optic-nerve-imaging.jpgOPTIC NERVE IMAGING

The measurement of optic nerve atrophy may be a sensitive marker of disease progression in multiple sclerosis (MS). However, measuring is difficult in practice due to both limited resolution of the nerve on MRI and patient motion. Furthermore, conventional measures of the cross-sectional area (CSA) are highly sensitive to the angle at which the nerve is imaged. The Buffalo Neuroimaging Analysis Center (BNAC) explored and validated a novel method for optic nerve measurement capable of sub-voxel accuracy and compensating for motion. This method has shown precision with a sub-voxel factor of 8 (8 times the resolution of raw MRIs), and even greater gains with the increased signal-to-noise ratio of 3.0T imaging. It has also demonstrated clinical validity in MS patients. Furthermore, its model-based approach makes it much less susceptible to rotation than standard CSA approaches.