Investigation of Cerebrovascular Disease across Sexes and Neurodegenerative Disorders through Post-mortem Imaging and Histology
Over 600,000 Canadians currently live with different types of dementia, and more than 76,000 new dementia cases are diagnosed each year. In over 75% of the cases, there is evidence of damage to the blood vessels in the brain. We can study these vascular brain damages using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), to better understand how they affect the brain and identify which types of damage cause the most challenging problems in the patients. However, MRI does not provide sufficient information to determine the specific types and the underlying causes of these brain changes. Researchers therefore require data including post-mortem MRI
followed by histology assessments to be able to study the brains of dementia patients in more detail. However, currently no such datasets are available.
To overcome these challenges, we plan to create a database of brain MRI images and additional histology assessments that can be used by us and other scientists to study the different types of pathologies that exist in the brains of dementia patients. We will use artificial intelligence techniques to map and analyze these images to identify which types of damage are present in each brain. All of the data and tools will be made available to other researchers so that everyone can benefit from this research. By creating this open-access resource, researchers will be able to better understand how vascular problems in the brain contribute to development of dementia. This will in turn allow for development of new treatments to improve patients’ lives.
Mahsa Dadar , Centre de recherche de l’hôpital Douglas/Douglas Hospital Research Centre
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