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Quantification of volumetric morphometry and optical property in the cortex of human cerebellum at micrometer resolution

By Chao J. Liu, William Ammon, Viviana Siless, Morgan Fogarty, Ruopeng Wang, Alessia Atzeni, Iman Aganj, Juan Eugenio Iglesias, Lilla Zollei, Bruce Fischl, Jeremy D Schmahmann, Hui Wang

Posted 28 Apr 2021
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/2021.04.27.441546

The surface of the human cerebellar cortex is much more tightly folded than the cerebral cortex. Volumetric analysis of cerebellar morphometry in magnetic resonance imaging studies suffers from insufficient resolution, and therefore has had limited impact on disease assessment. Automatic serial polarization-sensitive optical coherence tomography (as-PSOCT) is an emerging technique that offers the advantages of microscopic resolution and volumetric reconstruction of large-scale samples. In this study, we reconstructed multiple cubic centimeters of ex vivo human cerebellum tissue using as-PSOCT. The morphometric and optical properties of the cerebellar cortex across five subjects were quantified. While the molecular and granular layers exhibited similar mean thickness in the five subjects, the thickness varied greatly between the crown of the folium and the depth of the fissure in the granular layer within subjects. Layer-specific optical property remained homogenous within individual subjects but showed higher cross-subject variability than layer thickness. High-resolution volumetric morphometry and optical property maps of human cerebellar cortex revealed by as-PSOCT have great potential to advance our understanding of cerebellar function and diseases.

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