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Abstract #1652

Optimal resolution for searchlight classification of BOLD fMRI data.

Hendrik Mandelkow1, Jacco A de Zwart1, Catie Chang1, and Jeff H Duyn1

1Advanced MRI section, LFMI, NINDS, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD, United States

Information-theoretic approaches to BOLD fMRI analysis, like the Searchlight method for multivariate pattern analysis (MVPA), suggest that distinctive local patterns of BOLD signal on a spatial scale of millimeters carry information that allows the classification or decoding of perceptual stimuli. In this study high-resolution (1.2mm) BOLD fMRI experiments at 7T combined with naturalistic movie stimuli reveal that Searchlight decoding primarily relies on a neurogenic BOLD signal that is spatially smooth, unlike the accompanying physiological artifacts. As a result the optimal fMRI resolution peaks between 2 and 4mm, a voxel size well above the technical limits of fMRI.

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