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Tobias Granberg and Maria Kristoffersen´s research group

Imaging of Neurodegenerative and Neuroinflammatory disorders

Neurological disorders often cause changes in the brain and spinal cord that can be visualized and quantified using different imaging modalities. Our translational research group focuses on developing and applying new neuroimaging techniques clinically to benefit the diagnosis and follow-up of neurodegenerative and neuroinflammatory disorders. Our main research areas include dementia disorders, movement disorders, multiple sclerosis (MS) and rare neurological diseases.

The research team consists of a wide range of radiological and psychological expertise in close collaboration with neurologists, physicists and engineers at Karolinska as well as internationally. We create, validate and perform visual radiological ratings for morphometric analysis, complemented by volumetric segmentations. We work mainly with FreeSurfer, FSL, SPM and SyMRI but also create in-house analytic tools. A majority of our research projects is based on MRI (structural, functional, diffusion and synthetic) but we also work with CT and nuclear medicine modalities.

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Cortical MS pathology visualized with MRI: Neurite density (upper left), Free diffusion (upper right), Microstructure (bottom left), unit-less color sale 0-0.6. Myelin-sensitive MRI (bottom right), normalized unit-less color sale 0-1.55.

Research Projects

  • Karolinska Imaging Dementia Study (KIDS): A large retrospective cohort study evaluating imaging biomarkers in patients with cognitive impairment.
  • Karolinska Imaging in Movement Disorders Study (KIMOVE): A combined retro- and prospective longitudinal cohort study of Parkinson’s disease and atypical Parkinsonism with both conventional and advanced MRI techniques.
  • Stockholm prospective assessment of MS (STOPMS): A large prospective study of new-onset MS-patients started in 2001 using volumetric MRI to study the value of imaging biomarkers in MS.
  • Synthetic MRI: Validation studies and practical neuroapplications of SyMRI including myelin quantification using REMyDI (Rapid Estimation of Myelin for Diagnostic Imaging).
  • Other projects include the study of: Gadolinium retention in brain structures, Radiolologically Isolated Syndrome (RIS), spinal atrophy, Quantitative Susceptibility Mapping (QSM).

Selected Publications

In vivo characterization of cortical and white matter neuroaxonal pathology in early multiple sclerosis.
Granberg T, Fan Q, Treaba CA, Ouellette R, Herranz E, Mangeat G, et al
Brain 2017 Nov;140(11):2912-2926

Topography and Determinants of Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)-Visible Perivascular Spaces in a Large Memory Clinic Cohort.
Shams S, Martola J, Charidimou A, Larvie M, Granberg T, Shams M, et al
J Am Heart Assoc 2017 Sep;6(9):

Quantitative susceptibility mapping differentiates between parkinsonian disorders.
Sjöström H, Granberg T, Westman E, Svenningsson P
Parkinsonism Relat. Disord. 2017 Nov;44():51-57

Retention of Gadolinium-Based Contrast Agents in Multiple Sclerosis: Retrospective Analysis of an 18-Year Longitudinal Study.
Forslin Y, Shams S, Hashim F, Aspelin P, Bergendal G, Martola J, et al
AJNR Am J Neuroradiol 2017 Jul;38(7):1311-1316

Cerebral microbleeds topography and cerebrospinal fluid biomarkers in cognitive impairment.
Shams S, Granberg T, Martola J, Charidimou A, Li X, Shams M, et al
J. Cereb. Blood Flow Metab. 2017 Mar;37(3):1006-1013

Cortical superficial siderosis: Prevalence and biomarker profile in a memory clinic population.
Shams S, Martola J, Charidimou A, Cavallin L, Granberg T, Shams M, et al
Neurology 2016 Sep;87(11):1110-7

Clinical Feasibility of Synthetic MRI in Multiple Sclerosis: A Diagnostic and Volumetric Validation Study.
Granberg T, Uppman M, Hashim F, Cananau C, Nordin LE, Shams S, et al
AJNR Am J Neuroradiol 2016 Jun;37(6):1023-9

Incidence of Radiologically Isolated Syndrome: A Population-Based Study.
Forslin Y, Granberg T, Jumah AA, Shams S, Aspelin P, Kristoffersen-Wiberg M, et al
AJNR Am J Neuroradiol 2016 Jun;37(6):1017-22

Apolipoprotein E and Sex Bias in Cerebrovascular Aging of Men and Mice.
Finch CE, Shams S
Trends Neurosci. 2016 09;39(9):625-637

SWI or T2*: which MRI sequence to use in the detection of cerebral microbleeds? The Karolinska Imaging Dementia Study.
Shams S, Martola J, Cavallin L, Granberg T, Shams M, Aspelin P, et al
AJNR Am J Neuroradiol 2015 Jun;36(6):1089-95


Group members


Åsa BergendalAnknuten

Lena BrongeAnknuten

Carmen CananauForskarstuderande

Lena CavallinAnknuten

Tobias GranbergForskargruppsledare

Farouk HashimAnknuten

Maria Kristoffersen WibergAnknuten, Forskargruppsledare

Anna LaveskogForskarstuderande

Morgan LundgrenAnknuten

Juha MartolaAnknuten

Russell OuelletteDoktorand, Forskarstuderande

Michael PlatténForskarstuderande

Mana ShamsAnknuten

Sara ShamsAnknuten

Claes ÖhbergAnknuten