Effects of chronic and acute stimulants on brain functional connectivity hubs.
Brain Res. 2015 Feb 23;
Authors: Konova AB, Moeller SJ, Tomasi D, Goldstein RZ
The spatial distribution and strength of information processing 'hubs' are essential features of the brain's network topology, and may thus be particularly susceptible to neuropsychiatric disease. Despite growing evidence that drug addiction alters functioning and connectivity of discrete brain regions, little is known about whether chronic drug use is associated with abnormalities in this network-level organization, and if such abnormalities could be targeted for intervention. We used functional connectivity density (FCD) mapping to evaluate how chronic and acute stimulants affect brain hubs (i.e., regions with many short-range or long-range functional connections). Nineteen individuals with cocaine use disorders (CUD) and 15 healthy controls completed resting-state fMRI scans following a randomly assigned dose of methylphenidate (MPH; 20mg) or placebo. Short-range and long-range FCD maps were computed for each participant and medication condition. CUD participants had increased short-range and long-range FCD in the ventromedial prefrontal cortex, posterior cingulate/precuneus, and putamen/amygdala, which in areas of the default mode network correlated with years of use. Across participants, MPH decreased short-range FCD in the thalamus/putamen, and decreased long-range FCD in the supplementary motor area and postcentral gyrus. Increased density of short-range and long-range functional connections to default mode hubs in CUD suggests an overrepresentation of these resource-expensive hubs. While the effects of MPH on FCD were only partly overlapping with those of CUD, MPH-induced reduction in the density of short-range connections to the putamen/thalamus, a network of core relevance to habit formation and addiction, suggests that some FCD abnormalities could be targeted for treatment.
PMID: 25721787 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]
Pupil diameter covaries with BOLD activity in human locus coeruleus.
Hum Brain Mapp. 2014 Aug;35(8):4140-54
Authors: Murphy PR, O'Connell RG, O'Sullivan M, Robertson IH, Balsters JH
The locus coeruleus-noradrenergic (LC-NA) neuromodulatory system has been implicated in a broad array of cognitive processes, yet scope for investigating this system's function in humans is currently limited by an absence of reliable non-invasive measures of LC activity. Although pupil diameter has been employed as a proxy measure of LC activity in numerous studies, empirical evidence for a relationship between the two is lacking. In the present study, we sought to rigorously probe the relationship between pupil diameter and BOLD activity localized to the human LC. Simultaneous pupillometry and fMRI revealed a relationship between continuous pupil diameter and BOLD activity in a dorsal pontine cluster overlapping with the LC, as localized via neuromelanin-sensitive structural imaging and an LC atlas. This relationship was present both at rest and during performance of a two-stimulus oddball task, with and without spatial smoothing of the fMRI data, and survived retrospective image correction for physiological noise. Furthermore, the spatial extent of this pupil/LC relationship guided a volume-of-interest analysis in which we provide the first demonstration in humans of a fundamental characteristic of animal LC activity: phasic modulation by oddball stimulus relevance. Taken together, these findings highlight the potential for utilizing pupil diameter to achieve a more comprehensive understanding of the role of the LC-NA system in human cognition.
PMID: 24510607 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Impact of methodological variables on functional connectivity findings in autism spectrum disorders.
