Functional interactions in the brain: use of correlations between regional metabolic rates

J Cereb Blood Flow Metab. 1991 Mar;11(2):A114-20. doi: 10.1038/jcbfm.1991.46.


Correlation coefficients between pairs of regional metabolic rates have been used to study patterns of functional associations among brain regions in humans and animals. An overview is provided concerning the additional information about brain functioning this type of analysis yields. A computer simulation model is presented for the purpose of giving a partial validation for correlational analysis. The model generates a set of simulated metabolic data upon which correlational analysis is performed. Because the underlying pattern of functional couplings in the model is known, these simulations demonstrate that the correlation coefficient between normalized metabolic rates is proportional to the strength of the functional coupling constant and that correlational analysis yields information on regional involvement in neural systems not evident in the pattern of absolute metabolic values.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Brain / anatomy & histology
  • Brain / diagnostic imaging
  • Brain / metabolism*
  • Computer Simulation
  • Deoxyglucose / analogs & derivatives
  • Female
  • Fluorodeoxyglucose F18
  • Glucose / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Kinetics
  • Male
  • Mathematics
  • Models, Biological
  • Tomography, Emission-Computed*


  • Fluorodeoxyglucose F18
  • Deoxyglucose
  • Glucose