Education & Certifications
BS, University of Southern California, Biomedical Engineering (1995)
MS, University of Virginia, Biomedical Engineering (1998)
PhD (not completed), Unviersity of California - Los Angeles, Biomedical Physics (2000)
Right arcuate fasciculus abnormality in chronic fatigue syndrome.
2015; 274 (2): 517-526
Purpose To identify whether patients with chronic fatigue syndrome ( CFS chronic fatigue syndrome ) have differences in gross brain structure, microscopic structure, or brain perfusion that may explain their symptoms. Materials and Methods Fifteen patients with CFS chronic fatigue syndrome were identified by means of retrospective review with an institutional review board-approved waiver of consent and waiver of authorization. Fourteen age- and sex-matched control subjects provided informed consent in accordance with the institutional review board and HIPAA. All subjects underwent 3.0-T volumetric T1-weighted magnetic resonance (MR) imaging, with two diffusion-tensor imaging ( DTI diffusion-tensor imaging ) acquisitions and arterial spin labeling ( ASL arterial spin labeling ). Open source software was used to segment supratentorial gray and white matter and cerebrospinal fluid to compare gray and white matter volumes and cortical thickness. DTI diffusion-tensor imaging data were processed with automated fiber quantification, which was used to compare piecewise fractional anisotropy ( FA fractional anisotropy ) along 20 tracks. For the volumetric analysis, a regression was performed to account for differences in age, handedness, and total intracranial volume, and for the DTI diffusion-tensor imaging , FA fractional anisotropy was compared piecewise along tracks by using an unpaired t test. The open source software segmentation was used to compare cerebral blood flow as measured with ASL arterial spin labeling . Results In the CFS chronic fatigue syndrome population, FA fractional anisotropy was increased in the right arcuate fasciculus (P = .0015), and in right-handers, FA fractional anisotropy was also increased in the right inferior longitudinal fasciculus ( ILF inferior longitudinal fasciculus ) (P = .0008). In patients with CFS chronic fatigue syndrome , right anterior arcuate FA fractional anisotropy increased with disease severity (r = 0.649, P = .026). Bilateral white matter volumes were reduced in CFS chronic fatigue syndrome (mean ± standard deviation, 467 581 mm(3) ± 47 610 for patients vs 504 864 mm(3) ± 68 126 for control subjects, P = .0026), and cortical thickness increased in both right arcuate end points, the middle temporal (T = 4.25) and precentral (T = 6.47) gyri, and one right ILF inferior longitudinal fasciculus end point, the occipital lobe (T = 5.36). ASL arterial spin labeling showed no significant differences. Conclusion Bilateral white matter atrophy is present in CFS chronic fatigue syndrome . No differences in perfusion were noted. Right hemispheric increased FA fractional anisotropy may reflect degeneration of crossing fibers or strengthening of short-range fibers. Right anterior arcuate FA fractional anisotropy may serve as a biomarker for CFS chronic fatigue syndrome . © RSNA, 2014 Online supplemental material is available for this article.
View details for DOI 10.1148/radiol.14141079
View details for PubMedID 25353054
Aberrant parietal cortex developmental trajectories in girls with Turner syndrome and related visual-spatial cognitive development: a preliminary study.
American journal of medical genetics. Part B, Neuropsychiatric genetics : the official publication of the International Society of Psychiatric Genetics
2014; 165B (6): 531-540
Turner syndrome (TS) arises from partial or complete absence of the X-chromosome in females. Girls with TS show deficits in visual-spatial skills as well as reduced brain volume and surface area in the parietal cortex which supports these cognitive functions. Thus, measuring the developmental trajectory of the parietal cortex and the associated visual-spatial cognition in TS may provide novel insights into critical brain-behavior associations. In this longitudinal study, we acquired structural MRI data and assessed visual-spatial skills in 16 (age: 8.23 ± 2.5) girls with TS and 13 age-matched controls over two time-points. Gray and white matter volume, surface area and cortical thickness were calculated from surfaced based segmentation of bilateral parietal cortices, and the NEPSY Arrows subtest was used to assess visual-spatial ability. Volumetric and cognitive scalars were modeled to obtain estimates of age-related change. The results show aberrant growth of white matter volume (P = 0.011, corrected) and surface area (P = 0.036, corrected) of the left superior parietal regions during childhood in girls with TS. Other parietal sub-regions were significantly smaller in girls with TS at both time-points but did not show different growth trajectories relative to controls. Furthermore, we found that visual-spatial skills showed a widening deficit for girls with TS relative to controls (P = 0.003). Young girls with TS demonstrate an aberrant trajectory of parietal cortical and cognitive development during childhood. Elucidating aberrant neurodevelopmental trajectories in this population is critical for determining specific stages of brain maturation that are particularly dependent on TS-related genetic and hormonal factors. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
