Science.gov

Sample records for reward-related brain function

  1. Circadian misalignment, reward-related brain function, and adolescent alcohol involvement.

    PubMed

    Hasler, Brant P; Clark, Duncan B

    2013-04-01

    Developmental changes in sleep and circadian rhythms that occur during adolescence may contribute to reward-related brain dysfunction, and consequently increase the risk of alcohol use disorders (AUDs). This review (i) describes marked changes in circadian rhythms, reward-related behavior and brain function, and alcohol involvement that occur during adolescence, (ii) offers evidence that these parallel developmental changes are associated, and (iii) posits a conceptual model by which misalignment between sleep-wake timing and endogenous circadian timing may increase the risk of adolescent AUDs by altering reward-related brain function. The timing of sleep shifts later throughout adolescence, in part due to developmental changes in endogenous circadian rhythms, which tend to become more delayed. This tendency for delayed sleep and circadian rhythms is at odds with early school start times during secondary education, leading to misalignment between many adolescents' sleep-wake schedules and their internal circadian timing. Circadian misalignment is associated with increased alcohol use and other risk-taking behaviors, as well as sleep loss and sleep disturbance. Growing evidence indicates that circadian rhythms modulate the reward system, suggesting that circadian misalignment may impact adolescent alcohol involvement by altering reward-related brain function. Neurocognitive function is also subject to sleep and circadian influence, and thus circadian misalignment may also impair inhibitory control and other cognitive processes relevant to alcohol use. Specifically, circadian misalignment may further exacerbate the cortical-subcortical imbalance within the reward circuit, an imbalance thought to explain increased risk-taking and sensation-seeking during adolescence. Adolescent alcohol use is highly contextualized, however, and thus studies testing this model will also need to consider factors that may influence both circadian misalignment and alcohol use. This review

  2. Circadian Misalignment, Reward-Related Brain Function, and Adolescent Alcohol Involvement

    PubMed Central

    Hasler, Brant P.; Clark, Duncan B.

    2013-01-01

    Background Developmental changes in sleep and circadian rhythms that occur during adolescence may contribute to reward-related brain dysfunction, and consequently increase the risk of alcohol use disorders (AUDs). Methods This review (a) describes marked changes in circadian rhythms, reward-related behavior and brain function, and alcohol involvement that occur during adolescence, (b) offers evidence that these parallel developmental changes are associated, and (c) posits a conceptual model by which misalignment between sleep-wake timing and endogenous circadian timing may increase the risk of adolescent AUDs by altering reward-related brain function. Results The timing of sleep shifts later throughout adolescence, in part due to developmental changes in endogenous circadian rhythms, which tend to become more delayed. This tendency for delayed sleep and circadian rhythms is at odds with early school start times during secondary education, leading to misalignment between many adolescents’ sleep-wake schedules and their internal circadian timing. Circadian misalignment is associated with increased alcohol use and other risk-taking behaviors, as well as sleep loss and sleep disturbance. Growing evidence indicates that circadian rhythms modulate the reward system, suggesting that circadian misalignment may impact adolescent alcohol involvement by altering reward-related brain function. Neurocognitive function is also subject to sleep and circadian influence, and thus circadian misalignment may also impair inhibitory control and other cognitive processes relevant to alcohol use. Specifically, circadian misalignment may further exacerbate the cortical-subcortical imbalance within the reward circuit, an imbalance thought to explain increased risk-taking and sensation-seeking during adolescence. Adolescent alcohol use is highly contexualized, however, and thus studies testing this model will also need to consider factors that may influence both circadian misalignment and

  3. Life stress in adolescence predicts early adult reward-related brain function and alcohol dependence

    PubMed Central

    Shaw, Daniel S.; Sitnick, Stephanie L.; Musselman, Samuel C.; Forbes, Erika E.

    2015-01-01

    Stressful life events increase vulnerability to problematic alcohol use, and they may do this by disrupting reward-related neural circuitry. This is particularly relevant for adolescents because alcohol use rises sharply after mid-adolescence and alcohol abuse peaks at age 20. Adolescents also report more stressors compared with children, and neural reward circuitry may be especially vulnerable to stressors during adolescence because of prefrontal cortex remodeling. Using a large sample of male participants in a longitudinal functional magnetic resonance imaging study (N = 157), we evaluated whether cumulative stressful life events between the ages of 15 and 18 were associated with reward-related brain function and problematic alcohol use at age 20 years. Higher cumulative stressful life events during adolescence were associated with decreased response in the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) during monetary reward anticipation and following the receipt of monetary rewards. Stress-related decreases in mPFC response during reward anticipation and following rewarding outcomes were associated with the severity of alcohol dependence. Furthermore, mPFC response mediated the association between stressful life events and later symptoms of alcohol dependence. These data are consistent with neurobiological models of addiction that propose that stressors during adolescence increase risk for problematic alcohol use by disrupting reward circuit function. PMID:24795442

  4. Life stress in adolescence predicts early adult reward-related brain function and alcohol dependence.

    PubMed

    Casement, Melynda D; Shaw, Daniel S; Sitnick, Stephanie L; Musselman, Samuel C; Forbes, Erika E

    2015-03-01

    Stressful life events increase vulnerability to problematic alcohol use, and they may do this by disrupting reward-related neural circuitry. This is particularly relevant for adolescents because alcohol use rises sharply after mid-adolescence and alcohol abuse peaks at age 20. Adolescents also report more stressors compared with children, and neural reward circuitry may be especially vulnerable to stressors during adolescence because of prefrontal cortex remodeling. Using a large sample of male participants in a longitudinal functional magnetic resonance imaging study (N = 157), we evaluated whether cumulative stressful life events between the ages of 15 and 18 were associated with reward-related brain function and problematic alcohol use at age 20 years. Higher cumulative stressful life events during adolescence were associated with decreased response in the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) during monetary reward anticipation and following the receipt of monetary rewards. Stress-related decreases in mPFC response during reward anticipation and following rewarding outcomes were associated with the severity of alcohol dependence. Furthermore, mPFC response mediated the association between stressful life events and later symptoms of alcohol dependence. These data are consistent with neurobiological models of addiction that propose that stressors during adolescence increase risk for problematic alcohol use by disrupting reward circuit function.

  5. Reward-Related Brain Function as a Predictor of Treatment Response in Adolescents with Major Depressive Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Forbes, Erika E.; Olino, Thomas M.; Ryan, Neal D.; Birmaher, Boris; Axelson, David; Moyles, Donna L.; Dahl, Ronald E.