Hum Brain Mapp. 2014 Aug;35(8):4035-48
Authors: Nair A, Keown CL, Datko M, Shih P, Keehn B, Müller RA
Growing evidence suggests that Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) involves abnormalities of multiple functional networks. Neuroimaging studies of ASD have therefore increasingly focused on connectivity. Many functional connectivity (fcMRI) studies have reported network underconnectivity in children and adults with ASD. However, there are notable inconsistencies, with some studies reporting overconnectivity. A previous literature survey suggested that a few methodological factors play a crucial role in differential fcMRI outcomes. Using three ASD data sets (two task-related, one resting state) from 54 ASD and 51 typically developing (TD) participants (ages 9-18 years), we examined the impact of four methodological factors: type of pipeline (co-activation vs. intrinsic analysis, related to temporal filtering and removal of task-related effects), seed selection, field of view (whole brain vs. limited ROIs), and dataset. Significant effects were found for type of pipeline, field of view, and dataset. Notably, for each dataset results ranging from robust underconnectivity to robust overconnectivity were detected, depending on the type of pipeline, with intrinsic fcMRI analyses (low bandpass filter and task regressor) predominantly yielding overconnectivity in ASD, but co-activation analyses (no low bandpass filter or task removal) mostly generating underconnectivity findings. These results suggest that methodological variables have dramatic impact on group differences reported in fcMRI studies. Improved awareness of their implications appears indispensible in fcMRI studies when inferences about "underconnectivity" or "overconnectivity" in ASD are made. In the absence of a gold standard for functional connectivity, the combination of different methodological approaches promises a more comprehensive understanding of connectivity in ASD.
PMID: 24452854 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Resting-state functional connectivity and pitch identification ability in non-musicians.
Front Neurosci. 2015;9:7
Authors: Hou J, Chen C, Dong Q
Previous studies have used task-related fMRI to investigate the neural basis of pitch identification (PI), but no study has examined the associations between resting-state functional connectivity (RSFC) and PI ability. Using a large sample of Chinese non-musicians (N = 320, with 56 having prior musical training), the current study examined the associations among musical training, PI ability, and RSFC. Results showed that musical training was associated with increased RSFC within the networks for multiple cognitive functions (such as vision, phonology, semantics, auditory encoding, and executive functions). PI ability was associated with RSFC with regions for perceptual and auditory encoding for participants with musical training, and with RSFC with regions for short-term memory, semantics, and phonology for participants without musical training.
PMID: 25717289 [PubMed]
Dissociable effects of local inhibitory and excitatory theta-burst stimulation on large-scale brain dynamics.
J Neurophysiol. 2015 Feb 25;:jn.00850.2014
Authors: Cocchi L, Sale MV, Lord A, Zalesky A, Breakspear M, Mattingley JB
Normal brain function depends on a dynamic balance between local specialization and large-scale integration. It remains unclear, however, how local changes in functionally specialized areas can influence integrated activity across larger brain networks. By combining transcranial magnetic stimulation with resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging, we tested for changes in large-scale integration following the application of excitatory or inhibitory stimulation on the human motor cortex. After local inhibitory stimulation, regions encompassing the sensorimotor module concurrently increased their internal integration, and decreased their communication with other modules of the brain. There were no such changes in modular dynamics following excitatory stimulation of the same area of motor cortex; nor were there changes in the configuration and interactions between core brain hubs after excitatory or inhibitory stimulation of the same area. These results suggest the existence of selective mechanisms that integrate local changes in neural activity, while preserving ongoing communication between brain hubs.
PMID: 25717162 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]
Altered spontaneous brain activity in heavy smokers revealed by regional homogeneity.
Psychopharmacology (Berl). 2015 Feb 27;
Authors: Wu G, Yang S, Zhu L, Lin F
RATIONALE: Task-state and resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies have revealed different brain responses in chronic cigarette smokers compared with healthy controls. However, little is known about the differences between chronic cigarette smokers and healthy subjects regarding the local synchronization of spontaneous brain activity in the resting state.
OBJECTIVES: In this study, we used regional homogeneity (ReHo) analysis based on resting-state fMRI to investigate intrinsic brain activity in heavy smokers.
METHODS: Thirty-one heavy smokers and 33 healthy non-smokers were included in this study. ReHo was used to measure spontaneous brain activity, and whole-brain voxel-wise comparisons of ReHo were performed to detect brain regions with altered spontaneous brain activity between groups.
RESULTS: Compared with non-smokers, heavy smokers showed decreased ReHo primarily in brain regions associated with the default-mode, frontoparietal attention, and inhibitory control networks; heavy smokers showed increased ReHo predominately in regions related to motor planning.
CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that heavy smokers may have altered spontaneous brain activity in some brain regions that are associated with higher cognitive networks. Moreover, our study improves the understanding of the effects of chronic cigarette smoking on spontaneous brain activity and the pathophysiological mechanisms of nicotine dependence.
PMID: 25716308 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]
Hierarchical and homotopic correlations of spontaneous neural activity within the visual cortex of the sighted and blind.
Front Hum Neurosci. 2015;9:25
Authors: Butt OH, Benson NC, Datta R, Aguirre GK
Spontaneous neural activity within visual cortex is synchronized by both monosynaptic, hierarchical connections between visual areas and indirect, network-level activity. We examined the interplay of hierarchical and network connectivity in human visual cortex by measuring the organization of spontaneous neural signals within the visual cortex in total darkness using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Twenty-five blind (14 congenital and 11 postnatal) participants with equally severe vision loss and 22 sighted subjects were studied. An anatomical template based on cortical surface topology was used for all subjects to identify the quarter-field components of visual areas V1-V3, and assign retinotopic organization. Cortical visual areas that represent the same quadrant of the visual field were considered to have a hierarchical relationship, while the spatially separated quarters of the same visual area were considered homotopic. Blindness was found to enhance correlations between hierarchical cortical areas as compared to indirect, homotopic areas at both the level of visual areas (p = 0.000031) and fine, retinotopic scale (p = 0.0024). A specific effect of congenital, but not postnatal, blindness was to further broaden the cortico-cortico connections between hierarchical visual areas (p = 0.0029). This finding is consistent with animal studies that observe a broadening of axonal terminal arborization when the visual cortex is deprived of early input. We therefore find separable roles for vision in developing and maintaining the intrinsic neural activity of visual cortex.
PMID: 25713519 [PubMed]
Resting State Functional Connectivity in Individuals with Down Syndrome and Williams Syndrome Compared to Typically Developing Controls.
Brain Connect. 2015 Feb 25;
Authors: Vega JN, Hohman TJ, Pryweller JR, Dykens EM, Thornton-Wells TA
The emergence of resting-state functional connectivity (rsFC) analysis, which examines temporal correlations of low-frequency (<0.1Hz) blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) signal fluctuations between brain regions, has dramatically improved our understanding of the functional architecture of the typically developing (TD) human brain. The current study examined rsFC in Down syndrome (DS) compared to another neurodevelopmental disorder, Williams syndrome (WS) and TD. Ten subjects with DS, 18 subjects with WS, and 40 subjects with TD each participated in a 3-Tesla MRI scan. We tested for group differences (DS vs. TD, DS vs. WS, and WS vs. TD) in between- and within-network rsFC connectivity for seven functional networks. For the DS group, we also examined associations between rsFC and other cognitive and genetic risk factors. In DS compared to TD, we observed higher levels of between-network connectivity in 6 out 21 network pairs, but no differences in within-network connectivity. Participants with WS showed lower levels of within-network connectivity and no significant differences in between-network connectivity relative to DS. Finally, our comparison between WS and TD controls revealed lower within-network connectivity in multiple networks and higher between-network connectivity in one network pair relative to TD controls. While preliminary due to modest sample sizes, our findings suggest a global difference in between-network connectivity in individuals with neurodevelopmental disorders compared to controls and that such a difference in exacerbated across many brain regions in DS. However, this alteration in DS does not appear to extend to within-network connections, and therefore, the altered between-network connectivity must be interpreted within the framework of an intact intra-network pattern of activity. In contrast, WS shows markedly lower levels of within-network connectivity in the DMN and somatomotor network relative to controls. These findings warrant further investigation using a task-based procedure that may help disentangle the relationship between brain function and cognitive performance across the spectrum of neurodevelopmental disorders.
PMID: 25712025 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]
Resting brain activity in disorders of consciousness: A systematic review and meta-analysis.
Neurology. 2015 Feb 20;
Authors: Hannawi Y, Lindquist MA, Caffo BS, Sair HI, Stevens RD
OBJECTIVE: To quantitatively synthesize results from neuroimaging studies that evaluated patterns of resting functional activity in patients with disorders of consciousness (DOC).
METHODS: We performed a systematic review and coordinate-based meta-analysis of studies published up to May 2014. Studies were included if they compared resting-state functional neuroimaging data acquired in patients with DOC (coma, minimally conscious state, emergence from minimally conscious state, or vegetative state) with a group of healthy controls. Coordinate-based meta-analysis was performed in studies that included voxel-based comparisons at the whole-brain level and if analysis was accomplished with data-driven approaches.
RESULTS: A total of 36 studies (687 patients, 637 healthy controls) were included in the systematic review. Reported DOC were vegetative state (43.2%), coma (23.4%), minimally conscious state (22.8%), and emergence from minimally conscious state (1.6%); the most common etiologies of DOC were traumatic brain injury (37.7%) and anoxic brain injury (36.9%). Functional neuroimaging was accomplished using fMRI (16 studies), PET (15 studies), SPECT (4 studies), and both PET and SPECT in one study. Meta-analysis in 13 studies (272 patients, 259 healthy controls) revealed consistently reduced activity in patients with DOC in bilateral medial dorsal nucleus of the thalamus, left cingulate, posterior cingulate, precuneus, and middle frontal and medial temporal gyri.
CONCLUSIONS: In patients with DOC evaluated in the resting state, functional neuroimaging indicates markedly reduced activity within midline cortical and subcortical sites, anatomical structures that have been linked to the default-mode network. Studies are needed to determine the relation between activation (and coherence) within these structures and the emergence of conscious awareness.
PMID: 25713001 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]
Presurgery resting-state local graph-theory measures predict neurocognitive outcomes after brain surgery in temporal lobe epilepsy.
Epilepsia. 2015 Feb 23;
Authors: Doucet GE, Rider R, Taylor N, Skidmore C, Sharan A, Sperling M, Tracy JI
OBJECTIVE: This study determined the ability of resting-state functional connectivity (rsFC) graph-theory measures to predict neurocognitive status postsurgery in patients with temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) who underwent anterior temporal lobectomy (ATL).
METHODS: A presurgical resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) condition was collected in 16 left and 16 right TLE patients who underwent ATL. In addition, patients received neuropsychological testing pre- and postsurgery in verbal and nonverbal episodic memory, language, working memory, and attention domains. Regarding the functional data, we investigated three graph-theory properties (local efficiency, distance, and participation), measuring segregation, integration and centrality, respectively. These measures were only computed in regions of functional relevance to the ictal pathology, or the cognitive domain. Linear regression analyses were computed to predict the change in each neurocognitive domain.
RESULTS: Our analyses revealed that cognitive outcome was successfully predicted with at least 68% of the variance explained in each model, for both TLE groups. The only model not significantly predictive involved nonverbal episodic memory outcome in right TLE. Measures involving the healthy hippocampus were the most common among the predictors, suggesting that enhanced integration of this structure with the rest of the brain may improve cognitive outcomes. Regardless of TLE group, left inferior frontal regions were the best predictors of language outcome. Working memory outcome was predicted mostly by right-sided regions, in both groups. Overall, the results indicated our integration measure was the most predictive of neurocognitive outcome. In contrast, our segregation measure was the least predictive.
SIGNIFICANCE: This study provides evidence that presurgery rsFC measures may help determine neurocognitive outcomes following ATL. The results have implications for refining our understanding of compensatory reorganization and predicting cognitive outcome after ATL. The results are encouraging with regard to the clinical relevance of using graph-theory measures in presurgical algorithms in the setting of TLE.
PMID: 25708625 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]
Acute effects of alcohol on the human brain: a resting-state FMRI study.
