Performing functional neurosurgery without the possibility of direct neural stimulation requires the precise determination of the target position solely based on pre-operative MR data. This will be achieved by navigating the pilot MR images using the Morel histological atlas of the basal ganglia.
Currently only fixed geometrical relations between specific anatomical landmarks in appropriately selected datasets are used for the prediction of the stereotactical locations during interventional planning. The Morel atlas, however, implicitly contains much more information about the anatomical relations between the relevant structures of the basal ganglia.
In order to improve the precision of the interventional planning we will convert the currently existing atlas in a digital representation and develop statistical shape models to fully exploit its inherent potential.
We will then develop software tools to be integrated into the overall TcMRgFUS system for high precision interventional planning based on structural data gained from MR acquisitions. These tools will enable atlas-based target volume planning allowing to overlay the full set of stereotactic targets onto the MR image used for the planning process.