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Disambiguating brain functional connectivity

Duff, EP; Makin, T; Cottaar, M; Smith, SM; Woolrich, MW; (2018) Disambiguating brain functional connectivity. NeuroImage , 173 pp. 540-550. 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2018.01.053. Green open access

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Abstract

Functional connectivity (FC) analyses of correlations of neural activity are used extensively in neuroimaging and electrophysiology to gain insights into neural interactions. However, analyses assessing changes in correlation fail to distinguish effects produced by sources as different as changes in neural signal amplitudes or noise levels. This ambiguity substantially diminishes the value of FC for inferring system properties and clinical states. Network modelling approaches may avoid ambiguities, but require specific assumptions. We present an enhancement to FC analysis with improved specificity of inferences, minimal assumptions and no reduction in flexibility. The Additive Signal Change (ASC) approach characterizes FC changes into certain prevalent classes of signal change that involve the input of additional signal to existing activity. With FMRI data, the approach reveals a rich diversity of signal changes underlying measured changes in FC, suggesting that it could clarify our current understanding of FC changes in many contexts. The ASC method can also be used to disambiguate other measures of dependency, such as regression and coherence, providing a flexible tool for the analysis of neural data.

Type: Article
Title: Disambiguating brain functional connectivity
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2018.01.053
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neuroimage.2018.01.053
Language: English
Additional information: This is an open access article under the CC BY license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Keywords: Correlation, SNR, Functional connectivity, Effective connectivity, FMRI
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10061488
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