    2009-01-01

    The current study provides preliminary evidence that pre-treatment reward-related brain function in the striatum and medial prefrontal cortex (PFC) could have relevance for predicting both final level and rate of change of clinical characteristics in adolescents with major depressive disorder. Adolescents with depression underwent a functional MRI scan during a monetary reward task, participated in an 8-week open trial of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) or CBT plus selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor, and completed reports of anxiety and depressive symptoms before, during, and after treatment. Clinicians rated adolescents' improvement and severity at the same time points. Growth models were used to examine change in clinical characteristics and its association with brain function. Severity, anxiety symptoms, and depressive symptoms decreased over treatment. Final levels of severity and anxiety symptoms were associated with pre-treatment striatal reactivity, and rate of anxiety symptom reduction was associated with greater striatal reactivity and lower medial PFC reactivity. PMID:20233959

  6. Divergent Effects of Genetic Variation in Endocannabinoid Signaling on Human Threat- and Reward-Related Brain Function

    PubMed Central

    Hariri, Ahmad R.; Gorka, Adam; Hyde, Luke W.; Kimak, Mark; Halder, Indrani; Ducci, Francesca; Ferrell, Robert E.; Goldman, David; Manuck, Stephen B.

    2011-01-01

    Background Fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH) is a key enzyme in regulating endocannabinoid (eCB) signaling. A common single nucleotide polymorphism (C385A) in the human FAAH gene has been associated with increased risk for addiction and obesity. Methods Using imaging genetics in 82 healthy adult volunteers, we examined the effects of FAAH C385A on threat- and reward-related human brain function. Results Carriers of FAAH 385A, associated with reduced enzyme and, possibly, increased eCB signaling, had decreased threat-related amygdala reactivity but increased reward-related ventral striatal reactivity in comparison to C385 homozygotes. Similar divergent effects of FAAH C385A genotype were manifest at the level of brain-behavior relationships. 385A carriers showed decreased correlation between amygdala reactivity and trait anxiety but increased correlation between ventral striatal reactivity and delay discounting, an index of impulsivity. Conclusions Our results parallel pharmacologic and genetic dissection of eCB signaling, are consistent with the psychotropic effects of Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol and highlight specific neural mechanisms through which variability in eCB signaling impacts complex behavioral processes related to risk for addiction and obesity. PMID:19103437

  7. Weekend-weekday advances in sleep timing are associated with altered reward-related brain function in healthy adolescents

    PubMed Central

    Hasler, Brant P.; Dahl, Ronald E.; Holm, Stephanie M.; Jakubcak, Jennifer L.; Ryan, Neal D.; Silk, Jennifer S.; Phillips, Mary L.; Forbes, Erika E.

    2012-01-01

    Sleep timing shifts later during adolescence, thus conflicting with early school start times. This can lead to irregular weekday-weekend schedules and circadian misalignment, which have been linked to depression and substance abuse, consistent with disruptions in the processing of rewards. We tested associations between weekend-weekday shifts in sleep timing and the neural response to monetary reward in healthy adolescents, using actigraphy and a functional magnetic resonance imaging paradigm. Region-of-interest analyses focused on the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) and striatum, both of which are implicated in reward function. Analyses adjusted for pubertal stage, sex, and total sleep time. Greater weekend-weekday advances in midsleep were associated with decreased mPFC and striatal reactivity to reward, which could reflect reduced regulatory response and reward sensitivity. We speculate that circadian misalignment associated with weekend shifts in sleep timing may contribute to reward-related problems such as depression and substance abuse. PMID:22960270

  8. Pharmacological differentiation of opioid receptor antagonists by molecular and functional imaging of target occupancy and food reward-related brain activation in humans.

    PubMed

    Rabiner, E A; Beaver, J; Makwana, A; Searle, G; Long, C; Nathan, P J; Newbould, R D; Howard, J; Miller, S R; Bush, M A; Hill, S; Reiley, R; Passchier, J; Gunn, R N; Matthews, P M; Bullmore, E T

    2011-08-01

    Opioid neurotransmission has a key role in mediating reward-related behaviours. Opioid receptor (OR) antagonists, such as naltrexone (NTX), can attenuate the behaviour-reinforcing effects of primary (food) and secondary rewards. GSK1521498 is a novel OR ligand, which behaves as an inverse agonist at the μ-OR sub-type. In a sample of healthy volunteers, we used [(11)C]-carfentanil positron emission tomography to measure the OR occupancy and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to measure activation of brain reward centres by palatable food stimuli before and after single oral doses of GSK1521498 (range, 0.4-100 mg) or NTX (range, 2-50 mg). GSK1521498 had high affinity for human brain ORs (GSK1521498 effective concentration 50 = 7.10 ng ml(-1)) and there was a direct relationship between receptor occupancy (RO) and plasma concentrations of GSK1521498. However, for both NTX and its principal active metabolite in humans, 6-β-NTX, this relationship was indirect. GSK1521498, but not NTX, significantly attenuated the fMRI activation of the amygdala by a palatable food stimulus. We thus have shown how the pharmacological properties of OR antagonists can be characterised directly in humans by a novel integration of molecular and functional neuroimaging techniques. GSK1521498 was differentiated from NTX in terms of its pharmacokinetics, target affinity, plasma concentration-RO relationships and pharmacodynamic effects on food reward processing in the brain. Pharmacological differentiation of these molecules suggests that they may have different therapeutic profiles for treatment of overeating and other disorders of compulsive consumption.

  9. Pharmacological differentiation of opioid receptor antagonists by molecular and functional imaging of target occupancy and food reward-related brain activation in humans

    PubMed Central

    Rabiner, E A; Beaver, J; Makwana, A; Searle, G; Long, C; Nathan, P J; Newbould, R D; Howard, J; Miller, S R; Bush, M A; Hill, S; Reiley, R; Passchier, J; Gunn, R N; Matthews, P M; Bullmore, E T

    2011-01-01

    Opioid neurotransmission has a key role in mediating reward-related behaviours. Opioid receptor (OR) antagonists, such as naltrexone (NTX), can attenuate the behaviour-reinforcing effects of primary (food) and secondary rewards. GSK1521498 is a novel OR ligand, which behaves as an inverse agonist at the μ-OR sub-type. In a sample of healthy volunteers, we used [11C]-carfentanil positron emission tomography to measure the OR occupancy and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to measure activation of brain reward centres by palatable food stimuli before and after single oral doses of GSK1521498 (range, 0.4–100 mg) or NTX (range, 2–50 mg). GSK1521498 had high affinity for human brain ORs (GSK1521498 effective concentration 50=7.10 ng ml−1) and there was a direct relationship between receptor occupancy (RO) and plasma concentrations of GSK1521498. However, for both NTX and its principal active metabolite in humans, 6-β-NTX, this relationship was indirect. GSK1521498, but not NTX, significantly attenuated the fMRI activation of the amygdala by a palatable food stimulus. We thus have shown how the pharmacological properties of OR antagonists can be characterised directly in humans by a novel integration of molecular and functional neuroimaging techniques. GSK1521498 was differentiated from NTX in terms of its pharmacokinetics, target affinity, plasma concentration–RO relationships and pharmacodynamic effects on food reward processing in the brain. Pharmacological differentiation of these molecules suggests that they may have different therapeutic profiles for treatment of overeating and other disorders of compulsive consumption. PMID:21502953

