Prospective active marker motion correction improves statistical power in BOLD fMRI

Jordan Muraskin, M.B. Ooi, Robin Goldman, S. Krueger, W.J. Thomas, Paul Sajda, Truman R. Brown

Group level statistical maps of blood oxygenation level dependent (BOLD) signals acquired using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) have become a basic measurement for much of systems, cognitive and social neuroscience. A challenge in making inferences from these statistical maps is the noise and potential confounds that arise from the head motion that occurs within and between acquisition volumes. This motion results in the scan plane being misaligned during acquisition, ultimately leading to reduced statistical power when maps are constructed at the group level. In most cases, an attempt is made to correct for this motion through the use of retrospective analysis methods. In this paper, we use a prospective active marker motion correction (PRAMMO) system that uses radio frequency markers for real-time tracking of motion, enabling on-line slice plane correction. We show that the statistical power of the activation maps is substantially increased using PRAMMO compared to conventional retrospective correction. Analysis of our results indicates that the PRAMMO acquisition reduces the variance without decreasing the signal component of the BOLD (beta). Using PRAMMO could thus improve the overall statistical power of fMRI based BOLD measurements, leading to stronger inferences of the nature of processing in the human brain.

Available Online doi: 10.1016/j.neuroimage/2012.11
Accepted 1 March 2013
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