3T In Vivo High-Resolution Atlas of the Hippocampus and Subfields

The hippocampus is a neuroanatomical structure that has been widely studied in the context of learning, memory, stress, and neurodegeneration. Neuroanatomically, the hippocampus is subdivided into several subfields with intricate morphologies and complex three-dimensional relationships.

To overcome the limited availability of post-mortem specimens and expertise in state-of-the-art high-field imaging, we conducted a coupling of MR acquisition and detailed segmentation techniques that allow for the reliable identification of hippocampal anatomy (including subfields). High-resolution and -contrast T1- and T2-weighted image volumes were acquired from 5 volunteers (2 male; 3 female; age range: 29–57, avg. 37) using a clinical research-grade 3T scanner and have final super-sampled isotropic voxel dimensions of 0.3 mm.

We demonstrate that by using these acquisition techniques, our data results in contrast-to-noise ratios that compare well with high-resolution images acquired with long scan times using post-mortem data at higher field strengths. For the subfields, the cornus ammonis (CA) 1, CA2/CA3, CA4/dentate gyrus, stratum radiatum/stratum lacunosum/stratum moleculare, and subiculum were all labeled as separate structures.


Winterburn, J. L., Pruessner, J. C., Chavez, S., Schira, M., Lobaugh, N. J., Voineskos, A. N., & Chakravarty, M. A novel in vivo atlas of human hippocampal subfields using high-resolution 3T magnetic resonance imaging. NeuroImage (2013). 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2013.02.003

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