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brain imaging

Advanced brain scanner allows neuroimaging in moving subjects

A new innovation in brain scanner technology promises high-resolution neuroimaging in subjects without restricting their head and body movements. Neurons are specialized cells that are designed to generate electrochemical signals. These signals are the currency used to transmit information across the body. Neurons connect the brain, spinal cord, and each nook and cranny of our body to form information highways, transmitting sensory and motor information to different cells and other neurons in the body in the form of electrical impulses. Electrical currents also produce a magnetic field, proportional to the magnitude of the current that is producing it.

SEEG: New Hope for Severe Epilepsy

One of the major challenges of using surgery to treat epilepsy has always been finding the place in the brain where the person’s seizures begin. The more precisely doctors can pinpoint this area, the better they can focus efforts for surgical treatment. This is especially important in the delicate landscape of the brain where surgeons work to remove as little tissue as possible. Now, a relatively new procedure called stereoelectroencephalography (SEEG) is significantly boosting success rates of epilepsy surgery. It allows doctors to be much more precise in targeting the origin of seizures, and gives hope to people with severe epilepsy. Before SEEG, the chances of eliminating seizures after epilepsy surgery were low — only about 20 to 30 percent. But now, SEEG has brought the rates of long-...

Study finds patients with focal epilepsy have widespread, abnormal connections in their brains

Patients with the most common form of focal epilepsy have widespread, abnormal connections in their brains that could provide clues toward diagnosis and treatment, according to a new study published online in the journal Radiology. Temporal lobe epilepsy is characterized by seizures emanating from the temporal lobes, which sit on each side of the brain just above the ear. Previously, experts believed that the condition was related to isolated injuries of structures within the temporal lobe, like the hippocampus. But recent research has implicated the default mode network (DMN), the set of brain regions activated during task-free introspection and deactivated during goal-directed behavior. The DMN consists of several hubs that are more active during the resting state. To learn more, researc...

Researchers find new way to help surgeons more accurately plan for epilepsy surgery

A brain imaging research team led by Simon Fraser University neuroscientist Dr. Ryan D’Arcy has found a new way to help surgeons more accurately plan for surgical treatment in epilepsy. The results of a recent study using magnetoencephalography (MEG) have been published in the field’s highest impact journal, Human Brain Mapping. To showcase the study, the journal highlighted the novel images of MEG activity on the August 2013 cover.

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