IBS Institute for Basic Science


Functional Brain Mapping Lab



Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a very powerful non-invasive tool to visualize brain morphology, physiology, function and connectivity. However, MRI originates from water protons, thus its biological source is not straightforward. Especially, widely-used blood oxygenation-level dependent (BOLD) fMRI relies on the presumably close relationship between neural activity and hemodynamic responses. Therefore, it is crucial to understand underlying basis of fMRI for proper quantification and determining ultimate limits. Also MRI can image entire brain repeatedly from anesthetized to awake animals, and its readout can be combined with diverse manipulations such as sensory, electrical, chemical and optogenetic stimulation, and pharmacological interventions for answering system-level neural circuits. To obtain multimodal functional neuroimaging data, animal MRI facility (9.4 T and 15.2 T Bruker) is accompanied with a neurophysiology laboratory with electrophysiology, intrinsic optical imager, laser Doppler flowmeter, etc. Our research lab consisting of MR scientists and system neuroscientists focuses on three inter-related research themes; a) the development of physiological and functional MRI techniques, b) the investigation of biophysical and physiological sources of MRI signals (functional MRI, perfusion, diffusion, chemical exchange MRI), and c) the application of neuroimaging techniques to systems neuroscience research. 


Selected Recent Publications

1. Jin T, Wang P, Zong XP & Kim SG, “MR imaging of the Amide-Proton Transfer effect and the pH-insensitive Nuclear Overhauser Effect at 9.4 T”, Magnetic Resonance in Medicine 69: 760-770, 2013.

2. Vazquez AV, Fukuda M, Crowley JC & Kim SG, “Neural and hemodynamic responses elicited by forelimb and photo-stimulation in  Channelrhodopsin-2 mice: Insights into the hemodynamic point-spread function”, Cerebral Cortex 24(11): 2908-2919, 2014.

3. Jin T, Mehrens H, Hendrich KS & Kim SG, “Mapping brain glucose uptake with chemical exchange-sensitive spin-lock magnetic resonance imaging”, Journal of Cerebral Blood and Metabolism 34(8): 1402-1410, 2014.

4. Iordanova B, Vazquez AL, Poplawsky AJ, Fukuda M, and Kim SG, “Neural and hemodynamic responses to optogenetic and sensory stimulation in the rat somatosensory cortex”,  Journal of Cerebral Blood and Metabolism 35(6): 922-932, 2015.

5. Poplawsky AJ, Fukuda M, Murphy M & Kim SG, “Layer-specific fMRI responses to excitatory and inhibitory neuronal activities in the olfactory bulb”, J of Neurosci 35(46): 15263-15275, 2015.