies, and so forth. It's possible to create three-dimensional digitized maps of areas of the brain. This allows researchers to measure brain areas in terms of shape, mass, volume, and arrive at more specific information such as the encephalization quotient, the distribution of grey matter and white matter, the amount of cerebrospinal fluid, gyrification, cortical thickness, and other variables. The techniques make it possible to measure the mass of a brain'shippocampus without dissecting it and weighing it. It's even possible to measure the relative size of the primary versus secondary visual cortex. It is a new and rapidly advancing field of study which has an expanding number of purposes: studying disease, exploring cause-and-effect relationships, understanding brain disorders, mapping tumors, and generally trying to learn how the brain works. Some scientists focus on improving brain morphometry techniques themselves.--Thomas Wright Sulcer 16:00, 17 March 2010 (UTC)