Seminar – Benjamin de Leener


Speaker: Benjamin De Leener, Ph.D.
Title: The MRI anatomy of the spinal cord, Part I 
Where: CRIUGM Room E1910 (
When: Thursday June 7th,  13h-14h

*The seminar will be presented in English

Benjamin De Leener (PhD) is a HBHL Postdoctoral Fellow at Doyon Lab). He has a strong passion for medical imaging technologies and computer vision in general. Being able to understand and utilize the content of an image has the potential to revolutionize the way we interact with the world. His main contribution is the development of the Spinal Cord Toolbox (SCT), a comprehensive and open-source software for analyzing MRI images of the spinal cord. SCT includes tools for automatically detecting and segmenting spinal cord structures and extracting multi-parametric MRI data from white matter pathways and gray matter sub regions. His research interests are the development of new analysis and processing methods for medical data, with a particular interest in MRI and neurosciences.


Over the last decade, the neuroimaging community has developed various tools for processing and analyzing MRI data of the spinal cord. Particularly, recent advances in MRI templates of the spinal cord allows unbiased multicentric studies of large groups of patients, by providing a common referential space. However, the coordinate systems used to build these templates and atlases are based on anatomical structure (a.k.a. the vertebral bodies) and do not appropriately represent the functions of the spinal cord, therefore leading to potential errors when analyzing functional MRI data or the spinal cord internal structure (gray/white matter). This study presents a novel approach for approximating the position of the spinal roots along the spinal cord, and introduces the premise of a new coordinate system for template-based analysis, based on the functional structure of the spinal cord.