  10. GLP-1 receptor activation modulates appetite- and reward-related brain areas in humans.

    PubMed

    van Bloemendaal, Liselotte; IJzerman, Richard G; Ten Kulve, Jennifer S; Barkhof, Frederik; Konrad, Robert J; Drent, Madeleine L; Veltman, Dick J; Diamant, Michaela

    2014-12-01

    Gut-derived hormones, such as GLP-1, have been proposed to relay information to the brain to regulate appetite. GLP-1 receptor agonists, currently used for the treatment of type 2 diabetes (T2DM), improve glycemic control and stimulate satiety, leading to decreases in food intake and body weight. We hypothesized that food intake reduction after GLP-1 receptor activation is mediated through appetite- and reward-related brain areas. Obese T2DM patients and normoglycemic obese and lean individuals (n = 48) were studied in a randomized, crossover, placebo-controlled trial. Using functional MRI, we determined the acute effects of intravenous administration of the GLP-1 receptor agonist exenatide, with or without prior GLP-1 receptor blockade using exendin 9-39, on brain responses to food pictures during a somatostatin pancreatic-pituitary clamp. Obese T2DM patients and normoglycemic obese versus lean subjects showed increased brain responses to food pictures in appetite- and reward-related brain regions (insula and amygdala). Exenatide versus placebo decreased food intake and food-related brain responses in T2DM patients and obese subjects (in insula, amygdala, putamen, and orbitofrontal cortex). These effects were largely blocked by prior GLP-1 receptor blockade using exendin 9-39. Our findings provide novel insights into the mechanisms by which GLP-1 regulates food intake and how GLP-1 receptor agonists cause weight loss.

  11. Cumulative stress in childhood is associated with blunted reward-related brain activity in adulthood.

    PubMed

    Hanson, Jamie L; Albert, Dustin; Iselin, Anne-Marie R; Carré, Justin M; Dodge, Kenneth A; Hariri, Ahmad R

    2016-03-01

    Early life stress (ELS) is strongly associated with negative outcomes in adulthood, including reduced motivation and increased negative mood. The mechanisms mediating these relations, however, are poorly understood. We examined the relation between exposure to ELS and reward-related brain activity, which is known to predict motivation and mood, at age 26, in a sample followed since kindergarten with annual assessments. Using functional neuroimaging, we assayed individual differences in the activity of the ventral striatum (VS) during the processing of monetary rewards associated with a simple card-guessing task, in a sample of 72 male participants. We examined associations between a cumulative measure of ELS exposure and VS activity in adulthood. We found that greater levels of cumulative stress during childhood and adolescence predicted lower reward-related VS activity in adulthood. Extending this general developmental pattern, we found that exposure to stress early in development (between kindergarten and grade 3) was significantly associated with variability in adult VS activity. Our results provide an important demonstration that cumulative life stress, especially during this childhood period, is associated with blunted reward-related VS activity in adulthood. These differences suggest neurobiological pathways through which a history of ELS may contribute to reduced motivation and increased negative mood. © The Author (2015). Published by Oxford University Press. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  12. Repeated electrical stimulation of reward-related brain regions affects cocaine but not "natural" reinforcement.

    PubMed

    Levy, Dino; Shabat-Simon, Maytal; Shalev, Uri; Barnea-Ygael, Noam; Cooper, Ayelet; Zangen, Abraham

    2007-12-19

    Drug addiction is associated with long-lasting neuronal adaptations including alterations in dopamine and glutamate receptors in the brain reward system. Treatment strategies for cocaine addiction and especially the prevention of craving and relapse are limited, and their effectiveness is still questionable. We hypothesized that repeated stimulation of the brain reward system can induce localized neuronal adaptations that may either potentiate or reduce addictive behaviors. The present study was designed to test how repeated interference with the brain reward system using localized electrical stimulation of the medial forebrain bundle at the lateral hypothalamus (LH) or the prefrontal cortex (PFC) affects cocaine addiction-associated behaviors and some of the neuronal adaptations induced by repeated exposure to cocaine. Repeated high-frequency stimulation in either site influenced cocaine, but not sucrose reward-related behaviors. Stimulation of the LH reduced cue-induced seeking behavior, whereas stimulation of the PFC reduced both cocaine-seeking behavior and the motivation for its consumption. The behavioral findings were accompanied by glutamate receptor subtype alterations in the nucleus accumbens and the ventral tegmental area, both key structures of the reward system. It is therefore suggested that repeated electrical stimulation of the PFC can become a novel strategy for treating addiction.

  13. Functional states of rat cortical circuits during the unpredictable availability of a reward-related cue

    PubMed Central

    Fernández-Lamo, Iván; Sánchez-Campusano, Raudel; Gruart, Agnès; Delgado-García M, José M.

    2016-01-01

    Proper performance of acquired abilities can be disturbed by the unexpected occurrence of external changes. Rats trained with an operant conditioning task (to press a lever in order to obtain a food pellet) using a fixed-ratio (1:1) schedule were subsequently placed in a Skinner box in which the lever could be removed randomly. Field postsynaptic potentials (fPSPs) were chronically evoked in perforant pathway-hippocampal CA1 (PP-CA1), CA1-subiculum (CA1-SUB), CA1-medial prefrontal cortex (CA1-mPFC), mPFC-nucleus accumbens (mPFC-NAc), and mPFC-basolateral amygdala (mPFC-BLA) synapses during lever IN and lever OUT situations. While lever presses were accompanied by a significant increase in fPSP slopes at the five synapses, the unpredictable absence of the lever were accompanied by decreased fPSP slopes in all, except PP-CA1 synapses. Spectral analysis of local field potentials (LFPs) recorded when the animal approached the corresponding area in the lever OUT situation presented lower spectral powers than during lever IN occasions for all recording sites, apart from CA1. Thus, the unpredictable availability of a reward-related cue modified the activity of cortical and subcortical areas related with the acquisition of operant learning tasks, suggesting an immediate functional reorganization of these neural circuits to address the changed situation and to modify ongoing behaviors accordingly. PMID:27869181

  14. Functional states of rat cortical circuits during the unpredictable availability of a reward-related cue.

    PubMed

    Fernández-Lamo, Iván; Sánchez-Campusano, Raudel; Gruart, Agnès; Delgado-García, José M

    2016-11-21

    Proper performance of acquired abilities can be disturbed by the unexpected occurrence of external changes. Rats trained with an operant conditioning task (to press a lever in order to obtain a food pellet) using a fixed-ratio (1:1) schedule were subsequently placed in a Skinner box in which the lever could be removed randomly. Field postsynaptic potentials (fPSPs) were chronically evoked in perforant pathway-hippocampal CA1 (PP-CA1), CA1-subiculum (CA1-SUB), CA1-medial prefrontal cortex (CA1-mPFC), mPFC-nucleus accumbens (mPFC-NAc), and mPFC-basolateral amygdala (mPFC-BLA) synapses during lever IN and lever OUT situations. While lever presses were accompanied by a significant increase in fPSP slopes at the five synapses, the unpredictable absence of the lever were accompanied by decreased fPSP slopes in all, except PP-CA1 synapses. Spectral analysis of local field potentials (LFPs) recorded when the animal approached the corresponding area in the lever OUT situation presented lower spectral powers than during lever IN occasions for all recording sites, apart from CA1. Thus, the unpredictable availability of a reward-related cue modified the activity of cortical and subcortical areas related with the acquisition of operant learning tasks, suggesting an immediate functional reorganization of these neural circuits to address the changed situation and to modify ongoing behaviors accordingly.

