Clinical Neuroscience Research Unit
Current fMRI Studies
Functional Brain Imaging Research Program
Functional MRI or functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) is a type of specialized MRI scan and one of the most recently developed forms of brain imaging. It is based on the same technology as the MRI -- a noninvasive test that uses a strong magnetic field and radio waves to create detailed images of the body. Instead of creating images of organs and tissues like MRI, an fMRI looks at blood flow in the brain to detect areas of activity. These changes in blood flow, which are captured on a computer and shown on the screen, help doctors and researchers understand more about how the brain works.
This neuroimaging technique allows us to detect the specific areas of the brain which are involved in a task, a process, or an emotion. Color changes on the fMRI scans show researchers what specific parts of the brain are being activated while the person in the scanner responds to images, sounds, or performs various tasks. This ability to see not only the structure of the brain, but the function of the brain is a major scientific advancement in medicine.