Biomed Res Int. 2015;2015:947529
Authors: Zheng H, Kong L, Chen L, Zhang H, Zheng W
The aim of this study is to assess the value of resting-state fMRI in detecting the acute effects of alcohol on healthy human brains. Thirty-two healthy volunteers were studied by conventional MR imaging and resting-state fMRI prior to and 0.5 hours after initiation of acute alcohol administration. The fMRI data, acquired during the resting state, were correlated with different breath alcohol concentrations (BrAC). We use the posterior cingulate cortex/precuneus as a seed for the default mode network (DMN) analysis. ALFF and ReHo were also used to investigate spontaneous neural activity in the resting state. Conventional MR imaging showed no abnormalities on all subjects. Compared with the prior alcohol administration, the ALFF and ReHo also indicated some specific brain regions which are affected by alcohol, including the superior frontal gyrus, cerebellum, hippocampal gyrus, left basal ganglia, and right internal capsule. Functional connectivity of the DMN was affected by alcohol. This resting-state fMRI indicates that brain regions implicated are affected by alcohol and might provide a neural basis for alcohol's effects on behavioral performance.
PMID: 25705701 [PubMed - in process]
Frequency-dependent amplitude alterations of resting-state spontaneous fluctuations in late-onset depression.
Biomed Res Int. 2015;2015:505479
Authors: Yue Y, Jia X, Hou Z, Zang Y, Yuan Y
There is limited amplitude of low-frequency fluctuation (ALFF) of resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies in late-onset depression (LOD) but reported different results. This may be due to the impact of different frequency bands. In this study, we examined the ALFF in five different frequency bands (slow-6: 0-0.01 Hz; slow-5: 0.01-0.027 Hz; slow-4: 0.027-0.073 Hz; slow-3: 0.073-0.167 Hz, and slow-2: 0.167-0.25 Hz) within the whole brain during resting-state fMRI in 16 LOD patients and 16 normal control (NC) subjects. The ALFF of primary effect of disease was widely distributed over left cerebellum anterior lobe, left cerebellum posterior lobe, left middle orbitofrontal gyrus, left superior occipital, and right superior parietal, while the interaction effect of disease and frequency was distributed over right superior frontal gyrus. Further relationship analysis findings suggest these abnormal ALFF may relate to cognitive dysfunction of LOD. Therefore, our data show that LOD patients have widespread abnormalities in intrinsic brain activity, which is dependent on the frequency band, and suggest that future studies should take the frequency bands into account when measuring intrinsic brain activity.
PMID: 25705666 [PubMed - in process]
Cognitive enhancement of healthy young adults with hyperbaric oxygen: A preliminary resting-state fMRI study.
Clin Neurophysiol. 2015 Jan 24;
Authors: Yu R, Wang B, Li S, Wang J, Zhou F, Chu S, He X, Wen X, Ni X, Liu L, Xie Q, Huang R
OBJECTIVE: To date, no study has examined the effect of hyperbaric oxygen (HBO) on the cognitive performance and spontaneous brain activity in healthy adults using resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rsfMRI). Our aim was to reveal the neural mechanism underlying the change in cognitive performance caused by increased oxygen.
METHODS: In this study, we acquired fMRI data from 20 healthy young adults and used placebo-controlled (PBO) rsfMRI to identify the effect of HBO on the cognitive measures and the regional homogeneity (ReHo) in healthy adults.
RESULTS: Compared to the PBO group, the HBO group showed the following: (1) the scores of the spatial working memory and memory quotient were significantly increased after HBO administration; (2) the ReHo value was significantly increased in three clusters, the left hippocampus, right inferior frontal, and lingual gyri, and for these three clusters, their functional connectivity with the subcortical brain system was significantly increased after HBO administration; and (3) the changes of ReHo values in these clusters generated by HBO administration were correlated with several aspects of cognitive performance, clarifying the cognitive locus of the effect.
