Shared and connection-specific intrinsic interactions in the default mode network

Neuroimage. 2019 Oct 15;200:474-481. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2019.07.007. Epub 2019 Jul 4.


Electrophysiological studies revealed that different neuronal oscillations, among which the alpha (8-13 Hz) rhythm in particular, but also the beta (13-30 Hz) and gamma (30-80 Hz) rhythms, are modulated during rest in the default mode network (DMN). Little is known, however, about the role of these rhythms in supporting DMN connectivity. Biophysical studies suggest that lower and higher frequencies mediate long- and short-range connectivity, respectively. Accordingly, we hypothesized that interactions between all DMN areas are supported by the alpha rhythm, and that the connectivity between specific DMN areas is established through other frequencies, mainly in the beta and/or gamma bands. To test this hypothesis, we used high-density electroencefalographic data collected in 19 healthy volunteers at rest. We analyzed frequency-dependent functional interactions between four main DMN nodes in a broad (1-80 Hz) frequency range. In line with our hypothesis, we found that the frequency-dependent connectivity profile between pairs of DMN nodes had a peak at 9-11 Hz. Also, the connectivity profile showed other peaks at higher frequencies, which depended on the specific connection. Overall, our findings suggest that frequency-dependent connectivity analysis may be a powerful tool to better understand how different neuronal oscillations support connectivity within and between brain networks.

Keywords: Default mode network; Electroencephalography; Functional connectivity; Intrinsic brain activity; Neuronal communication; Resting state; Time-frequency analysis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Brain Waves / physiology*
  • Cerebral Cortex / diagnostic imaging
  • Cerebral Cortex / physiology*
  • Connectome / methods*
  • Electroencephalography / methods*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging / methods*
  • Male
  • Nerve Net / diagnostic imaging
  • Nerve Net / physiology*
  • Young Adult