Parameter estimation in the magnitude-only and complex-valued fMRI data models

Daniel B Rowe


In functional magnetic resonance imaging, voxel time courses are complex-valued data but are traditionally converted to real magnitude-only data ones. At a large signal-to-noise ratio (SNR), the magnitude-only data Ricean distribution is approximated by a normal distribution that has been suggested as reasonable in magnitude-only data magnetic resonance images for an SNR of 5 and potentially as low as 3. A complex activation model has been recently introduced by Rowe and Logan [Rowe, D.B., and Logan, B.R. (2004). A complex way to compute fMRI activation. NeuroImage, 23 (3):1078-1092] that is valid for all SNRs. The properties of the parameter estimators and activation statistic for these two models and a more accurate Ricean approximation based on a Taylor series expansion are characterized in terms of bias, variance, and Cramer-Rao lower bound. It was found that the unbiased estimators in the complex model continued to be unbiased for lower SNRs while those of the normal magnitude-only data model became biased as the SNR decreased and at differing levels for the regression coefficients. The unbiased parameter estimators from the approximate magnitude-only Ricean Taylor model were unbiased to lower SNRs than the magnitude-only ...Continue Reading


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