View details for DOI 10.1002/ajmg.b.32256
View details for PubMedID 25044604
Cognitive and Behavioral Correlates of Caudate Subregion Shape Variation in Fragile X Syndrome
HUMAN BRAIN MAPPING
2014; 35 (6): 2861-2868
Individuals with fragile X syndrome (FXS) exhibit frontal lobe-associated cognitive and behavioral deficits, including impaired general cognitive abilities, perseverative behaviors, and social difficulties. Neural signals related to these functions are communicated through frontostriatal circuits, which connect with distinct regions of the caudate nucleus (CN). Enlargement of the CN is the most robust and reproduced neuroanatomical abnormality in FXS, but very little is known on how this affects behavioral/cognitive outcomes in this condition. Here, we investigated topography within focal regions of the CN associated with prefrontal circuitry and its link with aberrant behavior and intellect in FXS. Imaging data were acquired from 48 individuals with FXS, 28 IQ-matched controls without FXS (IQ-CTL), and 36 typically developing controls (TD-CTL). Of the total participant count, cognitive and behavioral assessment data were obtained from 44 individuals with FXS and 27 participants in the IQ-CTL group. CN volume and topography were compared between groups. Correlations were performed between CN topography and cognitive as well as behavioral measures within FXS and IQ-CTL groups. As expected, the FXS group had larger CN compared with both IQ-CTL and TD-CTL groups. Correlations between focal CN topography and frontal lobe-associated cognitive and behavioral deficits in the FXS group supported the hypothesis that CN enlargement is related to abnormal orbitofrontal-caudate and dorsolateral-caudate circuitry in FXS. These findings deepen our understanding of neuroanatomical mechanisms underlying cognitive-behavioral problems in FXS and hold promise for informing future behavioral and psychopharmacological interventions targeting specific neural pathways.
View details for DOI 10.1002/hbm.22376
View details for Web of Science ID 000334555100028
View details for PubMedID 24038999
Alterations in white matter structure in young children with type 1 diabetes.
2014; 37 (2): 332-340
To investigate whether type 1 diabetes affects white matter (WM) structure in a large sample of young children.Children (ages 4 to <10 years) with type 1 diabetes (n = 127) and age-matched nondiabetic control subjects (n = 67) had diffusion weighted magnetic resonance imaging scans in this multisite neuroimaging study. Participants with type 1 diabetes were assessed for HbA1c history and lifetime adverse events, and glucose levels were monitored using a continuous glucose monitor (CGM) device and standardized measures of cognition.Between-group analysis showed that children with type 1 diabetes had significantly reduced axial diffusivity (AD) in widespread brain regions compared with control subjects. Within the type 1 diabetes group, earlier onset of diabetes was associated with increased radial diffusivity (RD) and longer duration was associated with reduced AD, reduced RD, and increased fractional anisotropy (FA). In addition, HbA1c values were significantly negatively associated with FA values and were positively associated with RD values in widespread brain regions. Significant associations of AD, RD, and FA were found for CGM measures of hyperglycemia and glucose variability but not for hypoglycemia. Finally, we observed a significant association between WM structure and cognitive ability in children with type 1 diabetes but not in control subjects.These results suggest vulnerability of the developing brain in young children to effects of type 1 diabetes associated with chronic hyperglycemia and glucose variability.
View details for DOI 10.2337/dc13-1388
View details for PubMedID 24319123
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3898758
Brain morphology in children with 47, XYY syndrome: a voxel- and surface-based morphometric study.
Genes, brain, and behavior
2014; 13 (2): 127-134
The neurocognitive and behavioral profile of individuals with 47,XYY is increasingly documented; however, very little is known about the effect of a supernumerary Y-chromosome on brain development. Establishing the neural phenotype associated with 47,XYY may prove valuable in clarifying the role of Y-chromosome gene dosage effects, a potential factor in several neuropsychiatric disorders that show a prevalence bias toward males, including autism spectrum disorders. Here, we investigated brain structure in 10 young boys with 47,XYY and 10 age-matched healthy controls by combining voxel-based morphometry (VBM) and surface-based morphometry (SBM). The VBM results show the existence of altered gray matter volume (GMV) in the insular and parietal regions of 47,XYY relative to controls, changes that were paralleled by extensive modifications in white matter (WM) bilaterally in the frontal and superior parietal lobes. The SBM analyses corroborated these findings and revealed the presence of abnormal surface area and cortical thinning in regions with abnormal GMV and WMV. Overall, these preliminary results demonstrate a significant impact of a supernumerary Y-chromosome on brain development, provide a neural basis for the motor, speech and behavior regulation difficulties associated with 47,XYY and may relate to sexual dimorphism in these areas.
