Functional connectivity relationships predict similarities in task activation and pattern information during associative memory encoding

J Cogn Neurosci. 2014 May;26(5):1085-99. doi: 10.1162/jocn_a_00533. Epub 2013 Nov 27.


Neural systems may be characterized by measuring functional interactions in the healthy brain, but it is unclear whether components of systems defined in this way share functional properties. For instance, within the medial temporal lobes (MTL), different subregions show different patterns of cortical connectivity. It is unknown, however, whether these intrinsic connections predict similarities in how these regions respond during memory encoding. Here, we defined brain networks using resting state functional connectivity (RSFC) then quantified the functional similarity of regions within each network during an associative memory encoding task. Results showed that anterior MTL regions affiliated with a network of anterior temporal cortical regions, whereas posterior MTL regions affiliated with a network of posterior medial cortical regions. Importantly, these connectivity relationships also predicted similarities among regions during the associative memory task. Both in terms of task-evoked activation and trial-specific information carried in multivoxel patterns, regions within each network were more similar to one another than were regions in different networks. These findings suggest that functional heterogeneity among MTL subregions may be related to their participation in distinct large-scale cortical systems involved in memory. At a more general level, the results suggest that components of neural systems defined on the basis of RSFC share similar functional properties in terms of recruitment during cognitive tasks and information carried in voxel patterns.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Association Learning / physiology*
  • Female
  • Forecasting
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Memory / physiology*
  • Nerve Net / physiology*
  • Pattern Recognition, Visual / physiology*
  • Photic Stimulation / methods*
  • Psychomotor Performance / physiology*
  • Temporal Lobe / physiology
  • Young Adult