Correlation between gray matter density-adjusted brain perfusion and age using brain MR images of 202 healthy children

Yasuyuki Taki, Hiroshi Hashizume, Yuko Sassa, Hikaru Takeuchi, Kai Wu, Michiko Asano, Kohei Asano, Hiroshi Fukuda, Ryuta Kawashima

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74 Citations (Scopus)


We examined the correlation between brain perfusion and age using pulsed arterial spin-labeling (ASL) magnetic resonance images (MRI) in a large number of healthy children. We collected data on brain structural and ASL perfusion MRI in 202 healthy children aged 5-18 years. Structural MRI data were segmented and normalized, applying a voxel-based morphometric analysis. Perfusion MRI was normalized using the normalization parameter of the corresponding structural MRI. We calculated brain perfusion with an adjustment for gray matter density (BP-GMD) by dividing normalized ASL MRI by normalized gray matter segments in 22 regions. Next, we analyzed the correlation between BP-GMD and age in each region by estimating linear, quadratic, and cubic polynomial functions, using the Akaike information criterion. The correlation between BP-GMD and age showed an inverted U shape followed by a U-shaped trajectory in most regions. In addition, age at which BP-GMD was highest was different among the lobes and gray matter regions, and the BP-GMD association with age increased from the occipital to the frontal lobe via the temporal and parietal lobes. Our results indicate that higher order association cortices mature after the lower order cortices, and may help clarify the mechanisms of normal brain maturation from the viewpoint of brain perfusion.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1973-1985
Number of pages13
JournalHuman Brain Mapping
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 2011 Nov


  • Arterial spin labeling
  • Brain perfusion
  • Children
  • Gray matter
  • Magnetic resonance imaging


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