  15. Relation of Dietary Restraint Scores to Activation of Reward-Related Brain Regions in Response to Food Intake, Anticipated Intake, and Food Pictures

    PubMed Central

    Burger, Kyle S.; Stice, Eric

    2010-01-01

    Prospective studies indicate that individuals with elevated dietary restraint scores are at increased risk for future bulimic symptom onset, suggesting that these individuals may show hyper-responsivity of reward regions to food and food cues. Thus, we used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to examine the relation of dietary restraint scores to activation of reward-related brain regions in response to receipt and anticipated receipt of chocolate milkshake and exposure to pictures of appetizing foods in 39 female adolescents (mean age = 15.5 ± 0.94). Dietary restraint scores were positively correlated with activation in the right orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) and bilateral dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) in response to milkshake receipt. However, dietary restraint scores did not correlate with activation in response to anticipated milkshake receipt or exposure to food pictures. Results indicate that individuals who report high dietary restraint have a hyper-responsivity in reward-related brain regions when food intake is occurring, which may increase risk for overeating and binge eating. PMID:21147234

  16. Induction of deltaFosB in reward-related brain structures after chronic stress.

    PubMed

    Perrotti, Linda I; Hadeishi, Yuki; Ulery, Paula G; Barrot, Michel; Monteggia, Lisa; Duman, Ronald S; Nestler, Eric J

    2004-11-24

    Acute and chronic stress differentially regulate immediate-early gene (IEG) expression in the brain. Although acute stress induces c-Fos and FosB, repeated exposure to stress desensitizes the c-Fos response, but FosB-like immunoreactivity remains high. Several other treatments differentially regulate IEG expression in a similar manner after acute versus chronic exposure. The form of FosB that persists after these chronic treatments has been identified as DeltaFosB, a splice variant of the fosB gene. This study was designed to determine whether the FosB form induced after chronic stress is also DeltaFosB and to map the brain regions and identify the cell populations that exhibit this effect. Western blotting, using an antibody that recognizes all Fos family members, revealed that acute restraint stress caused robust induction of c-Fos and full-length FosB, as well as a small induction of DeltaFosB, in the frontal cortex (fCTX) and nucleus accumbens (NAc). The induction of c-Fos (and to some extent full-length FosB) was desensitized after 10 d of restraint stress, at which point levels of DeltaFosB were high. A similar pattern was observed after chronic unpredictable stress. By use of immunohistochemistry, we found that chronic restraint stress induced DeltaFosB expression predominantly in the fCTX, NAc, and basolateral amygdala, with lower levels of induction seen elsewhere. These findings establish that chronic stress induces DeltaFosB in several discrete regions of the brain. Such induction could contribute to the long-term effects of stress on the brain.

  17. Brain mechanisms for perceptual and reward-related decision-making.

    PubMed

    Deco, Gustavo; Rolls, Edmund T; Albantakis, Larissa; Romo, Ranulfo

    2013-04-01

    Phenomenological models of decision-making, including the drift-diffusion and race models, are compared with mechanistic, biologically plausible models, such as integrate-and-fire attractor neuronal network models. The attractor network models show how decision confidence is an emergent property; and make testable predictions about the neural processes (including neuronal activity and fMRI signals) involved in decision-making which indicate that the medial prefrontal cortex is involved in reward value-based decision-making. Synaptic facilitation in these models can help to account for sequential vibrotactile decision-making, and for how postponed decision-related responses are made. The randomness in the neuronal spiking-related noise that makes the decision-making probabilistic is shown to be increased by the graded firing rate representations found in the brain, to be decreased by the diluted connectivity, and still to be significant in biologically large networks with thousands of synapses onto each neuron. The stability of these systems is shown to be influenced in different ways by glutamatergic and GABAergic efficacy, leading to a new field of dynamical neuropsychiatry with applications to understanding schizophrenia and obsessive-compulsive disorder. The noise in these systems is shown to be advantageous, and to apply to similar attractor networks involved in short-term memory, long-term memory, attention, and associative thought processes. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Higher resting-state activity in reward-related brain circuits in obese versus normal-weight females independent of food intake

    PubMed Central

    Hogenkamp, P S; Zhou, W; Dahlberg, L S; Stark, J; Larsen, A L; Olivo, G; Wiemerslage, L; Larsson, E-M; Sundbom, M; Benedict, C; Schiöth, H B

    2016-01-01

    Background: In response to food cues, obese vs normal-weight individuals show greater activation in brain regions involved in the regulation of food intake under both fasted and sated conditions. Putative effects of obesity on task-independent low-frequency blood-oxygenation-level-dependent signals—that is, resting-state brain activity—in the context of food intake are, however, less well studied. Objective: To compare eyes closed, whole-brain low-frequency BOLD signals between severely obese and normal-weight females, as assessed by functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Methods: Fractional amplitude of low-frequency fluctuations were measured in the morning following an overnight fast in 17 obese (age: 39±11 years, body mass index (BMI): 42.3±4.8 kg m−2) and 12 normal-weight females (age: 36±12 years, BMI: 22.7±1.8 kg m−2), both before and 30 min after consumption of a standardized meal (~260 kcal). Results: Compared with normal-weight controls, obese females had increased low-frequency activity in clusters located in the putamen, claustrum and insula (P<0.05). This group difference was not altered by food intake. Self-reported hunger dropped and plasma glucose concentrations increased after food intake (P<0.05); however, these changes did not differ between the BMI groups. Conclusion: Reward-related brain regions are more active under resting-state conditions in obese than in normal-weight females. This difference was independent of food intake under the experimental settings applied in the current study. Future studies involving males and females, as well as utilizing repeated post-prandial resting-state fMRI scans and various types of meals are needed to further investigate how food intake alters resting-state brain activity in obese humans. PMID:27349694

  19. 5-HT receptors and reward-related behaviour: a review.

    PubMed

    Hayes, Dave J; Greenshaw, Andrew J

    2011-05-01

    The brain's serotonin (5-HT) system is key in the regulation of reward-related behaviours, from eating and drinking to sexual activity. The complexity of studying this system is due, in part, to the fact that 5-HT acts at many receptor subtypes throughout the brain. The recent development of drugs with greater selectivity for individual receptor subtypes has allowed for rapid advancements in our understanding of this system. Use of these drugs in combination with animal models entailing selective reward measures (i.e. intracranial self-stimulation, drug self-administration, conditioned place preference) have resulted in a greater understanding of the pharmacology of reward-related processing and behaviour (particularly regarding drugs of abuse). The putative roles of each 5-HT receptor subtype in the pharmacology of reward are outlined and discussed here. It is concluded that the actions of 5-HT in reward are receptor subtype-dependent (and thus should not be generalized) and that all studied subtypes appear to have a unique profile which is determined by content (e.g. receptor function, localization - both throughout the brain and within the synapse) and context (e.g. type of behavioural paradigm, type of drug). Given evidence of altered reward-related processing and serotonergic function in numerous neuropsychiatric disorders, such as depression, schizophrenia, and addiction, a clearer understanding of the role of 5-HT receptor subtypes in this context may lead to improved drug development and therapeutic approaches.

  20. Chronic nicotine activates stress/reward-related brain regions and facilitates the transition to compulsive alcohol drinking.

    PubMed

    Leão, Rodrigo M; Cruz, Fábio C; Vendruscolo, Leandro F; de Guglielmo, Giordano; Logrip, Marian L; Planeta, Cleopatra S; Hope, Bruce T; Koob, George F; George, Olivier

    2015-04-15

    Alcohol and nicotine are the two most co-abused drugs in the world. Previous studies have shown that nicotine can increase alcohol drinking in nondependent rats, yet it is unknown whether nicotine facilitates the transition to alcohol dependence. We tested the hypothesis that chronic nicotine will speed up the escalation of alcohol drinking in rats and that this effect will be accompanied by activation of sparsely distributed neurons (neuronal ensembles) throughout the brain that are specifically recruited by the combination of nicotine and alcohol. Rats were trained to respond for alcohol and made dependent using chronic, intermittent exposure to alcohol vapor, while receiving daily nicotine (0.8 mg/kg) injections. Identification of neuronal ensembles was performed after the last operant session, using immunohistochemistry. Nicotine produced an early escalation of alcohol drinking associated with compulsive alcohol drinking in dependent, but not in nondependent rats (air exposed), as measured by increased progressive-ratio responding and increased responding despite adverse consequences. The combination of nicotine and alcohol produced the recruitment of discrete and phenotype-specific neuronal ensembles (∼4-13% of total neuronal population) in the nucleus accumbens core, dorsomedial prefrontal cortex, central nucleus of the amygdala, bed nucleus of stria terminalis, and posterior ventral tegmental area. Blockade of nicotinic receptors using mecamylamine (1 mg/kg) prevented both the behavioral and neuronal effects of nicotine in dependent rats. These results demonstrate that nicotine and activation of nicotinic receptors are critical factors in the development of alcohol dependence through the dysregulation of a set of interconnected neuronal ensembles throughout the brain.

  1. Chronic Nicotine Activates Stress/Reward-Related Brain Regions and Facilitates the Transition to Compulsive Alcohol Drinking

    PubMed Central

    Cruz, Fábio C.; Vendruscolo, Leandro F.; de Guglielmo, Giordano; Logrip, Marian L.; Planeta, Cleopatra S.; Hope, Bruce T.; Koob, George F.

    2015-01-01

    Alcohol and nicotine are the two most co-abused drugs in the world. Previous studies have shown that nicotine can increase alcohol drinking in nondependent rats, yet it is unknown whether nicotine facilitates the transition to alcohol dependence. We tested the hypothesis that chronic nicotine will speed up the escalation of alcohol drinking in rats and that this effect will be accompanied by activation of sparsely distributed neurons (neuronal ensembles) throughout the brain that are specifically recruited by the combination of nicotine and alcohol. Rats were trained to respond for alcohol and made dependent using chronic, intermittent exposure to alcohol vapor, while receiving daily nicotine (0.8 mg/kg) injections. Identification of neuronal ensembles was performed after the last operant session, using immunohistochemistry. Nicotine produced an early escalation of alcohol drinking associated with compulsive alcohol drinking in dependent, but not in nondependent rats (air exposed), as measured by increased progressive-ratio responding and increased responding despite adverse consequences. The combination of nicotine and alcohol produced the recruitment of discrete and phenotype-specific neuronal ensembles (∼4–13% of total neuronal population) in the nucleus accumbens core, dorsomedial prefrontal cortex, central nucleus of the amygdala, bed nucleus of stria terminalis, and posterior ventral tegmental area. Blockade of nicotinic receptors using mecamylamine (1 mg/kg) prevented both the behavioral and neuronal effects of nicotine in dependent rats. These results demonstrate that nicotine and activation of nicotinic receptors are critical factors in the development of alcohol dependence through the dysregulation of a set of interconnected neuronal ensembles throughout the brain. PMID:25878294

  2. Menthol Enhances Nicotine Reward-Related Behavior by Potentiating Nicotine-Induced Changes in nAChR Function, nAChR Upregulation, and DA Neuron Excitability.

    PubMed

    Henderson, Brandon J; Wall, Teagan R; Henley, Beverley M; Kim, Charlene H; McKinney, Sheri; Lester, Henry A

    2017-04-12

    Understanding why the quit rate among smokers of menthol cigarettes is lower than non-menthol smokers requires identifying the neurons that are altered by nicotine, menthol, and acetylcholine. Dopaminergic (DA) neurons in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) mediate the positive reinforcing effects of nicotine. Using mouse models, we show that menthol enhances nicotine-induced changes in nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) expressed on midbrain DA neurons. Menthol plus nicotine upregulates nAChR number and function on midbrain DA neurons more than nicotine alone. Menthol also enhances nicotine-induced changes in DA neuron excitability. In a conditioned place preference (CPP) assay, we observed that menthol plus nicotine produces greater reward-related behavior than nicotine alone. Our results connect changes in midbrain DA neurons to menthol-induced enhancements of nicotine reward-related behavior and may help explain how smokers of menthol cigarettes exhibit reduced cessation rates.Neuropsychopharmacology accepted article preview online, 12 April 2017. doi:10.1038/npp.2017.72.

  3. Neural mechanisms underlying the reward-related enhancement of motivation when remembering episodic memories with high difficulty.

    PubMed

    Shigemune, Yayoi; Tsukiura, Takashi; Nouchi, Rui; Kambara, Toshimune; Kawashima, Ryuta

    2017-04-04

    The motivation to receive rewards enhances episodic memories, and the motivation is modulated by task difficulty. In episodic retrieval, however, functional neuroimaging evidence regarding the motivation that mediates interactions between reward and task difficulty is scarce. The present fMRI study investigated this issue. During encoding performed without fMRI, participants encoded Japanese words using either deep or shallow strategies, which led to variation in difficulty level during subsequent retrieval. During retrieval with fMRI, participants recognized the target words in either high or low monetary reward conditions. In the behavioral results, a reward-related enhancement of memory was found only when the memory retrieval was difficult, and the rewarding effect on subjective motivation was greater in the retrieval of memories with high difficulty than those with low difficulty. The fMRI data showed that reward-related increases in the activation of the substantia nigra/ventral tegmental area (SN/VTA), medial temporal lobe (MTL), dorsomedial prefrontal cortex (dmPFC), and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (dlPFC) were greater during the retrieval of memories with high difficulty than those with low difficulty. Furthermore, reward-related enhancement of functional connectivity between the SN/VTA and MTL and between the SN/VTA and dmPFC during the retrieval of memories with high difficulty was significantly correlated with reward-related increases of retrieval accuracy and subjective motivation. The reward-related enhancement of episodic retrieval and retrieval-related motivation could be most effective when the level of retrieval difficulty is optimized. Such reward-related enhancement of memory and motivation could be modulated by a network including the reward-related SN/VTA, motivation-related dmPFC, and memory-related MTL. Hum Brain Mapp, 2017. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  4. Cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART) peptide immunoreactivity in feeding- and reward-related brain areas of young OLETF rats

    PubMed Central

    Armbruszt, Simon; Abraham, Hajnalka; Figler, Maria; Kozicz, Tamas; Hajnal, Andras

    2013-01-01

    Cocaine- and amphetamine regulated transcript (CART) peptide is expressed in brain areas involved in the control of appetite, drug reward and homeostatic regulation and it has an overall anorexigenic effect. Recently, we have shown that CART peptide immunoreactivity was significantly reduced in the rostral part of the nucleus accumbens and in the rostro-medial part of the nucleus of the solitary tract in adult CCK-1 receptor deficient obese diabetic Otsuka Long Evans Tokushima Fatty (OLETF) rats compared to Long Evans Tokushima Otsuka (LETO) lean controls. It is not clear, however, whether altered CART expression is caused primarily by the deficiency in CCK-1 signaling or whether is related to the obese and diabetic phenotype of the OLETF strain which develops at a later age. Therefore, in the present study, CART-immunoreaction in feeding-related areas of the brain was compared in young, age-matched (6-7 weeks old) non-obese, non-diabetic OLETF rats and in LETO controls. We found that, young, non-diabetic OLETF rats revealed unaltered distribution of CART-peptide expressing neurons and axons throughout the brain when compared to age-matched LETO rats. In contrast to previous results observed in the obese diabetic adult rats, intensity of CART immunoreaction did not differ in the areas related to control of food-intake and reward in the young OLETFs compared to young LETO rats. Our findings suggest that factors secondary to obesity and/or diabetes rather than impaired CCK-1 receptor signaling may contribute to altered CART expression in the OLETF strain. PMID:23545074

  5. Cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART) peptide immunoreactivity in feeding- and reward-related brain areas of young OLETF rats.

    PubMed

    Armbruszt, Simon; Abraham, Hajnalka; Figler, Maria; Kozicz, Tamas; Hajnal, Andras

    2013-05-01

    Cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART) peptide is expressed in brain areas involved in the control of appetite, drug reward and homeostatic regulation and it has an overall anorexigenic effect. Recently, we have shown that CART peptide immunoreactivity was significantly reduced in the rostral part of the nucleus accumbens and in the rostro-medial part of the nucleus of the solitary tract in adult CCK-1 receptor deficient obese diabetic Otsuka Long Evans Tokushima Fatty (OLETF) rats compared to Long Evans Tokushima Otsuka (LETO) lean controls. It is not clear, however, whether altered CART expression is caused primarily by the deficiency in CCK-1 signaling or whether is related to the obese and diabetic phenotype of the OLETF strain which develops at a later age. Therefore, in the present study, CART-immunoreaction in feeding-related areas of the brain was compared in young, age-matched (6-7 weeks old) non-obese, non-diabetic OLETF rats and in LETO controls. We found that, young, non-diabetic OLETF rats revealed unaltered distribution of CART-peptide expressing neurons and axons throughout the brain when compared to age-matched LETO rats. In contrast to previous results observed in the obese diabetic adult rats, intensity of CART immunoreaction did not differ in the areas related to control of food-intake and reward in the young OLETFs compared to young LETO rats. Our findings suggest that factors secondary to obesity and/or diabetes rather than impaired CCK-1 receptor signaling may contribute to altered CART expression in the OLETF strain.

  6. Reward-Related Decision-Making in Pediatric Major Depressive Disorder: An fMRI Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Forbes, Erika E.; Christopher May, J.; Siegle, Greg J.; Ladouceur, Cecile D.; Ryan, Neal D.; Carter, Cameron S.; Birmaher, Boris; Axelson, David A.; Dahl, Ronald E.

    2006-01-01

    Background: Although reward processing is considered an important part of affective functioning, few studies have investigated reward-related decisions or responses in young people with affective disorders. Depression is postulated to involve decreased activity in reward-related affective systems. Methods: Using functional magnetic resonance…

  7. Reward-Related Decision-Making in Pediatric Major Depressive Disorder: An fMRI Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Forbes, Erika E.; Christopher May, J.; Siegle, Greg J.; Ladouceur, Cecile D.; Ryan, Neal D.; Carter, Cameron S.; Birmaher, Boris; Axelson, David A.; Dahl, Ronald E.

    2006-01-01

    Background: Although reward processing is considered an important part of affective functioning, few studies have investigated reward-related decisions or responses in young people with affective disorders. Depression is postulated to involve decreased activity in reward-related affective systems. Methods: Using functional magnetic resonance…

  8. Operant ethanol self-administration increases extracellular-signal regulated protein kinase (ERK) phosphorylation in reward-related brain regions: selective regulation of positive reinforcement in the prefrontal cortex of C57BL/6J mice

