Reconfigurable task-dependent functional coupling modes cluster around a core functional architecture

Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci. 2014 Oct 5;369(1653):20130526. doi: 10.1098/rstb.2013.0526.


Functional coupling across distributed brain regions varies across task contexts, yet there are stable features. To better understand the range and central tendencies of network configurations, coupling patterns were explored using functional MRI (fMRI) across 14 distinct continuously performed task states ranging from passive fixation to increasingly demanding classification tasks. Mean global correlation profiles across the cortex ranged from 0.69 to 0.82 between task states. Network configurations from both passive fixation and classification tasks similarly predicted task coactivation patterns estimated from meta-analysis of the literature. Thus, even across markedly different task states, central tendencies dominate the coupling configurations. Beyond these shared components, distinct task states displayed significant differences in coupling patterns in response to their varied demands. One possibility is that anatomical connectivity provides constraints that act as attractors pulling network configurations towards a limited number of robust states. Reconfigurable coupling modes emerge as significant modifications to a core functional architecture.

Keywords: MRI; cortical networks; functional connectivity; intrinsic connectivity; resting-state.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Brain / anatomy & histology*
  • Brain / physiology*
  • Cluster Analysis
  • Connectome*
  • Humans
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted
  • Linear Models
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Nerve Net / physiology*
  • Perception / physiology*
  • Physical Stimulation
  • Psychomotor Performance / physiology*
  • Word Association Tests