Neuroimage. 2010 Jun;51(2):694-703 doi: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2010.02.008. 2010 Feb 10.

Near-isometric flattening of brain surfaces

Balasubramanian M, Polimeni JR, Schwartz EL.


Flattened representations of brain surfaces are often used to visualize and analyze spatial patterns of structural organization and functional activity. Here, we present a set of rigorous criteria and accompanying test cases with which to evaluate flattening algorithms that attempt to preserve shortest-path distances on the original surface. We also introduce a novel flattening algorithm that is the first to satisfy all of these criteria and demonstrate its ability to produce accurate flat maps of human and macaque visual cortex. Using this algorithm, we have recently obtained results showing a remarkable, unexpected degree of consistency in the shape and topographic structure of visual cortical areas within humans and macaques, as well as between these two species.

PMID: 20149886