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Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) to Launch New Brain Research Effort with Acquisition of Elekta MEG Technology
Date:3/9/2010

of the Martinos Imaging Center, will use MEG to study the neural and genetic basis of autism, dyslexia and other developmental disorders. By combining MEG with other brain imaging modalities, such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and electroencephalography (EEG), Dr. Gabrieli plans to search for differences in brain activation in subjects with different genetic variants that have been linked to these conditions. "Our goal is to correlate the changes in brain function with genetic risk factors, and in turn identify categories of patients for whom optimal treatment strategies could be tailored," he says.
  • Prof. Robert Desimone, director of the McGovern Institute, plans to study the neural basis of attention. Animal studies have indicated that high frequency brain waves known as gamma oscillations become synchronized across brain areas as these areas communicate with each other to control attention. He plans to extend this work to humans using MEG, and he hopes that this will provide new insights into the basis of diseases such as schizophrenia. "Gamma oscillations are disrupted in schizophrenia, and we think this may help explain why people with schizophrenia often experience difficulty organizing their thoughts and perceptions into a coherent and meaningful whole," Dr. Desimone explains.


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