Intel® Parallel Computing Center at the Computational Radiology Laboratory

Principal Investigators:

Dr. Simon K. Warfield, Ph.D. is the Thorne Griscom Chair and Professor of Radiology at Harvard Medical School, the Director of the Computational Radiology Laboratory (CRL), and the Director of Research of the Department of Radiology at Boston Children’s Hospital.

Dr. Benoit Scherrer, Ph.D. is Instructor of Radiology at Harvard Medical School.

Description:

The focus of our center is the development of innovative imaging techniques to see the structure of the brain. A central focus of our work is the study of the normal development of the brain, and the characterization of abnormalities of brain development and disorders. Many common disorders of the brain are disconnection syndromes, which arise from deficits or alterations in the connectivity of neural circuits. We are developing new capabilities for directly imaging the connectivity and microstructural integrity of neural circuits.

Magnetic Resonance Imaging allows us to probe the microstructural environment of brain tissue. However, reconstruction of images to enable diagnosis, the assessment of the evolution of brain injury, and the characterization of neural circuits, is computationally expensive, time consuming and difficult to do.  Our research goal is to modernize medical image computing software to enable these new capabilities.

Modern computer hardware features enhance cache performance, vectorization performance and multithreading performance for parallel algorithms, and exploiting these advances requires improved data structures and the development of innovative new algorithms and new mathematical approaches. These contributions are necessary to bring imaging of the microstructure of neural circuits into widespread use.

Our algorithms and software discoveries will provide every neuroscientist and radiologist with a new ability to rapidly assess the microstructural integrity of neural circuits, opening up opportunities to further our understanding of normal brain development and brain disorders, to diagnose disconnection syndromes for the first time, and to ultimately guide interventions by direct imaging of response to treatment.

Related Website:

Visit the Computational Radiology Laboratory website at http://www.crl.med.harvard.edu

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