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Abstract #2686

Smoothing-matched k-space coverage for enhanced BOLD fMRI

Didi Chi1,2, Rebecca Glarin2, Yasmin Blunck1,2, Catherine E. Davey1,2, and Leigh A. Johnston1,2
1Department of Biomedical Engineering, The University of Melbourne, Parkville, Australia, 2Melbourne Brain Centre Imaging Unit, The University of Melbourne, Parkville, Australia

Spatial smoothing is commonly applied as a pre-processing step in fMRI activation analysis pipelines. We investigate smoothing-matched k-space coverage for multiband EPI, with a particular focus on how varying the sampling speed in a reduced k-space will affect image SNR and resultant activation maps. A block task finger-tapping experiment demonstrates improved SNR from smoothing-matched k-space coverage, and improvements in activation level and specificity in the activation map. Our results demonstrate that dense sampling around the central echo time in multiband EPI produces superior results.

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