The pioneering work of the Martinos Center spurred an explosion of research in functional brain imaging. While we have known for almost 100 years that neural activity causes localized changes in blood flow, and researchers have more recently demonstrated that neural activity causes localized changes in blood oxygenation, the tools for measuring these signals have historically been highly invasive in animals and moderately invasive in humans. The seminal work of an extraordinary team of physicists, radiologists, and neuroscientists at the Martinos Center, demonstrating that these changes and blood flow and blood oxygenation can be detected by the noninvasive technology of MRI, has led to a dramatic increase in functional brain imaging work with humans. Because this noninvasive technique permits many repetitions of experimental procedures on a single subject, it is rapidly becoming the method of choice for neuroscience research in functional brain mapping. The purpose of the present course is to provide an in-depth introduction to this field. It is primarily intended for people new to functional MRI, though some experienced scientists have found the program useful.
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