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Abstract #0410

Characterization of Artifactual Correlation in Highly-Accelerated Simultaneous Multi-Slice (SMS) fMRI Acquisitions

Kawin Setsompop1, 2, Jonathan R. Polimeni1, 2, Himanshu Bhat3, Lawrence L. Wald1, 2

1A.A. Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging, MGH, Charlestown, MA, United States; 2Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, United States; 3Siemens Medical Solutions, Charlestown, MA, United States

Simultaneous Multi-Slice (SMS) acquisition with blipped-CAIPI scheme has enabled dramatic reduction in imaging time for fMRI acquisitions, enabling high-resolution whole-brain acquisitions with short repetition times. The characterization of SMS acquisition performance is crucial to wide adoption of the technique. In this work, we examine an important source of artifact: spurious thermal noise correlation between aliased imaging voxels. This artifactual correlation can create undesirable bias in fMRI resting-state functional connectivity analysis. Here we provide a simple method for characterizing this artifactual correlation, which should aid in guiding the selection of appropriate slice- and inplane-acceleration factors for SMS acquisitions during protocol design.