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Home < Collaboration:UNC-PNL


  • Reviewing shape analysis with current NAMIC data
  • Establishing a concrete plan and schedule for collaborations. Target projects are shape analysis and statistical analysis of anisotropy measure along fibers.


  • 11:15am: Open Discussion with PNL on immediate and future collaborations plans.
    • Establish what UNC needs from PNL and PNL from UNC.
    • Resolve technical issues such authorship, clinical data, etc...


  • Martin Styner (UNC)
  • Isabelle Corouge (UNC)
  • Martha Shenton (PNL)
  • James Levitt (PNL)
  • Marek Kubicki (PNL)
  • C-F Westin (BWH)
  • Marc Niethammer (PNL)
  • Sylvain Bouix (PNL)

Discussion overview

Statistical shape analysis:

Caudate (SPD):

  • Spherical harmonics for shape description
  • local/global/parcellated significance and anlysis
  • Local and global differences on R, but only local on L
  • main shape difference in caudate head, small effect in caudate tail
  • volume reduction in SPD

Corpus callosum:

  • model based 2D segmentation of corpus callosum
  • DTI fiber tracking based corpus callosum subdivision method (coloring based on connection to white matter parcellation -- given as a template) results in probabilistic subdivision of the corpus callosum


  • quantitative analysis of DTI data (along fibers; statistics within fiber bundles)

PNL provides:

  • an interpretation of the shape differences seen in SPD vs control group caudates
  • a larger dataset to improve the statistical significance (chronic SZ?)

UNC provides:

  • statistical shape analysis software
  • fiber viewer and fiber tracking software (in Namic sandbox see also software here)
  • tools for quantitiative analysis of DTI data (statistics of diffusion metrics and tensors along fibers and across fibers within a fiber bundle)


  • very small sample sizes (-> PNL will provide more and different data)
  • local shape difference significance measures are very conservative or not conservative enough (is there a middle groud?)
  • not clear how to compare fiber tracts between subjects (how to align?)

Possible future work:

  • Do statistical caudate analysis for chronic SZ (expect larger changes than for SPD)?
  • Hippocampus study using the UNC software?