    PubMed Central

    Faccidomo, Sara; Salling, Michael C; Galunas, Christina; Hodge, Clyde W

    2015-01-01

    Rationale Extracellular-signal regulated protein kinase (ERK1/2) is activated by ethanol in reward-related brain regions. Accordingly, systemic inhibition of ERK1/2 potentiates ethanol reinforcement. However, the brain region(s) that mediate this effect are unknown. Objective To pharmacologically inhibit ERK1/2 in the medial prefrontal cortex (PFC), nucleus accumbens (NAC) and amygdala (AMY) prior to ethanol or sucrose self-administration, and evaluate effects of operant ethanol self-administration on ERK1/2 phosphorylation (pERK1/2). Methods Male C57BL/6J mice were trained to lever press on a fixed-ratio-4 schedule of 9% ethanol+2% sucrose (ethanol) or 2% sucrose (sucrose) reinforcement. Mice were sacrificed immediately after the 30th self-administration session and pERK1/2 immunoreactivity was quantified in targeted brain regions. Additional groups of mice were injected with SL 327 (0–1.7 μg/side) in PFC, NAC or AMY prior to self-administration. Results pERK1/2 immunoreactivity was significantly increased by operant ethanol (g/kg=1.21 g/kg; BAC=54.9 mg/dl) in the PFC, NAC (core and shell), and AMY (central nucleus) as compared to sucrose. Microinjection of SL 327 (1.7 μg) into the PFC selectively increased ethanol self-administration. Intra-NAC injection of SL 327 had no effect on ethanol- but suppressed sucrose-reinforced responding. Intra-AMY microinjection of SL 327 had no effect on either ethanol- or sucrose-reinforced responding. Locomotor activity was unaffected under all conditions. Conclusions Operant ethanol self-administration increases pERK1/2 activation in the PFC, NAC and AMY. However, ERK1/2 activity only in the PFC mechanistically regulates ethanol self-administration. These data suggest that ethanol-induced activation of ERK1/2 in the PFC is a critical pharmacological effect that mediates the reinforcing properties of the drug. PMID:26123321

  9. Circadian Mechanisms Underlying Reward-Related Neurophysiology and Synaptic Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Parekh, Puja K.; McClung, Colleen A.

    2016-01-01

    Evidence from clinical and preclinical research provides an undeniable link between disruptions in the circadian clock and the development of psychiatric diseases, including mood and substance abuse disorders. The molecular clock, which controls daily patterns of physiological and behavioral activity in living organisms, when desynchronized, may exacerbate or precipitate symptoms of psychiatric illness. One of the outstanding questions remaining in this field is that of cause and effect in the relationship between circadian rhythm disruption and psychiatric disease. Focus has recently turned to uncovering the role of circadian proteins beyond the maintenance of homeostatic systems and outside of the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN), the master pacemaker region of the brain. In this regard, several groups, including our own, have sought to understand how circadian proteins regulate mechanisms of synaptic plasticity and neurotransmitter signaling in mesocorticolimbic brain regions, which are known to be critically involved in reward processing and mood. This regulation can come in the form of direct transcriptional control of genes central to mood and reward, including those associated with dopaminergic activity in the midbrain. It can also be seen at the circuit level through indirect connections of mesocorticolimbic regions with the SCN. Circadian misalignment paradigms as well as genetic models of circadian disruption have helped to elucidate some of the complex interactions between these systems and neural activity influencing behavior. In this review, we explore findings that link circadian protein function with synaptic adaptations underlying plasticity as it may contribute to the development of mood disorders and addiction. In light of recent advances in technology and sophisticated methods for molecular and circuit-level interrogation, we propose future directions aimed at teasing apart mechanisms through which the circadian system modulates mood and reward-related

  10. Brain imaging and brain function

    SciTech Connect

    Sokoloff, L.

    1985-01-01

    This book is a survey of the applications of imaging studies of regional cerebral blood flow and metabolism to the investigation of neurological and psychiatric disorders. Contributors review imaging techniques and strategies for measuring regional cerebral blood flow and metabolism, for mapping functional neural systems, and for imaging normal brain functions. They then examine the applications of brain imaging techniques to the study of such neurological and psychiatric disorders as: cerebral ischemia; convulsive disorders; cerebral tumors; Huntington's disease; Alzheimer's disease; depression and other mood disorders. A state-of-the-art report on magnetic resonance imaging of the brain and central nervous system rounds out the book's coverage.

  11. Reward-related activity in the human motor cortex

    PubMed Central

    Kapogiannis, Dimitrios; Campion, Paul; Grafman, Jordan; Wassermann, Eric M.

    2017-01-01

    The human primary motor cortex (M1) participates in motor learning and response selection, functions that rely on feedback on the success of behavior (i.e. reward). To investigate the possibility that behavioral contingencies alter M1 activity in humans, we tested intracortical inhibition with single and paired (subthreshold/suprathreshold) transcranial magnetic stimulation during a slot machine simulation that delivered variable money rewards for three-way matches and required no movement. A two-way match before the third barrel had stopped (increased reward expectation) was associated with more paired-pulse inhibition than no match. Receiving a large reward on the preceding trial augmented this effect. A control task that manipulated attention to the same stimuli produced no changes in excitability. The origin of this reward-related activity is not clear, although dopaminergic ventral tegmental area neurons project to M1, where they are thought to inhibit output neurons and could be the source of the finding. Transcranial magnetic stimulation of M1 may be useful as a quantitative measure of reward-related activity. PMID:18371077

  12. FNDC5/irisin, a molecular target for boosting reward-related learning and motivation.

    PubMed

    Zsuga, Judit; Tajti, Gabor; Papp, Csaba; Juhasz, Bela; Gesztelyi, Rudolf

    2016-05-01

    Interventions focusing on the prevention and treatment of chronic non-communicable diseases are on rise. In the current article, we propose that dysfunction of the mesocortico-limbic reward system contributes to the emergence of the WHO-identified risk behaviors (tobacco use, unhealthy diet, physical inactivity and harmful use of alcohol), behaviors that underlie the evolution of major non-communicable diseases (e.g. cardiovascular diseases, cancer, diabetes and chronic respiratory diseases). Given that dopaminergic neurons of the mesocortico-limbic system are tightly associated with reward-related processes and motivation, their dysfunction may fundamentally influence behavior. While nicotine and alcohol alter dopamine neuron function by influencing some receptors, mesocortico-limbic system dysfunction was associated with elevation of metabolic set-point leading to hedonic over-eating. Although there is some empirical evidence, precise molecular mechanism for linking physical inactivity and mesocortico-limbic dysfunction per se seems to be missing; identification of which may contribute to higher success rates for interventions targeting lifestyle changes pertaining to physical activity. In the current article, we compile evidence in support of a link between exercise and the mesocortico-limbic system by elucidating interactions on the axis of muscle - irisin - brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) - and dopaminergic function of the midbrain. Irisin is a contraction-regulated myokine formed primarily in skeletal muscle but also in the brain. Irisin stirred considerable interest, when its ability to induce browning of white adipose tissue parallel to increasing thermogenesis was discovered. Furthermore, it may also play a role in the regulation of behavior given it readily enters the central nervous system, where it induces BDNF expression in several brain areas linked to reward processing, e.g. the ventral tegmental area and the hippocampus. BDNF is a

  13. Association between reward-related activation in the ventral striatum and trait reward sensitivity is moderated by dopamine transporter genotype.

