Harmonization of multi-site DTI and NODDI data using the combined association test
Yuya Saito1, Koji Kamagata1, Norihide Maikusa2, Christina Andica1, Wataru Uchida1, Hayato Nozaki1,3, Mana Owaki1,3, Akifumi Hagiwara1, Shohei Fujita1,4, Toshiaki Akashi1, Akihiko Wada1, Shinsuke Koike2, Masaaki Hori5, and Shigeki Aoki1
1Department of Radiology, Graduate School of Medicine, Juntendo University, Tokyo, Japan, 2Center for Evolutionary Cognitive Sciences, Graduate School of Art and Sciences, The University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan, 3Department of Radiological Sciences, Graduate School of Human Health Sciences, Tokyo Metropolitan University, Tokyo, Japan, 4Department of Radiology, University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan, 5Department of Radiology, Toho University Omori Medical Center, Tokyo, Japan
When analyzing multi-site diffusion MRI (dMRI) data, metrics should be harmonized to remove the site effect. In this study, we applied the combined association test (ComBat), which uses regression of covariates with an empirical Bayes framework, for diffusion metrics based on diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) and neurite orientation dispersion and density imaging (NODDI). The results showed that ComBat can harmonize site-related effects in DTI and NODDI metrics based on multi-site dMRI while preserving subject biological information, such as sex differences and correlation with age. Thus, ComBat could be applied in large multi-site studies to identify subtle white matter changes.
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