Welcome Images Awards

Wiring of the human brain

ZEYNEP M SAYGIN

Bird’s-eye view of nerve fibres in a normal, healthy adult human brain.

Nerve_fibres_in_a_healthy_adult_human_brain,_MRI_larger

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The back of the brain is on the left of the image and the left side of the brain is at the top of the image. Brain cells communicate with each other through these nerve fibres, which have been visualised by diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance imaging (DWI MRI). Diffusion-weighted imaging is a specialised type of MRI scan; here it is measuring the movement of water in many directions in order to reconstruct the orientation of the nerve fibres. As this is a 3D image the direction of the nerve fibres has been colour-coded. Fibres travelling up and down (between the top of the head and neck) are coloured blue, fibres travelling forwards and backwards (between the face and back of the head) are coloured green, and fibres travelling left and right (between the ears) are coloured red. These patterns of connectivity in the brain are being used to better understand brain function and how this changes in people as they develop or in those with dyslexia. This image appears as a result of our MIT partnership.

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