Novel Quantification Paradigm in Parkinsonís Disease Neurochemical Imaging
Rapid Response Innovation Awards, 2013
The research from this grant has continued with the supplementary grant:
Objective/Rationale: † † † † † ††
Parkinsonís disease imaging using dopamine transporter (DAT) single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) technology conveys important information on brain dopamine activity at the pixel level. However, a commonly used method called regional intensity averaging oversimplifies the available information. In this project, researchers will explore a new way to measure dopamine transporter activity in Parkinsonís disease (PD) that applies shape and texture analyses to DAT SPECT images.
Scientists will analyze DAT scans from the Parkinsonís Progression Markers Initiative (PPMI) dataset. They will utilize a range of shape and texture analysis techniques, and investigate how the resolutions obtained in SPECT imaging impact the applicability of such techniques. Furthermore, data obtained from the various analysis methods will be combined using advanced mathematical algorithms to identity data combinations that are most important to characterize disease progression at various stages.
Relevance to Diagnosis/Treatment of Parkinsonís Disease: † † † † † † † † † ††
The successful completion of this study could have important clinical implications. Enhanced sensitivity to subtle neuroanatomic changes is expected to provide novel insights into the relationship between dopaminergic alterations and PD manifestations. In addition to aiding identification of early disease, these techniques, if successful, can be applied to assess the impact of disease-modifying therapies.
Anticipated Outcome: † † † † †
These researchers expect to demonstrate DAT change between early PD patients and healthy controls in the putamen, the most affected region. They also expect to demonstrate an ability to detect subtle abnormalities in dopaminergic function that might be associated with different manifestations of disease. Additionally, this work could enable future efforts towards understanding of subjects having scans without evidence of dopaminergic deficit (SWEDDs).
Assistant Professor at Johns Hopkins University
Location: Baltimore, Maryland, United States
Professor at University of British Columbia
Location: Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada