Commenced in January 2007
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Edition: International
Paper Count: 5

functional connectivity Related Abstracts

5 Altered Network Organization in Mild Alzheimer's Disease Compared to Mild Cognitive Impairment Using Resting-State EEG

Authors: Chia-Feng Lu, Yuh-Jen Wang, Shin Teng, Yu-Te Wu, Sui-Hing Yan


Brain functional networks based on resting-state EEG data were compared between patients with mild Alzheimer’s disease (mAD) and matched patients with amnestic subtype of mild cognitive impairment (aMCI). We integrated the time–frequency cross mutual information (TFCMI) method to estimate the EEG functional connectivity between cortical regions and the network analysis based on graph theory to further investigate the alterations of functional networks in mAD compared with aMCI group. We aimed at investigating the changes of network integrity, local clustering, information processing efficiency, and fault tolerance in mAD brain networks for different frequency bands based on several topological properties, including degree, strength, clustering coefficient, shortest path length, and efficiency. Results showed that the disruptions of network integrity and reductions of network efficiency in mAD characterized by lower degree, decreased clustering coefficient, higher shortest path length, and reduced global and local efficiencies in the delta, theta, beta2, and gamma bands were evident. The significant changes in network organization can be used in assisting discrimination of mAD from aMCI in clinical.

Keywords: Graph Theory, eeg, functional connectivity, TFCMI

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4 Relations of Progression in Cognitive Decline with Initial EEG Resting-State Functional Network in Mild Cognitive Impairment

Authors: Chia-Feng Lu, Yuh-Jen Wang, Yu-Te Wu, Sui-Hing Yan


This study aimed at investigating whether the functional brain networks constructed using the initial EEG (obtained when patients first visited hospital) can be correlated with the progression of cognitive decline calculated as the changes of mini-mental state examination (MMSE) scores between the latest and initial examinations. We integrated the time–frequency cross mutual information (TFCMI) method to estimate the EEG functional connectivity between cortical regions, and the network analysis based on graph theory to investigate the organization of functional networks in aMCI. Our finding suggested that higher integrated functional network with sufficient connection strengths, dense connection between local regions, and high network efficiency in processing information at the initial stage may result in a better prognosis of the subsequent cognitive functions for aMCI. In conclusion, the functional connectivity can be a useful biomarker to assist in prediction of cognitive declines in aMCI.

Keywords: Cognitive Decline, functional connectivity, MCI, MMSE

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3 Structural and Functional Correlates of Reaction Time Variability in a Large Sample of Healthy Adolescents and Adolescents with ADHD Symptoms

Authors: Laura O’Halloran, Zhipeng Cao, Clare M. Kelly, Hugh Garavan, Robert Whelan


Reaction time (RT) variability on cognitive tasks provides the index of the efficiency of executive control processes (e.g. attention and inhibitory control) and is considered to be a hallmark of clinical disorders, such as attention-deficit disorder (ADHD). Increased RT variability is associated with structural and functional brain differences in children and adults with various clinical disorders, as well as poorer task performance accuracy. Furthermore, the strength of functional connectivity across various brain networks, such as the negative relationship between the task-negative default mode network and task-positive attentional networks, has been found to reflect differences in RT variability. Although RT variability may provide an index of attentional efficiency, as well as being a useful indicator of neurological impairment, the brain substrates associated with RT variability remain relatively poorly defined, particularly in a healthy sample. Method: Firstly, we used the intra-individual coefficient of variation (ICV) as an index of RT variability from “Go” responses on the Stop Signal Task. We then examined the functional and structural neural correlates of ICV in a large sample of 14-year old healthy adolescents (n=1719). Of these, a subset had elevated symptoms of ADHD (n=80) and was compared to a matched non-symptomatic control group (n=80). The relationship between brain activity during successful and unsuccessful inhibitions and gray matter volume were compared with the ICV. A mediation analysis was conducted to examine if specific brain regions mediated the relationship between ADHD symptoms and ICV. Lastly, we looked at functional connectivity across various brain networks and quantified both positive and negative correlations during “Go” responses on the Stop Signal Task. Results: The brain data revealed that higher ICV was associated with increased structural and functional brain activation in the precentral gyrus in the whole sample and in adolescents with ADHD symptoms. Lower ICV was associated with lower activation in the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) and medial frontal gyrus in the whole sample and in the control group. Furthermore, our results indicated that activation in the precentral gyrus (Broadman Area 4) mediated the relationship between ADHD symptoms and behavioural ICV. Conclusion: This is the first study first to investigate the functional and structural correlates of ICV collectively in a large adolescent sample. Our findings demonstrate a concurrent increase in brain structure and function within task-active prefrontal networks as a function of increased RT variability. Furthermore, structural and functional brain activation patterns in the ACC, and medial frontal gyrus plays a role-optimizing top-down control in order to maintain task performance. Our results also evidenced clear differences in brain morphometry between adolescents with symptoms of ADHD but without clinical diagnosis and typically developing controls. Our findings shed light on specific functional and structural brain regions that are implicated in ICV and yield insights into effective cognitive control in healthy individuals and in clinical groups.

