Do white matter anomalies modify cerebral connectivity?

As part of its call for “Computational Medical Imaging” projects, the FRM has retained the proposal presented by Bernard Mazoyer on “Biomarkers of early MRIs of age-related neuropathologies: automatic segmentation and impact on brain connectivity in the course of life”. The project will be carried out by a consortium of researchers from the GIN-IMN, the Bordeaux Population Health Center, the Max Planck Institute in Leipzig and the Peking Union Medical College Hospital.

Some cerebral phenotypes, such as atrophy or white matter abnormalities, are considered as early potential markers of age-related neuropathologies. Assessing the value of these biomarkers and their impact on brain structure and function requires the analysis of large image databases, which in turn requires new tools for automatic brain MRI analysis.

The WAIMEA project (White matter Anomalies Imaging Markers Early Assessment) aims to implement an unsupervised multivariate approach for segmentation and classification of two types of white matter abnormalities: hypersignals (yellow markers in illustration ) and perivascular spaces (green markers). The algorithm learning and testing phases will be carried out through two large multimodal cerebral MRI bases acquired in 4,000 young and elderly adults, including the MRI database of the i-Share cohort. The same databases will help to assess the early impact of abnormalities detected on adult brain connectivity.