Research Focus: Research in the Kroenke lab utilizes magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) techniques to characterize cellular-scale anatomy. Neurons of the early-developing cerebral cortex transform from simple, elongated structures to complex, interconnected and structurally interdigitated irregular structures. An MRI technique termed diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) is sensitive to this anatomical transition. Specifically, anisotropy in water diffusion within the cerebral cortex decreases with maturation. Members of the Kroenke lab are also utilizing the non-invasive nature of MRI research to investigate neuroanatomical changes associated with aging, and neuroadaptive changes in adult brain following chronic exposure to alcohol. The long-term goals of these studies are to relate changes in the structure and composition of neuronal and oligodendroglial membranes to characteristics of MRI and magnetic resonance spectroscopy measurements.
Biography: Christopher Kroenke received his PhD in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics at Columbia University in 2000. He pursued his postdoctoral fellowship in the Washington University Department of Radiology. He was an Assistant Professor of Radiology at Washington University when he was appointed to the Center in 2006. Dr. Kroenke is an Associate Scientist in the Division of Neuroscience, and an Associate Professor in the OHSU Department of Behavioral Neuroscience.
Kroenke, C.D., D.C. Van Essen, T.E. Inder, S. Rees, G.L. Bretthorst, and J.J. Neil. 2007. Microstructural changes of the baboon cerebral cortex during gestational development reflected in magnetic resonance imaging diffusion anisotropy. J. Neurosci.27:12506-12515.
Kroenke, C.D., G.L. Bretthorst, T.E. Inder, and J.J. Neil. 2005. Diffusion MR imaging characteristics of the developing primate brain. NeuroImage25:1205-1213.