Allen Song

Overview:

The research in our lab is concerned with advancing structural and functional MRI methodologies (e.g. fast and high-resolution imaging techniques) for human brain imaging. We also aim to improve our understanding of functional brain signals, including spatiotemporal characterizations of the blood oxygenation level dependent contrast and alternative contrast mechanisms that are more directly linked to the neuronal activities. Additional effort is invested in applying and validating the developed methods to study human functional neuroanatomy.

Positions:

Professor in Radiology

Radiology
School of Medicine

Director of the Center for Brain Imaging and Analysis

Duke-UNC Center for Brain Imaging and Analysis
School of Medicine

Professor in Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences

Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences
School of Medicine

Professor in Neurobiology

Neurobiology
School of Medicine

Faculty Network Member of the Duke Institute for Brain Sciences

Duke Institute for Brain Sciences
Institutes and Provost's Academic Units

Member of the Duke Cancer Institute

Duke Cancer Institute
School of Medicine

Education:

Ph.D. 1995

Medical College of Wisconsin

Visiting Fellow, Laboratory Of Brain And Cognition

National Institutes of Health

Assistant Professor of Radiology, Tenure Track, Radiology

Emory University

Grants:

High Fidelity Diffusion MRI for Children with Cerebral Palsy in Stem Cell Therapy

Administered By
Duke-UNC Center for Brain Imaging and Analysis
Awarded By
National Institutes of Health
Role
Principal Investigator
Start Date
End Date

Role of cannabis on HIV-related cognitive impairment: a brain connectomics study

Administered By
Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences, Addiction
Awarded By
National Institutes of Health
Role
Co Investigator
Start Date
End Date

Neuroimaging of Visual Attention in Aging

Administered By
Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences, Geriatric Behavioral Health
Awarded By
National Institutes of Health
Role
Co Investigator
Start Date
End Date

MRI data fusion to investigate effects of drug abuse on HIV neurological complications

Administered By
Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences, Addiction
Awarded By
National Institutes of Health
Role
Co Investigator
Start Date
End Date

NCANDA Research Project Site: Duke

Administered By
Psychiatry, Child & Family Mental Health & Developmental Neuroscience
Awarded By
National Institutes of Health
Role
Collaborator
Start Date
End Date

Publications:

Effect of Autologous Cord Blood Infusion on Motor Function and Brain Connectivity in Young Children with Cerebral Palsy: A Randomized, Placebo-Controlled Trial.

Cerebral palsy (CP) is a condition affecting young children that causes lifelong disabilities. Umbilical cord blood cells improve motor function in experimental systems via paracrine signaling. After demonstrating safety, we conducted a phase II trial of autologous cord blood (ACB) infusion in children with CP to test whether ACB could improve function (ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT01147653; IND 14360). In this double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover study of a single intravenous infusion of 1-5 × 107 total nucleated cells per kilogram of ACB, children ages 1 to 6 years with CP were randomly assigned to receive ACB or placebo at baseline, followed by the alternate infusion 1 year later. Motor function and magnetic resonance imaging brain connectivity studies were performed at baseline, 1, and 2 years post-treatment. The primary endpoint was change in motor function 1 year after baseline infusion. Additional analyses were performed at 2 years. Sixty-three children (median age 2.1 years) were randomized to treatment (n = 32) or placebo (n = 31) at baseline. Although there was no difference in mean change in Gross Motor Function Measure-66 (GMFM-66) scores at 1 year between placebo and treated groups, a dosing effect was identified. In an analysis 1 year post-ACB treatment, those who received doses ≥2 × 107 /kg demonstrated significantly greater increases in GMFM-66 scores above those predicted by age and severity, as well as in Peabody Developmental Motor Scales-2 Gross Motor Quotient scores and normalized brain connectivity. Results of this study suggest that appropriately dosed ACB infusion improves brain connectivity and gross motor function in young children with CP. Stem Cells Translational Medicine 2017;6:2071-2078.
Authors
Sun, JM; Song, AW; Case, LE; Mikati, MA; Gustafson, KE; Simmons, R; Goldstein, R; Petry, J; McLaughlin, C; Waters-Pick, B; Chen, LW; Wease, S; Blackwell, B; Worley, G; Troy, J; Kurtzberg, J
MLA Citation
Sun, Jessica M., et al. “Effect of Autologous Cord Blood Infusion on Motor Function and Brain Connectivity in Young Children with Cerebral Palsy: A Randomized, Placebo-Controlled Trial.Stem Cells Transl Med, vol. 6, no. 12, Dec. 2017, pp. 2071–78. Pubmed, doi:10.1002/sctm.17-0102.
URI
https://scholars.duke.edu/individual/pub1282262
PMID
29080265
Source
pubmed
Published In
Stem Cells Translational Medicine
Volume
6
Published Date
Start Page
2071
End Page
2078
DOI
10.1002/sctm.17-0102

Preschool anxiety disorders predict different patterns of amygdala-prefrontal connectivity at school-age.

