Christian Mitter1, Peter Christian Brugger2, Laura Perju-Dumbrava3, Daniela Prayer1, Gregor Kasprian1
1Department of Radiology, Division of Neuroradiology, Medical University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria; 2Center of Anatomy & Cell Biology, Medical University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria; 3Institute of Neurology, Medical University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria
So far the 3-dimensional morphology of major white matter association fiber tracts and their development has not been successfully visualized and characterized in the living human fetus in utero. We used DTI based tractography to depict major association fiber pathways in 8 unsedated fetuses between gestational week 20 and 34. Non motion-degraded high quality 1.5 Tesla axial diffusion tensor sequences were selected and postprocessing with tractography was performed by using a multiple ROI approach. By using tractography we were able to visualize major cortical association fiber tracts like the uncinate fasciculus, inferior fronto-occipital fasciculus and inferior longitudinal fasciculus.