The homotopic connectivity of the functional brain: a meta-analytic approach

Sci Rep. 2019 Mar 4;9(1):3346. doi: 10.1038/s41598-019-40188-3.


Homotopic connectivity (HC) is the connectivity between mirror areas of the brain hemispheres. It can exhibit a marked and functionally relevant spatial variability, and can be perturbed by several pathological conditions. The voxel-mirrored homotopic connectivity (VMHC) is a technique devised to enquire this pattern of brain organization, based on resting state functional connectivity. Since functional connectivity can be revealed also in a meta-analytical fashion using co-activations, here we propose to calculate the meta-analytic homotopic connectivity (MHC) as the meta-analytic counterpart of the VMHC. The comparison between the two techniques reveals their general similarity, but also highlights regional differences associated with how HC varies from task to rest. Two main differences were found from rest to task: (i) regions known to be characterized by global hubness are more similar than regions displaying local hubness; and (ii) medial areas are characterized by a higher degree of homotopic connectivity, while lateral areas appear to decrease their degree of homotopic connectivity during task performance. These findings show that MHC can be an insightful tool to study how the hemispheres functionally interact during task and rest conditions.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't