Next-generation Tractography for Mapping the Cortico-subthalamic “hyperdirect” Pathway in the Motor Cortex
The cortico-subthalamic “hyperdirect” pathway is a direct and fast white matter tract connecting frontal cortex and subthalamic nucleus (STN) in the basal ganglia. The therapeutic action of deep brain stimulation (DBS) of STN, a hugely successful treatment to ameliorate motor symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease (PD), may involve this pathway so its identification and characterisation are important to improve treatment efficacy. However, this tiny pathway is at the limits of current imaging resolution so requires cutting edge imaging and image analysis to delineate and study non-invasively. This project will employ and enhance the latest diffusion magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) protocols and tractography algorithms, using in a non-human primate model to acquire better understanding of the role of hyperdirect pathway in health and PD pathology.