CONCLUSION: Our results suggested that the increased availability of oxygen can, to some extent, improve memory performance.
SIGNIFICANT: Our findings may improve our understanding of the role of HBO in clinical and practical applications.
PMID: 25703942 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]
Liver transplantation nearly normalizes brain spontaneous activity and cognitive function at 1 month: a resting-state functional MRI study.
Metab Brain Dis. 2015 Feb 24;
Authors: Cheng Y, Huang L, Zhang X, Zhong J, Ji Q, Xie S, Chen L, Zuo P, Zhang LJ, Shen W
To investigate the short-term brain activity changes in cirrhotic patients with Liver transplantation (LT) using resting-state functional MRI (fMRI) with regional homogeneity (ReHo) method. Twenty-six cirrhotic patients as transplant candidates and 26 healthy controls were included in this study. The assessment was repeated for a sub-group of 12 patients 1 month after LT. ReHo values were calculated to evaluate spontaneous brain activity and whole brain voxel-wise analysis was carried to detect differences between groups. Correlation analyses were performed to explore the relationship between the change of ReHo with the change of clinical indexes pre- and post-LT. Compared to pre-LT, ReHo values increased in the bilateral inferior frontal gyrus (IFG), right inferior parietal lobule (IPL), right supplementary motor area (SMA), right STG and left middle frontal gyrus (MFG) in patients post-LT. Compared to controls, ReHo values of post-LT patients decreased in the right precuneus, right SMA and increased in bilateral temporal pole, left caudate, left MFG, and right STG. The changes of ReHo in the right SMA, STG and IFG were correlated with change of digit symbol test (DST) scores (P < 0.05 uncorrected). This study found that, at 1 month after LT, spontaneous brain activity of most brain regions with decreased ReHo in pre-LT was substantially improved and nearly normalized, while spontaneous brain activity of some brain regions with increased ReHo in pre-LT continuously increased. ReHo may provide information on the neural mechanisms of LT' effects on brain function.
PMID: 25703240 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]
Functional connectivity during rested wakefulness predicts vulnerability to sleep deprivation.
Neuroimage. 2015 Feb 17;
Authors: Yeo TB, Tandi J, Chee MW
Significant inter-individual differences in vigilance decline following sleep deprivation exist. We characterized functional connectivity in 68 healthy young adult participants in rested wakefulness and following a night of total sleep deprivation. After whole brain signal regression, functionally connected cortical networks during the well-rested state exhibited reduced correlation following sleep deprivation, suggesting that highly integrated brain regions become less integrated during sleep deprivation. In contrast, anti-correlations in the well-rested state became less so following sleep deprivation, suggesting that highly segregated networks become less segregated during sleep deprivation. Subjects more resilient to vigilance decline following sleep deprivation showed stronger anti-correlations among several networks. The weaker anti-correlations overlapped with connectivity alterations following sleep deprivation. Resilient individuals thus evidence clearer separation of highly segregated cortical networks in the well-rested state. In contrast to corticocortical connectivity, subcortical-cortical connectivity was comparable across resilient and vulnerable groups despite prominent state-related changes in both groups. Because sleep deprivation results in a significant elevation of whole brain signal amplitude, the aforesaid signal changes and group contrasts may be masked in analyses omitting their regression, suggesting possible value in regressing whole brain signal in certain experimental contexts.
PMID: 25700949 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]
Amplitude of Low-frequency Oscillations in Parkinson's Disease: A 2-year Longitudinal Resting-state Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging Study.
Chin Med J (Engl). 2015;128(5):593-601
Authors: Hu XF, Zhang JQ, Jiang XM, Zhou CY, Wei LQ, Yin XT, Li J, Zhang YL, Wang J
BACKGROUND: Neuroimaging studies have found that functional changes exist in patients with Parkinson's disease (PD). However, the majority of functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies in patients with PD are task-related and cross-sectional. This study investigated the functional changes observed in patients with PD, at both baseline and after 2 years, using resting-state fMRI. It further investigated the relationship between whole-brain spontaneous neural activity of patients with PD and their clinical characteristics.