Keywords: ADHD, fmri, functional connectivity, reaction-time variability, default mode

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2 Task Based Functional Connectivity within Reward Network in Food Image Viewing Paradigm Using Functional MRI

Authors: Preetham Shankapal, Jill King, Kori Murray, Corby Martin, Paula Giselman, Jason Hicks, Owen Carmicheal


Activation of reward and satiety networks in the brain while processing palatable food cues, as well as functional connectivity during rest has been studied using functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging of the brain in various obesity phenotypes. However, functional connectivity within the reward and satiety network during food cue processing is understudied. 14 obese individuals underwent two fMRI scans during viewing of Macronutrient Picture System images. Each scan included two blocks of images of High Sugar/High Fat (HSHF), High Carbohydrate/High Fat (HCHF), Low Sugar/Low Fat (LSLF) and also non-food images. Seed voxels within seven food reward relevant ROIs: Insula, putamen and cingulate, precentral, parahippocampal, medial frontal and superior temporal gyri were isolated based on a prior meta-analysis. Beta series correlation for task-related functional connectivity between these seed voxels and the rest of the brain was computed. Voxel-level differences in functional connectivity were calculated between: first and the second scan; individuals who saw novel (N=7) vs. Repeated (N=7) images in the second scan; and between the HC/HF, HSHF blocks vs LSLF and non-food blocks. Computations and analysis showed that during food image viewing, reward network ROIs showed significant functional connectivity with each other and with other regions responsible for attentional and motor control, including inferior parietal lobe and precentral gyrus. These functional connectivity values were heightened among individuals who viewed novel HS/HF images in the second scan. In the second scan session, functional connectivity was reduced within the reward network but increased within attention, memory and recognition regions, suggesting habituation to reward properties and increased recollection of previously viewed images. In conclusion it can be inferred that Functional Connectivity within reward network and between reward and other brain regions, varies by important experimental conditions during food photography viewing, including habituation to shown foods.

Keywords: fmri, functional connectivity, task-based, beta series correlation

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1 Effects of Oxytocin on Neural Response to Facial Emotion Recognition in Schizophrenia

Authors: Avyarthana Dey, Naren P. Rao, Arpitha Jacob, Chaitra V. Hiremath, Shivarama Varambally, Ganesan Venkatasubramanian, Rose Dawn Bharath, Bangalore N. Gangadhar


Objective: Impaired facial emotion recognition is widely reported in schizophrenia. Neuropeptide oxytocin is known to modulate brain regions involved in facial emotion recognition, namely amygdala, in healthy volunteers. However, its effect on facial emotion recognition deficits seen in schizophrenia is not well explored. In this study, we examined the effect of intranasal OXT on processing facial emotions and its neural correlates in patients with schizophrenia. Method: 12 male patients (age= 31.08±7.61 years, education= 14.50±2.20 years) participated in this single-blind, counterbalanced functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) study. All participants underwent three fMRI scans; one at baseline, one each after single dose 24IU intranasal OXT and intranasal placebo. The order of administration of OXT and placebo were counterbalanced and subject was blind to the drug administered. Participants performed a facial emotion recognition task presented in a block design with six alternating blocks of faces and shapes. The faces depicted happy, angry or fearful emotions. The images were preprocessed and analyzed using SPM 12. First level contrasts comparing recognition of emotions and shapes were modelled at individual subject level. A group level analysis was performed using the contrasts generated at the first level to compare the effects of intranasal OXT and placebo. The results were thresholded at uncorrected p < 0.001 with a cluster size of 6 voxels. Neuropeptide oxytocin is known to modulate brain regions involved in facial emotion recognition, namely amygdala, in healthy volunteers. Results: Compared to placebo, intranasal OXT attenuated activity in inferior temporal, fusiform and parahippocampal gyri (BA 20), premotor cortex (BA 6), middle frontal gyrus (BA 10) and anterior cingulate gyrus (BA 24) and enhanced activity in the middle occipital gyrus (BA 18), inferior occipital gyrus (BA 19), and superior temporal gyrus (BA 22). There were no significant differences between the conditions on the accuracy scores of emotion recognition between baseline (77.3±18.38), oxytocin (82.63 ± 10.92) or Placebo (76.62 ± 22.67). Conclusion: Our results provide further evidence to the modulatory effect of oxytocin in patients with schizophrenia. Single dose oxytocin resulted in significant changes in activity of brain regions involved in emotion processing. Future studies need to examine the effectiveness of long-term treatment with OXT for emotion recognition deficits in patients with schizophrenia.

Keywords: Recognition, Schizophrenia, Social Cognition, functional connectivity, oxytocin

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