View details for DOI 10.1111/gbb.12107
View details for PubMedID 24308542
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3918511
Cortical Brain Morphology in Young, Estrogen-Naive, and Adolescent, Estrogen-Treated Girls with Turner Syndrome
2013; 23 (9): 2159-2168
Turner syndrome (TS) is a genetic condition that permits direct investigation of the complex interaction among genes, hormones, behavior, and brain development. Here, we used automated segmentation and surface-based morphometry to characterize the differences in brain morphology in children (n = 30) and adolescents (n = 16) with TS relative to age- and sex-matched control groups (n = 21 and 24, respectively). Our results show that individuals with TS, young and adolescent, present widespread reduction of gray matter volume, white matter volume and surface area (SA) over both parietal and occipital cortices bilaterally, as well as enlarged amygdala. In contrast to the young cohort, adolescents with TS showed significantly larger mean cortical thickness and significantly smaller total SA compared with healthy controls. Exploratory developmental analyses suggested aberrant regional brain maturation in the parahippocampal gyrus and orbitofrontal regions from childhood to adolescence in TS. These findings show the existence of abnormal brain morphology early in development in TS, but also suggest the presence of altered neurodevelopmental trajectories in some regions, which could potentially be the consequences of estrogen deficiency, both pre- and postnatally.
View details for DOI 10.1093/cercor/bhs195
View details for Web of Science ID 000322661100013
View details for PubMedID 22806268
Genomic imprinting effects of the x chromosome on brain morphology.
journal of neuroscience
2013; 33 (19): 8567-8574
There is increasing evidence that genomic imprinting, a process by which certain genes are expressed in a parent-of-origin-specific manner, can influence neurogenetic and psychiatric manifestations. While some data suggest possible imprinting effects of the X chromosome on physical and cognitive characteristics in humans, there is no compelling evidence that X-linked imprinting affects brain morphology. To address this issue, we investigated regional cortical volume, thickness, and surface area in 27 healthy controls and 40 prepubescent girls with Turner syndrome (TS), a condition caused by the absence of one X chromosome. Of the young girls with TS, 23 inherited their X chromosome from their mother (X(m)) and 17 from their father (X(p)). Our results confirm the existence of significant differences in brain morphology between girls with TS and controls, and reveal the presence of a putative imprinting effect among the TS groups: girls with X(p) demonstrated thicker cortex than those with X(m) in the temporal regions bilaterally, while X(m) individuals showed bilateral enlargement of gray matter volume in the superior frontal regions compared with X(p). These data suggest the existence of imprinting effects of the X chromosome that influence both cortical thickness and volume during early brain development, and help to explain variability in cognitive and behavioral manifestations of TS with regard to the parental origin of the X chromosome.
View details for DOI 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.5810-12.2013
View details for PubMedID 23658194
Topological properties of large-scale structural brain networks in children with familial risk for reading difficulties
2013; 71: 260-274
Developmental dyslexia is a neurobiological deficit characterized by persistent difficulty in learning to read in children and adults who otherwise possess normal intelligence. Functional and structural connectivity data suggest that developmental dyslexia could be a disconnection syndrome. However, whether abnormalities in connectivity exist in beginning readers at-risk for reading difficulties is unknown. Using graph-theoretical analysis, we investigated differences in global and regional topological properties of structural brain networks in 42 beginning readers with (FH+) and without (FH-) familial risk for reading difficulties. We constructed separate structural correlation networks based on measures of surface area and cortical thickness. Results revealed changes in topological properties in brain regions known to be abnormal in dyslexia (left supramarginal gyrus, left inferior frontal gyrus) in the FH+ group mainly in the network constructed from measures of cortical surface area. We also found alterations in topological properties in regions that are not often advertised as dyslexia but nonetheless play important role in reading (left posterior cingulate, hippocampus, and left precentral gyrus). To our knowledge, this is the first report of altered topological properties of structural correlation networks in children at risk for reading difficulty, and motivates future studies that examine the mechanisms underlying how these brain networks may mediate the influences of family history on reading outcome.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2013.01.013
View details for Web of Science ID 000316154400026
View details for PubMedID 23333415
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3655726
Maternal history of reading difficulty is associated with reduced language-related gray matter in beginning readers
2012; 59 (3): 3021-3032
