World-first MRI study shows how human brain grows and shrinks over time

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MRI scan and diagnostics. Health care vector concept stock illustration
MRI scan and diagnostics. Health care vector concept stock illustration

Scientists have been studying the human brain for hundreds of years. Now, results from the world’s largest study involving magnetic resonance imaging (MRIs) scans give us an interesting and detailed insight into how our brain develops during the course of our lives.

The team behind this fascinating study uncovered critical information after combining nearly 125 000 MRI scans, spanning six continents. It was taken from just over 101 000 individuals ranging from a 15-week old foetus to a 100-year adult. The team obtained this information from more than 100 studies. 

The authors made this interactive open resource, named Brain Charts, publically accessible. The brain charts show all the brain images in a standard way, making it easier for researchers to compare brain development over time, including comparing the volume of specific brain regions as humans age. 

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