METHODS: Seventeen patients with PD underwent an MRI procedure at both baseline and after 2 years using resting-state fMRI that was derived from the same 3T MRI. In addition, 20 age- and sex-matched, healthy controls were examined using resting-state fMRI. The fractional amplitude of low-frequency fluctuation (fALFF) approach was used to analyze the fMRI data. Nonlinear registration was used to model within-subject changes over the scanning interval, as well as changes between the patients with PD and the healthy controls. A correlative analysis between the fALFF values and clinical characteristics was performed in the regions showing fALFF differences.
RESULTS: Compared to the control subjects, the patients with PD showed increased fALFF values in the left inferior temporal gyrus, right inferior parietal lobule (IPL) and right middle frontal gyrus. Compared to the baseline in the 2 years follow-up, the patients with PD presented with increased fALFF values in the right middle temporal gyrus and right middle occipital gyrus while also having decreased fALFF values in the right cerebellum, right thalamus, right striatum, left superior parietal lobule, left IPL, left precentral gyrus, and left postcentral gyrus (P < 0.01, after correction with AlphaSim). In addition, the fALFF values in the right cerebellum were positively correlated with the Unified PD Rating Scale (UPDRS) motor scores (r = 0.51, P < 0.05, uncorrected) and the change in the UPDRS motor score (r = 0.61, P < 0.05, uncorrected).
CONCLUSIONS: The baseline and longitudinal changes of the fALFF values in our study suggest that dysfunction in the brain may affect the regions related to cortico-striato-pallido-thalamic loops and cerebello-thalamo-cortical loops as the disease progresses and that alterations to the spontaneous neural activity of the cerebellum may also play an important role in the disease's progression in patients with PD.
PMID: 25698189 [PubMed - in process]
Major depressive disorder is associated with abnormal interoceptive activity and functional connectivity in the insula.
Biol Psychiatry. 2014 Aug 1;76(3):258-66
Authors: Avery JA, Drevets WC, Moseman SE, Bodurka J, Barcalow JC, Simmons WK
BACKGROUND: Somatic complaints and altered interoceptive awareness are common features in the clinical presentation of major depressive disorder (MDD). Recently, neurobiological evidence has accumulated demonstrating that the insula is one of the primary cortical structures underlying interoceptive awareness. Abnormal interoceptive representation within the insula may thus contribute to the pathophysiology and symptomatology of MDD.
METHODS: We compared functional magnetic resonance imaging blood oxygenation level-dependent responses between 20 unmedicated adults with MDD and 20 healthy control participants during a task requiring attention to visceral interoceptive sensations and also assessed the relationship of this blood oxygenation level-dependent response to depression severity, as rated using the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale. Additionally, we examined between-group differences in insula resting-state functional connectivity and its relationship to Hamilton Depression Rating Scale ratings of depression severity.
RESULTS: Relative to the healthy control subjects, unmedicated MDD subjects exhibited decreased activity bilaterally in the dorsal mid-insula cortex (dmIC) during interoception. Activity within the insula during the interoceptive attention task was negatively correlated with both depression severity and somatic symptom severity in depressed subjects. Major depressive disorder also was associated with greater resting-state functional connectivity between the dmIC and limbic brain regions implicated previously in MDD, including the amygdala, subgenual prefrontal cortex, and orbitofrontal cortex. Moreover, functional connectivity between these regions and the dmIC was positively correlated with depression severity.
CONCLUSIONS: Major depressive disorder and the somatic symptoms of depression are associated with abnormal interoceptive representation within the insula.
PMID: 24387823 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Investigating univariate temporal patterns for intrinsic connectivity networks based on complexity and low-frequency oscillation: a test-retest reliability study.
