Altered resting-state network connectivity in congenital blind.
ABSTRACT: The brain of congenital blind (CB) has experienced a series of structural and functional alterations, either undesirable outcomes such as atrophy of the visual pathway due to sight loss from birth, or compensatory plasticity to interact efficiently with the environment. However, little is known, so far, about alterations in the functional architecture of resting-state networks (RSNs) in CB. This study aimed to investigate intra- and internetwork connectivity differences between CB and sighted controls (SC), using independent component analysis (ICA) on resting state functional MRI data. Compared with SC, CB showed significantly increased network connectivity within the salience network (SN) and the occipital cortex. Moreover, CB exhibited enhanced internetwork connectivity between the SN and the frontoparietal network (FPN) and between the FPN and the occipital cortex; however, they showed decreased internetwork connectivity between the occipital cortex and the sensorimotor network. These findings suggest that CB experience large scale reorganization at the level of the functional network. More importantly, the enhanced intra- and internetwork connectivity of the SN, FPN, and occipital cortex in CB may improve their abilities to identify salient stimuli, to initiate the executive function, and to top-down control of attention, which are critical for the CB to guide appropriate behavior and to better adaption to the environment.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Internalizing symptoms like anxiety and depression are common and impairing in autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Here, we test the hypothesis that aberrant functional connectivity among three brain networks (salience network [SN], default mode network [DMN], and frontoparietal network [FPN]) plays a role in the pathophysiology of internalizing in ASD. METHODS:We examined the association between resting-state functional connectivity and internalizing in 102 adolescents and young adults with ASD (n = 49) or typical development (n = 53). Seed-to-target functional connectivity was contrasted between adolescents and young adults with ASD and typically developing subjects using a recent parcellation of the human cerebral cortex, and connections that were aberrant in ASD were analyzed dimensionally as a function of parent-reported internalizing symptoms. RESULTS:Three connections demonstrated robust overconnectivity in ASD: 1) the anterior insula to the retrosplenial cortex (i.e., SN-DMN), 2) the anterior insula to the frontal pole (i.e., SN-FPN), and 3) the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex to the retrosplenial cortex (i.e., FPN-DMN). These differences remained significant after controlling for age, and no age-related effects survived correction. The SN-DMN connection was associated with greater internalizing in ASD, mediated by a bigger difference between self- and parent-reported internalizing. Control analyses found that the other two connections were not associated with internalizing, and SN-DMN connectivity was not associated with a well-matched control measure (externalizing symptoms). CONCLUSIONS:The present findings provide novel evidence for a specific link between SN-DMN overconnectivity and internalizing in ASD. Further, the mediation results suggest that intact anterior insula-retrosplenial connectivity may play a role in an individual's generating insight into his or her own psychopathology.
Project description:This study aimed to investigate the changes in functional connectivity (FC) within each resting-state network (RSN) and between RSNs in subcortical stroke patients who were well recovered in global motor function. Eleven meaningful RSNs were identified via functional magnetic resonance imaging data from 25 subcortical stroke patients and 22 normal controls using independent component analysis. Compared with normal controls, stroke patients exhibited increased intranetwork FC in the sensorimotor (SMN), visual (VN), auditory (AN), dorsal attention (DAN), and default mode (DMN) networks; they also exhibited decreased intranetwork FC in the frontoparietal network (FPN) and anterior DMN. Stroke patients displayed a shift from no FC in controls to negative internetwork FC between the VN and AN as well as between the VN and SMN. Stroke patients also exhibited weakened positive (anterior and posterior DMN; posterior DMN and right FPN) or negative (AN and right FPN; posterior DMN and dorsal SMN) internetwork FC when compared with normal controls. We suggest that subcortical stroke may induce connectivity changes in multiple functional networks, affecting not only the intranetwork FC within RSNs but also the internetwork FC between these RSNs.
Project description:The task-positive network (TPN) is anticorrelated with activity in the default mode network (DMN), and possibly reflects competition between the processing of external and internal information, while the salience network (SN) is pivotal in regulating TPN and DMN activity. Because abnormal functional connectivity in these networks has been related to schizophrenia, we tested whether alterations are also evident in subjects at risk for psychosis. Resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging was tested in 28 subjects with basic symptoms reporting subjective cognitive-perceptive symptoms; 19 with attenuated or brief, limited psychotic symptoms; and 29 matched healthy controls. We characterized spatial differences in connectivity patterns, as well as internetwork connectivity. Right anterior insula (rAI) was selected as seed region for identifying the SN; medioprefrontal cortex (MPFC) for the DMN and TPN. The 3 groups differed in connectivity patterns between the MPFC and right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (rDLPFC), and between the rAI and posterior cingulate cortex (PCC). In particular, the typically observed antagonistic relationship in MPFC-rDLPFC, rAI-PCC, and internetwork connectivity of DMN-TPN was absent in both at-risk groups. Notably, those connectivity patterns were associated with symptoms related to reality distortions, whereas enhanced connectivity strengths of MPFC-rDLPFC and TPN-DMN were related to poor performance in cognitive functions. We propose that the loss of a TPN-DMN anticorrelation, accompanied by an aberrant spatial extent in the DMN, TPN, and SN in the psychosis risk state, reflects the confusion of internally and externally focused states and disturbance of cognition, as seen in psychotic disorders.
Project description:Patients in minimally conscious state (MCS) have been subcategorized in MCS plus and MCS minus, based on command-following, intelligible verbalization or intentional communication. We here aimed to better characterize the functional neuroanatomy of MCS based on this clinical subcategorization by means of resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Resting state fMRI was acquired in 292 MCS patients and a seed-based analysis was conducted on a convenience sample of 10 MCS plus patients, 9 MCS minus patients and 35 healthy subjects. We investigated the left and right frontoparietal networks (FPN), auditory network, default mode network (DMN), thalamocortical connectivity and DMN between-network anticorrelations. We also employed an analysis based on regions of interest (ROI) to examine interhemispheric connectivity and investigated intergroup differences in gray/white matter volume by means of voxel-based morphometry. We found a higher connectivity in MCS plus as compared to MCS minus in the left FPN, specifically between the left dorso-lateral prefrontal cortex and left temporo-occipital fusiform cortex. No differences between patient groups were observed in the auditory network, right FPN, DMN, thalamocortical and interhemispheric connectivity, between-network anticorrelations and gray/white matter volume. Our preliminary group-level results suggest that the clinical subcategorization of MCS may involve functional connectivity differences in a language-related executive control network. MCS plus and minus patients are seemingly not differentiated by networks associated to auditory processing, perception of surroundings and internal awareness/self-mentation, nor by interhemispheric integration and structural brain damage.
Project description:The salience network (SN) serves to identify salient stimuli and to switch between the central executive network (CEN) and the default-mode network (DMN), both of which are impaired in Alzheimer's disease (AD)/amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI). We hypothesized that both the structural and functional organization of the SN and functional interactions between the SN and CEN/DMN are altered in normal aging and in AD/aMCI. Gray matter volume (GMV) and resting-state functional connectivity (FC) were analyzed from healthy younger (HYC) to older controls (HOC) and from HOC to aMCI and AD patients. All the SN components showed significant differences in the GMV, intranetwork FC, and internetwork FC between the HYC and HOC. Most of the SN components showed differences in the GMV between the HOC and AD and between the aMCI and AD. Compared with the HOC, AD patients exhibited significant differences in intra- and internetwork FCs of the SN, whereas aMCI patients demonstrated differences in internetwork FC of the SN. Most of the GMVs and internetwork FCs of the SN and part of the intranetwork FC of the SN were correlated with cognitive differences in older subjects. Our findings suggested that structural and functional impairments of the SN may occur as early as in normal aging and that functional disconnection between the SN and CEN/ DMN may also be associated with both normal aging and disease progression.
Project description:Creativity refers to the ability to generate novel associations and has been linked to better problem-solving and real-world functional abilities. In younger adults, creative cognition has been associated with functional connectivity among brain networks implicated in executive control [fronto-parietal network (FPN) and salience network (SN)] and associative or elaborative processing default network (DN). Here, we investigate whether creativity is associated with the intrinsic network architecture of the brain and how these associations may differ for younger and older adults. Young (mean age: 24.76, n = 22) and older (mean age: 70.03, n = 44) adults underwent multi-echo functional magnetic resonance image scanning at rest and completed a divergent-thinking task to assess creative cognition outside the scanner. Divergent thinking in older adults, compared to young adults, was associated with functional connectivity between the default and both executive control networks (FPN and SN) as well as more widespread default-executive coupling. Finally, the ventromedial prefrontal cortex appears to be a critical node involved in within- and between-network connectivity associated with creative cognition in older adulthood. Patterns of intrinsic network coupling revealed here suggest a putative neural mechanism underlying a greater role for mnemonic processes in creative cognition in older adulthood.
Project description:We examined whether interindividual differences in habitual sleep patterns, quantified as the cumulative habitual total sleep time (cTST) over a 2-w period, were reflected in waking measurements of intranetwork and internetwork functional connectivity (FC) between major nodes of three intrinsically connected networks (ICNs): default mode network (DMN), salience network (SN), and central executive network (CEN).Resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) study using seed-based FC analysis combined with 14-d wrist actigraphy, sleep diaries, and subjective questionnaires (N = 33 healthy adults, mean age 34.3, standard deviation ± 11.6 y). Data were statistically analyzed using multiple linear regression. Fourteen consecutive days of wrist actigraphy in participant's home environment and fMRI scanning on day 14 at the Birmingham University Imaging Centre. Seed-based FC analysis on ICNs from resting-state fMRI data and multiple linear regression analysis performed for each ICN seed and target. cTST was used to predict FC (controlling for age).cTST was specific predictor of intranetwork FC when the mesial prefrontal cortex (MPFC) region of the DMN was used as a seed for FC, with a positive correlation between FC and cTST observed. No significant relationship between FC and cTST was seen for any pair of nodes not including the MPFC. Internetwork FC between the DMN (MPFC) and SN (right anterior insula) was also predicted by cTST, with a negative correlation observed between FC and cTST.This study improves understanding of the relationship between intranetwork and internetwork functional connectivity of intrinsically connected networks (ICNs) in relation to habitual sleep quality and duration. The cumulative amount of sleep that participants achieved over a 14-d period was significantly predictive of intranetwork and inter-network functional connectivity of ICNs, an observation that may underlie the link between sleep status and cognitive performance.
Project description:The purpose of this work was to evaluate changes in the connectivity patterns of a set of cognitively relevant, dynamically interrelated brain networks in association with cognitive deficits in Parkinson's disease (PD) using resting-state functional MRI. Sixty-five nondemented PD patients and 36 matched healthy controls were included. Thirty-four percent of PD patients were classified as having mild cognitive impairment (MCI) based on performance in attention/executive, visuospatial/visuoperceptual (VS/VP) and memory functions. A data-driven approach using independent component analysis (ICA) was used to identify the default-mode network (DMN), the dorsal attention network (DAN) and the bilateral frontoparietal networks (FPN), which were compared between groups using a dual-regression approach controlling for gray matter atrophy. Additional seed-based analyses using a priori defined regions of interest were used to characterize local changes in intranetwork and internetwork connectivity. Structural group comparisons through voxel-based morphometry and cortical thickness were additionally performed to assess associated gray matter atrophy. ICA results revealed reduced connectivity between the DAN and right frontoinsular regions in MCI patients, associated with worse performance in attention/executive functions. The DMN displayed increased connectivity with medial and lateral occipito-parietal regions in MCI patients, associated with worse VS/VP performance, and with occipital reductions in cortical thickness. In line with data-driven results, seed-based analyses mainly revealed reduced within-DAN, within-DMN and DAN-FPN connectivity, as well as loss of normal DAN-DMN anticorrelation in MCI patients. Our findings demonstrate differential connectivity changes affecting the networks evaluated, which we hypothesize to be related to the pathophysiological bases of different types of cognitive impairment in PD.
Project description:Exploring the disruptions to intrinsic resting-state networks (RSNs) in schizophrenia-spectrum disorders yields a better understanding of the disease-specific pathophysiology. However, our knowledge of the neurobiological underpinnings of schizotypal personality disorders mostly relies on research on schizotypy or schizophrenia. This study aimed to investigate the RSN abnormalities of schizotypal personality disorder (SPD) and their clinical implications. Using resting-state data, the intra- and inter-network of the higher-order functional networks (default mode network, DMN; frontoparietal network, FPN; dorsal attention network, DAN; salience network, SN) were explored in 22 medication-free, community-dwelling, non-help seeking individuals diagnosed with SPD and 30 control individuals. Consequently, while there were no group differences in intra-network functional connectivity across DMN, FPN, DAN, and SN, the SPD participants exhibited attenuated anticorrelation between the right frontal eye field region of the DAN and the right posterior parietal cortex region of the FPN. The decreases in anticorrelation were correlated with increased cognitive-perceptual deficits and disorganization factors of the schizotypal personality questionnaire, as well as reduced independence-performance of the social functioning scale for all participants together. This study, which links SPD pathology and social functioning deficits, is the first evidence of impaired large-scale intrinsic brain networks in SPD.
Project description:The study of the congenitally blind (CB) represents a unique opportunity to explore experience-dependant plasticity in a sensory region deprived of its natural inputs since birth. Although several studies have shown occipital regions of CB to be involved in nonvisual processing, whether the functional organization of the visual cortex observed in sighted individuals (SI) is maintained in the rewired occipital regions of the blind has only been recently investigated. In the present functional MRI study, we compared the brain activity of CB and SI processing either the spatial or the pitch properties of sounds carrying information in both domains (i.e., the same sounds were used in both tasks), using an adaptive procedure specifically designed to adjust for performance level. In addition to showing a substantial recruitment of the occipital cortex for sound processing in CB, we also demonstrate that auditory-spatial processing mainly recruits the right cuneus and the right middle occipital gyrus, two regions of the dorsal occipital stream known to be involved in visuospatial/motion processing in SI. Moreover, functional connectivity analyses revealed that these reorganized occipital regions are part of an extensive brain network including regions known to underlie audiovisual spatial abilities (i.e., intraparietal sulcus, superior frontal gyrus). We conclude that some regions of the right dorsal occipital stream do not require visual experience to develop a specialization for the processing of spatial information and to be functionally integrated in a preexisting brain network dedicated to this ability.