White matter microstructure changes in a Bcan knockout mouse model
Cristiana Tisca1, Mohamed Tachrount1, Frederik J Lange1, Amy FD Howard1, Chaoyue Wang1, Lily R Qiu1, Benjamin C Tendler1, Jason P Lerch1,2,3, Aurea B Martins-Bach1, and Karla L Miller1
1Wellcome Centre for Integrative Neuroimaging, FMRIB, Nuffield Department of Clinical Neurosciences, University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom, 2Mouse Imaging Centre, Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, ON, Canada, 3Department of Medical Biophysics, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada
Recent genome-wide association studies using UK Biobank brain imaging datasets showed associations between microstructural MRI measures in white matter and genetic loci of BCAN, a gene encoding a protein implicated in neurodegeneration and synaptic transmission. To investigate these associations, we acquired ex vivo MRI data in a Bcan knockout mouse model. Our results show significant differences in FA and T2* for some tracts in wild-type males compared to homozygous males, with consistent trends of higher FA and MD across WM tracts. Future histology work in the same brains will reveal the biological changes underpinning these differences.
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