Neuroscience. 2013 Dec 19;254:404-26
Authors: Wang X, Jiao Y, Tang T, Wang H, Lu Z
Intrinsic connectivity networks (ICNs) are composed of spatial components and time courses. The spatial components of ICNs were discovered with moderate-to-high reliability. So far as we know, few studies focused on the reliability of the temporal patterns for ICNs based their individual time courses. The goals of this study were twofold: to investigate the test-retest reliability of temporal patterns for ICNs, and to analyze these informative univariate metrics. Additionally, a correlation analysis was performed to enhance interpretability. Our study included three datasets: (a) short- and long-term scans, (b) multi-band echo-planar imaging (mEPI), and (c) eyes open or closed. Using dual regression, we obtained the time courses of ICNs for each subject. To produce temporal patterns for ICNs, we applied two categories of univariate metrics: network-wise complexity and network-wise low-frequency oscillation. Furthermore, we validated the test-retest reliability for each metric. The network-wise temporal patterns for most ICNs (especially for default mode network, DMN) exhibited moderate-to-high reliability and reproducibility under different scan conditions. Network-wise complexity for DMN exhibited fair reliability (ICC<0.5) based on eyes-closed sessions. Specially, our results supported that mEPI could be a useful method with high reliability and reproducibility. In addition, these temporal patterns were with physiological meanings, and certain temporal patterns were correlated to the node strength of the corresponding ICN. Overall, network-wise temporal patterns of ICNs were reliable and informative and could be complementary to spatial patterns of ICNs for further study.
PMID: 24042040 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
When the brain takes a break: a model-based analysis of mind wandering.
J Neurosci. 2014 Dec 3;34(49):16286-95
Authors: Mittner M, Boekel W, Tucker AM, Turner BM, Heathcote A, Forstmann BU
Mind wandering is an ubiquitous phenomenon in everyday life. In the cognitive neurosciences, mind wandering has been associated with several distinct neural processes, most notably increased activity in the default mode network (DMN), suppressed activity within the anti-correlated (task-positive) network (ACN), and changes in neuromodulation. By using an integrative multimodal approach combining machine-learning techniques with modeling of latent cognitive processes, we show that mind wandering in humans is characterized by inefficiencies in executive control (task-monitoring) processes. This failure is predicted by a single-trial signature of (co)activations in the DMN, ACN, and neuromodulation, and accompanied by a decreased rate of evidence accumulation and response thresholds in the cognitive model.
PMID: 25471568 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Resting-State Temporal Synchronization Networks Emerge from Connectivity Topology and Heterogeneity.
PLoS Comput Biol. 2015 Feb;11(2):e1004100
Authors: Ponce-Alvarez A, Deco G, Hagmann P, Romani GL, Mantini D, Corbetta M
Spatial patterns of coherent activity across different brain areas have been identified during the resting-state fluctuations of the brain. However, recent studies indicate that resting-state activity is not stationary, but shows complex temporal dynamics. We were interested in the spatiotemporal dynamics of the phase interactions among resting-state fMRI BOLD signals from human subjects. We found that the global phase synchrony of the BOLD signals evolves on a characteristic ultra-slow (<0.01Hz) time scale, and that its temporal variations reflect the transient formation and dissolution of multiple communities of synchronized brain regions. Synchronized communities reoccurred intermittently in time and across scanning sessions. We found that the synchronization communities relate to previously defined functional networks known to be engaged in sensory-motor or cognitive function, called resting-state networks (RSNs), including the default mode network, the somato-motor network, the visual network, the auditory network, the cognitive control networks, the self-referential network, and combinations of these and other RSNs. We studied the mechanism originating the observed spatiotemporal synchronization dynamics by using a network model of phase oscillators connected through the brain's anatomical connectivity estimated using diffusion imaging human data. The model consistently approximates the temporal and spatial synchronization patterns of the empirical data, and reveals that multiple clusters that transiently synchronize and desynchronize emerge from the complex topology of anatomical connections, provided that oscillators are heterogeneous.
PMID: 25692996 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]