Measuring macroscopic brain connections in vivo

Saad Jbabdi, Stamatios N. Sotiropoulos, Suzanne N. Haber, David C. Van Essen, Timothy E. Behrens

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

223 Scopus citations


Decades of detailed anatomical tracer studies in non-human animals point to a rich and complex organization of long-range white matter connections in the brain. State-of-the art in vivo imaging techniques are striving to achieve a similar level of detail in humans, but multiple technical factors can limit their sensitivity and fidelity. In this review, we mostly focus on magnetic resonance imaging of the brain. We highlight some of the key challenges in analyzing and interpreting in vivo connectomics data, particularly in relation to what is known from classical neuroanatomy in laboratory animals. We further illustrate that, despite the challenges, in vivo imaging methods can be very powerful and provide information on connections that is not available by any other means.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1546-1555
Number of pages10
JournalNature neuroscience
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 1 2015


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