Sunday, March 28, 2010

Neuropsychology Abstract of the Day: fMRI Tablet Touchscreen

Tam F, Churchill NW, Strother SC, & Graham SJ. A new tablet for writing and drawing during functional MRI.
Human Brain Mapping. 2010 Mar 24.

Writing and drawing are understudied with fMRI, partly for lack of a device that approximates these behaviors well while supporting task feedback and quantitative behavioral logging in the confines of the magnet. Consequently, we developed a tablet based on touchscreen technology that is accurate, reliable, relatively inexpensive, and fMRI compatible. After confirming fMRI compatibility, we conducted preliminary fMRI experiments examining the neural correlates of a widely used pen-and-paper neuropsychological assessment, the trail making test. In two subjects, we found left hemisphere frontal lobe activations similar to the major results of a previous group study, and we also noted individual differences mostly in the right hemisphere. These results demonstrate the utility of the new tablet for adaptations of pen-and-paper tests and suggest possible uses of the tablet for longitudinal, within-subjects studies of disease or therapy. We also discuss using the tablet for several other types of tests requiring many, continuous, or two-dimensional responses that were previously very difficult to perform during fMRI. Hum Brain Mapp, 2010. (c) 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

PMID: 20336688 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

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