Morphological changes of the dorsal contour of the corpus callosum during the first two years of life

Lauren N. Simpson, Erika J. Schneble, Elena D. Griffin, James T. Obayashi, Phillip A. Setran, Donald A. Ross, David R. Pettersson, Jeffrey M. Pollock

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Background: In the medicolegal literature, focal concavities or notching of the corpus callosum has been thought to be associated with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders. Recent work suggests corpus callosum notching is a dynamic and normal anatomical feature, although it has not yet been defined in early life or infancy. Objective: Our purpose was to characterize the dorsal contour of the corpus callosum during the first 2 years of life by defining the prevalence, onset and trajectory of notching on midsagittal T1-weighted images. Materials and methods: We reviewed retrospectively 1,157 consecutive patients between birth and 2 years of age. Corpus callosum morphology was evaluated and described. A notch was defined as a dorsal concavity of at least 1 mm in depth along the dorsal surface of the corpus callosum. Patient age as well as notch depth, location, number and presence of the pericallosal artery in the notch were noted. Results: Two hundred thirty-three notches were identified in 549 patients: 36 anterior, 194 posterior and 3 patients with undulations. A statistically significant (R2=0.53, Beta=0.021, P=0.002) positive correlation between posterior notch prevalence and age in months was noted. A positive correlation between age and depth of the posterior notch was also statistically significant (r=0.32, n=179, P≤0.001). A trend for increased anterior notch prevalence with age was identified with significant correlation between visualized pericallosal artery indentation and anterior notching (r=0.20, n=138, P=0.016). Sub-analysis of the first month of life showed corpus callosum notching was not present. Conclusion: The presence of posterior notching increased significantly with age and was more frequent than that of anterior notching. Corpus callosum notching was absent in the first week of life, building on prior studies suggesting corpus callosum notching is acquired. This study provides baseline data on normative corpus callosum notching trajectories by age group during early life, a helpful correlate when associating corpus callosum morphology with disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)543-549
Number of pages7
JournalPediatric Radiology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1 2020


  • Anomaly
  • Brain
  • Children
  • Corpus callosum
  • Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders
  • Magnetic resonance imaging
  • Notching

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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