One of the primary benefits of large, open research projects such as the Human Connectome Project is the potential ability to speed the translation of scientific research to clinical practice. This year’s workshop on “Mapping Functional Networks for Brain Surgery” in Milan, Italy (September 6 – 9) sponsored by the International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine (ISMRM) focuses on a key clinical benefit of building a comprehensive functional map of the human brain.
From the program overview:
Surgery near or within so-called eloquent brain structures remains a challenge, particularly because of the risk of inducing a permanent neurological deficit. Presurgical and intraoperative mapping of functional networks located near or within the lesion is required in order to maximize the boundary of lesion resection and to minimize postoperative morbidity….
The goal of this workshop is to bring together in a single forum neuroscientists, MR physicists, cognitive neurologists, neuropsychologists, neuroöncologists, neuroradiologists and neurosurgeons and to provide a broader view, as well as a detailed information about the current issues involving the functional mapping methods used in surgery of eloquent areas.
David Van Essen and Kamil Ugurbil, primary investigators of the WU-Minn Human Connectome Project, will be delivering keynote talks during this conference. Dr. Ugurbil’s talk, “Exploring Columnar Organization with fMRI at Ultrahigh Field,” will be delivered on Day Two. Dr. Van Essen’s talk, “The Human Connectome Project,” will be delivered on Day Three. (The full program is here.)