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Neuronal message passing using Mean-field, Bethe, and Marginal approximations

Parr, T; Markovic, D; Kiebel, SJ; Friston, KJ; (2019) Neuronal message passing using Mean-field, Bethe, and Marginal approximations. Scientific Reports , 9 (1) , Article 1889. 10.1038/s41598-018-38246-3. Green open access

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Abstract

Neuronal computations rely upon local interactions across synapses. For a neuronal network to perform inference, it must integrate information from locally computed messages that are propagated among elements of that network. We review the form of two popular (Bayesian) message passing schemes and consider their plausibility as descriptions of inference in biological networks. These are variational message passing and belief propagation - each of which is derived from a free energy functional that relies upon different approximations (mean-field and Bethe respectively). We begin with an overview of these schemes and illustrate the form of the messages required to perform inference using Hidden Markov Models as generative models. Throughout, we use factor graphs to show the form of the generative models and of the messages they entail. We consider how these messages might manifest neuronally and simulate the inferences they perform. While variational message passing offers a simple and neuronally plausible architecture, it falls short of the inferential performance of belief propagation. In contrast, belief propagation allows exact computation of marginal posteriors at the expense of the architectural simplicity of variational message passing. As a compromise between these two extremes, we offer a third approach - marginal message passing - that features a simple architecture, while approximating the performance of belief propagation. Finally, we link formal considerations to accounts of neurological and psychiatric syndromes in terms of aberrant message passing.

Type: Article
Title: Neuronal message passing using Mean-field, Bethe, and Marginal approximations
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1038/s41598-018-38246-3
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-38246-3
Language: English
Additional information: This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
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 > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology > Imaging Neuroscience
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10069024
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