Family history and poor preliteracy skills (referred to here as familial and behavioral risk, respectively) are critical predictors of developmental dyslexia. This study systematically investigated the independent contribution of familial and behavioral risks on brain structures, which had not been explored in past studies. We also examined the differential effects of maternal versus paternal history on brain morphometry, and familial risk dimensionally versus categorically, which were also novel aspects of the study. We assessed 51 children (5 to 6 years of age) with varying degrees of familial and behavioral risks for developmental dyslexia and examined associations with brain morphometry. We found that greater maternal history of reading disability was associated with smaller bilateral prefrontal and parieto-temporal gray, but not white matter volumes. Regressing out behavioral risk, socioeconomic status, and maternal education and other confounds did not change the results. No such relationship was observed for paternal reading history and behavioral risk. Results of cortical surface area and thickness further showed that there was a significant negative relationship between cortical surface area (but not thickness) and greater severity of maternal history, in particular within the left inferior parietal lobule, suggesting prenatal influence of maternal history on children's brain morphometry. The results suggested greater maternal, possibly prenatal, influence on language-related brain structures. These results help to guide future neuroimaging research focusing on environmental and genetic influences and provide new information that may help predict which child will develop dyslexia in the future.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2011.10.024
View details for Web of Science ID 000299494000100
View details for PubMedID 22023744
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3628690
BOLD and CBV-weighted functional magnetic resonance imaging of the rat somatosensory system
MAGNETIC RESONANCE IN MEDICINE
2006; 55 (2): 316-324
A multislice spin echo EPI sequence was used to obtain functional MR images of the entire rat brain with blood oxygenation level dependent (BOLD) and cerebral blood volume (CBV) contrast at 11.7 T. Maps of activation incidence were created by warping each image to the Paxinos rat brain atlas and marking the extent of the activated area. Incidence maps for BOLD and CBV were similar, but activation in draining veins was more prominent in the BOLD images than in the CBV images. Cerebellar activation was observed along the surface in BOLD images, but in deeper regions in the CBV images. Both effects may be explained by increased signal dropout and distortion in the EPI images after administration of the ferumoxtran-10 contrast agent for CBV fMRI. CBV-weighted incidence maps were also created for 10, 20, and 30 mg Fe/kg doses of ferumoxtran-10. The magnitude of the average percentage change during stimulation increased from 4.9% with the 10 mg Fe/kg dose to 8.7% with the 30-mg Fe/kg dose. Incidence of activation followed a similar trend.
View details for DOI 10.1002/mrm.20744
View details for Web of Science ID 000235326500013
View details for PubMedID 16372281
Functional MRI of the rodent somatosensory pathway using multislice echo planar imaging
MAGNETIC RESONANCE IN MEDICINE
2004; 52 (1): 89-99
A multislice EPI sequence was used to obtain functional MR images of the entire rat brain with BOLD contrast at 11.7 T. Ten to 11 slices covering the rat brain, with an in-plane resolution of 300 microm, provided enough sensitivity to detect activation in brain regions known to be involved in the somatosensory pathway during stimulation of the forelimbs. These regions were identified by warping a digitized rat brain atlas to each set of images. Data analysis was constrained to four major areas of the somatosensory pathway: primary and secondary somatosensory cortices, thalamus, and cerebellum. Incidence maps were generated. Electrical stimulation at 3 Hz led to significant activation in the primary sensory cortex in all rats. Activation in the secondary sensory cortex and cerebellum was observed in 70% of the studies, while thalamic activation was observed in 40%. The amplitude of activation was measured for each area, and average response time courses were calculated. Finally, the frequency dependence of the response to forepaw stimulation was measured in each of the activated areas. Optimal activation occurred in all areas at 3 Hz. These results demonstrate that whole-brain fMRI can be performed on rodents at 11.7 T to probe a well-defined neural network.
View details for DOI 10.1002/mrm.20114
View details for Web of Science ID 000222491700013
View details for PubMedID 15236371
Ultrasonic measurement of breast tissue motion and the implications for velocity estimation
ULTRASOUND IN MEDICINE AND BIOLOGY
1997; 23 (7): 1047-1057
A high-resolution study of breast tissue motion during cardiac systole and respiration is presented. An experimental system was designed to achieve a velocity resolution on the order of 1 mm/s with high spatial resolution. The peak velocity of tissue motion estimated during cardiac systole ranged from 0.2 mm/s to 5.6 mm/s among the subjects studied. It is shown that motion due to the cardiac cycle is less significant when the subject is positioned on the side rather than supine. The mean tissue velocity among subjects in the supine position is 2.88 mm/s and drops to 0.81 mm/s for the side position, with a corresponding spatial displacement of 0.095 mm, dropping to 0.027 mm. The velocity profiles indicate that 100 ms is required for the entire ribcage contraction-relaxation process to occur. Experiments using a prone biopsy table show the almost complete elimination of tissue motion due to cardiac systole, suggesting that the use of the table eliminates this motion, thus allowing for high-resolution blood velocity estimates. Features resulting from respiratory motion are also presented. We found this motion to be of a much longer time duration, and of a much higher magnitude, with velocities as high as 29 mm/s. The implications of the study on the high-resolution estimation of blood velocity and high-resolution breast imaging are discussed.
View details for PubMedID 9330448