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Structural templates for imaging EEG cortical sources in infants

By Christian O'Reilly, Eric Larson, John E. Richards, Mayada Elsabbagh

Posted 22 Jun 2020
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/2020.06.20.162131

Electroencephalographic (EEG) source reconstruction is a powerful approach that helps to unmix scalp signals, mitigates volume conduction issues, and allows anatomical localization of brain activity. Algorithms used to estimate cortical sources require an anatomical model of the head and the brain, generally reconstructed using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). When such scans are unavailable, a population average can be used for adults, but no average surface template is available for cortical source imaging in infants. To address this issue, this paper introduces a new series of 12 anatomical models for subjects between zero and 24 months of age. These templates are built from MRI averages and volumetric boundary element method segmentation of head tissues available as part of the Neurodevelopmental MRI Database. Surfaces separating the pia mater, the gray matter, and the white matter were estimated using the Infant FreeSurfer pipeline. The surface of the skin as well as the outer and inner skull surfaces were extracted using a cube marching algorithm followed by Laplacian smoothing and mesh decimation. We post-processed these meshes to correct topological errors and ensure watertight meshes. The use of these templates for source reconstruction is demonstrated and validated using 100 high-density EEG recordings in 7-month-old infants. Hopefully, these templates will support future studies based on EEG source reconstruction and functional connectivity in healthy infants as well as in clinical pediatric populations. Particularly, they should make EEG-based neuroimaging more feasible in longitudinal neurodevelopmental studies where it may not be possible to scan infants at multiple time points. ### Competing Interest Statement The authors have declared no competing interest.

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