OBJECTIVE: In this prospective, longitudinal study of young children, we examined whether a history of preschool generalized anxiety, separation anxiety, and/or social phobia is associated with amygdala-prefrontal dysregulation at school-age. As an exploratory analysis, we investigated whether distinct anxiety disorders differ in the patterns of this amygdala-prefrontal dysregulation. METHODS: Participants were children taking part in a 5-year study of early childhood brain development and anxiety disorders. Preschool symptoms of generalized anxiety, separation anxiety, and social phobia were assessed with the Preschool Age Psychiatric Assessment (PAPA) in the first wave of the study when the children were between 2 and 5 years old. The PAPA was repeated at age 6. We conducted functional MRIs when the children were 5.5 to 9.5 year old to assess neural responses to viewing of angry and fearful faces. RESULTS: A history of preschool social phobia predicted less school-age functional connectivity between the amygdala and the ventral prefrontal cortices to angry faces. Preschool generalized anxiety predicted less functional connectivity between the amygdala and dorsal prefrontal cortices in response to fearful faces. Finally, a history of preschool separation anxiety predicted less school-age functional connectivity between the amygdala and the ventral prefrontal cortices to angry faces and greater school-age functional connectivity between the amygdala and dorsal prefrontal cortices to angry faces. CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that there are enduring neurobiological effects associated with a history of preschool anxiety, which occur over-and-above the effect of subsequent emotional symptoms. Our results also provide preliminary evidence for the neurobiological differentiation of specific preschool anxiety disorders.
Authors
Carpenter, KLH; Angold, A; Chen, N-K; Copeland, WE; Gaur, P; Pelphrey, K; Song, AW; Egger, HL
MLA Citation
Carpenter, Kimberly L. H., et al. “Preschool anxiety disorders predict different patterns of amygdala-prefrontal connectivity at school-age..” Plos One, vol. 10, no. 1, 2015. Pubmed, doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0116854.
URI
https://scholars.duke.edu/individual/pub1057389
PMID
25625285
Source
pubmed
Published In
Plos One
Volume
10
Published Date
Start Page
e0116854
DOI
10.1371/journal.pone.0116854

Diffusion tensor imaging of cerebral white matter integrity in cognitive aging.

In this article we review recent research on diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) of white matter (WM) integrity and the implications for age-related differences in cognition. Neurobiological mechanisms defined from DTI analyses suggest that a primary dimension of age-related decline in WM is a decline in the structural integrity of myelin, particularly in brain regions that myelinate later developmentally. Research integrating behavioral measures with DTI indicates that WM integrity supports the communication among cortical networks, particularly those involving executive function, perceptual speed, and memory (i.e., fluid cognition). In the absence of significant disease, age shares a substantial portion of the variance associated with the relation between WM integrity and fluid cognition. Current data are consistent with one model in which age-related decline in WM integrity contributes to a decreased efficiency of communication among networks for fluid cognitive abilities. Neurocognitive disorders for which older adults are at risk, such as depression, further modulate the relation between WM and cognition, in ways that are not as yet entirely clear. Developments in DTI technology are providing a new insight into both the neurobiological mechanisms of aging WM and the potential contribution of DTI to understanding functional measures of brain activity. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Imaging Brain Aging and Neurodegenerative disease.
Authors
Madden, DJ; Bennett, IJ; Burzynska, A; Potter, GG; Chen, N-K; Song, AW
MLA Citation
Madden, David J., et al. “Diffusion tensor imaging of cerebral white matter integrity in cognitive aging..” Biochim Biophys Acta, vol. 1822, no. 3, Mar. 2012, pp. 386–400. Pubmed, doi:10.1016/j.bbadis.2011.08.003.
URI
https://scholars.duke.edu/individual/pub740011
PMID
21871957
Source
pubmed
Published In
Biochimica Et Biophysica Acta
Volume
1822
Published Date
Start Page
386
End Page
400
DOI
10.1016/j.bbadis.2011.08.003

Measurement of spontaneous signal fluctuations in fMRI: adult age differences in intrinsic functional connectivity

Authors
Chen, N-K; Chou, Y-H; Song, AW; Madden, DJ
MLA Citation
Chen, N. .. K., et al. “Measurement of spontaneous signal fluctuations in fMRI: adult age differences in intrinsic functional connectivity.” Brain Structure and Function, 2009, pp. 1–15.
URI
https://scholars.duke.edu/individual/pub764941
Source
scopus
Published In
Brain Structure & Function
Published Date
Start Page
1
End Page
15

Amygdala activation to sad pictures during high-field (4 tesla) functional magnetic resonance imaging.

Fear-related processing in the amygdala has been well documented, but its role in signaling other emotions remains controversial. The authors recovered signal loss in the amygdala at high-field strength using an inward spiral pulse sequence and probed its response to pictures varying in their degree of portrayed sadness. These pictures were presented as intermittent task-irrelevant distractors during a concurrent visual oddball task. Relative to neutral distractors, sad distractors elicited greater activation along ventral brain regions, including the amygdala, fusiform gyrus, and inferior frontal gyrus. In contrast, oddball targets engaged dorsal sectors of frontal, parietal, and cingulate cortices. The amygdala's role in emotional evaluation thus extends to images of grief and despair as well as to those depicting violence and threat.
Authors
Wang, L; McCarthy, G; Song, AW; Labar, KS
MLA Citation
Wang, Lihong, et al. “Amygdala activation to sad pictures during high-field (4 tesla) functional magnetic resonance imaging..” Emotion, vol. 5, no. 1, Mar. 2005, pp. 12–22. Pubmed, doi:10.1037/1528-3542.5.1.12.
URI
https://scholars.duke.edu/individual/pub782460
PMID
15755216
Source
pubmed
Published In
Emotion
Volume
5
Published Date
Start Page
12
End Page
22
DOI
10.1037/1528-3542.5.1.12