• Radiologic Technology News

MRI Scanner Reveals New Brain Connections

Jan 22, 2016

New research employing a one-of-a-kind MRI scanner has revealed previously unseen connections in the human brain.

In a study published in the journal Brain Connectivity, researchers found proof of previously unidentified connections between regions of the brain known to play a role in homeostasis. Homeostasis is the process used by the body to seek and maintain a condition of balance within its internal environment, even when faced with external changes, such as the ability to maintain an internal temperature of about 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit, regardless of outside temperatures.

The research team analyzed six human subjects with no history of neurological, psychiatric or medical disease. The median age of the subjects was 27.5 years old.

In a press release, Christopher Pawela, Ph.D., one of the editors of the journal, had high praise for the MGH-USC Human Connectome MRI scanner used by study author Brian Edlow and his team.

"This study demonstrates the power of this unique instrument to unravel structural connections in brain regions that were previously difficult to image with conventional MRI scanners,” Pawela said.

The research could provide a basis for studying the potential role that abnormal connectivity may play in disorders of homeostasis, such as sudden death and epilepsy.

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