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A recent study found differences in localised regions of the cortex between the YAC128 mouse model of Huntington's Disease (HD) and wild-type mice. There are, however, few tools to automatically examine shape differences in the cortices of mice. This paper describes an algorithm for automatically measuring cortical thickness across the entire cortex from MRI of fixed mouse brain specimens. An analysis of the variance of the method showed that, on average, a 50 microm (0.05 mm) localised difference in cortical thickness can be measured using MR scans. Applying these methods to 8-month-old YAC128 mouse model mice representing an early stage of HD, we found an increase in cortical thickness in the sensorimotor cortex, and also revealed regions wherein decreasing striatal volume correlated with increasing cortical thickness, indicating a potential compensatory response.

Original publication




Journal article



Publication Date





243 - 251


Algorithms, Animals, Brain Mapping, Cerebral Cortex, Disease Models, Animal, Female, Huntington Disease, Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Male, Mice, Mice, Inbred C57BL