    PubMed

    Hahn, Tim; Heinzel, Sebastian; Dresler, Thomas; Plichta, Michael M; Renner, Tobias J; Markulin, Falko; Jakob, Peter M; Lesch, Klaus-Peter; Fallgatter, Andreas J

    2011-10-01

    The impact of individual differences on human reward processing has been a focus of research in recent years, particularly, as they are associated with a variety of neuropsychiatric diseases including addiction and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Studies exploring the neural basis of individual differences in reward sensitivity have consistently implicated the ventral striatum (VS) as a core component of the human reward system. However, the mechanisms of dopaminergic neurotransmission underlying ventral striatal activation as well as trait reward sensitivity remain speculative. We addressed this issue by investigating the triadic interplay between VS reactivity during reward anticipation using functional magnetic resonance imaging, trait reward sensitivity, and dopamine (DA) transporter genotype (40-bp 3'VNTR of DAT, SLC6A3) affecting synaptic DA neurotransmission. Our results show that DAT variation moderates the association between VS-reactivity and trait reward sensitivity. Specifically, homozygote carriers of the DAT 10-repeat allele exhibit a strong positive correlation between reward sensitivity and reward-related VS activity whereas this relationship is absent in the DAT 9-repeat allele carriers. We discuss the possibility that this moderation of VS-trait relation might arise from DAT-dependent differences in DA availability affecting synaptic plasticity within the VS. Generally, studying the impact of dopaminergic gene variations on the relation between reward-related brain activity and trait reward sensitivity might facilitate the investigation of complex mechanisms underlying disorders linked to dysregulation of DA neurotransmission.

  14. The dopamine transporter haplotype and reward-related striatal responses in adult ADHD.

    PubMed

    Hoogman, Martine; Onnink, Marten; Cools, Roshan; Aarts, Esther; Kan, Cornelis; Arias Vasquez, Alejandro; Buitelaar, Jan; Franke, Barbara

    2013-06-01

    Attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a highly heritable disorder and several genes increasing disease risk have been identified. The dopamine transporter gene, SLC6A3/DAT1, has been studied most extensively in ADHD research. Interestingly, a different haplotype of this gene (formed by genetic variants in the 3' untranslated region and intron 8) is associated with childhood ADHD (haplotype 10-6) and adult ADHD (haplotype 9-6). The expression of DAT1 is highest in striatal regions in the brain. This part of the brain is of interest to ADHD because of its role in reward processing is altered in ADHD patients; ADHD patients display decreased striatal activation during reward processing. To better understand how the DAT1 gene exerts effects on ADHD, we studied the effect of this gene on reward-related brain functioning in the area of its highest expression in the brain, the striatum, using functional magnetic resonance imaging. In doing so, we tried to resolve inconsistencies observed in previous studies of healthy individuals and ADHD-affected children. In a sample of 87 adult ADHD patients and 77 healthy comparison subjects, we confirmed the association of the 9-6 haplotype with adult ADHD. Striatal hypoactivation during the reward anticipation phase of a monetary incentive delay task in ADHD patients was again shown, but no significant effects of DAT1 on striatal activity were found. Although the importance of the DAT1 haplotype as a risk factor for adult ADHD was again demonstrated in this study, the mechanism by which this gene increases disease risk remains largely unknown. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. and ECNP. All rights reserved.

  15. Dopamine Modulates Reward-Related Vigor

    PubMed Central

    Beierholm, Ulrik; Guitart-Masip, Marc; Economides, Marcos; Chowdhury, Rumana; Düzel, Emrah; Dolan, Ray; Dayan, Peter

    2013-01-01

    Subjects routinely control the vigor with which they emit motoric responses. However, the bulk of formal treatments of decision-making ignores this dimension of choice. A recent theoretical study suggested that action vigor should be influenced by experienced average reward rate and that this rate is encoded by tonic dopamine in the brain. We previously examined how average reward rate modulates vigor as exemplified by response times and found a measure of agreement with the first suggestion. In the current study, we examined the second suggestion, namely the potential influence of dopamine signaling on vigor. Ninety healthy subjects participated in a double-blind experiment in which they received one of the following: placebo, L-DOPA (which increases dopamine levels in the brain), or citalopram (which has a selective, if complex, effect on serotonin levels). Subjects performed multiple trials of a rewarded odd-ball discrimination task in which we varied the potential reward over time in order to exercise the putative link between vigor and average reward rate. Replicating our previous findings, we found that a significant fraction of the variance in subjects' responses could be explained by our experimentally manipulated changes in average reward rate. Crucially, this relationship was significantly stronger under L-Dopa than under Placebo, suggesting that the impact of average reward levels on action vigor is indeed subject to a dopaminergic influence. PMID:23419875

  16. Dopamine modulates reward-related vigor.

    PubMed

    Beierholm, Ulrik; Guitart-Masip, Marc; Economides, Marcos; Chowdhury, Rumana; Düzel, Emrah; Dolan, Ray; Dayan, Peter

    2013-07-01

    Subjects routinely control the vigor with which they emit motoric responses. However, the bulk of formal treatments of decision-making ignores this dimension of choice. A recent theoretical study suggested that action vigor should be influenced by experienced average reward rate and that this rate is encoded by tonic dopamine in the brain. We previously examined how average reward rate modulates vigor as exemplified by response times and found a measure of agreement with the first suggestion. In the current study, we examined the second suggestion, namely the potential influence of dopamine signaling on vigor. Ninety healthy subjects participated in a double-blind experiment in which they received one of the following: placebo, L-DOPA (which increases dopamine levels in the brain), or citalopram (which has a selective, if complex, effect on serotonin levels). Subjects performed multiple trials of a rewarded odd-ball discrimination task in which we varied the potential reward over time in order to exercise the putative link between vigor and average reward rate. Replicating our previous findings, we found that a significant fraction of the variance in subjects' responses could be explained by our experimentally manipulated changes in average reward rate. Crucially, this relationship was significantly stronger under L-Dopa than under Placebo, suggesting that the impact of average reward levels on action vigor is indeed subject to a dopaminergic influence.

  17. Split Brain Functioning.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cassel, Russell N.

    1978-01-01

    Summarizing recent research, this article defines the functions performed by the left and right sides of the human brain. Attention is given to the right side, or the nondominant side, of the brain and its potential in terms of perception of the environment, music, art, geometry, and the aesthetics. (JC)

  18. Split Brain Functioning.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cassel, Russell N.

    1978-01-01

    Summarizing recent research, this article defines the functions performed by the left and right sides of the human brain. Attention is given to the right side, or the nondominant side, of the brain and its potential in terms of perception of the environment, music, art, geometry, and the aesthetics. (JC)

  19. Lutein and Brain Function

    PubMed Central

    Erdman, John W.; Smith, Joshua W.; Kuchan, Matthew J.; Mohn, Emily S.; Johnson, Elizabeth J.; Rubakhin, Stanislav S.; Wang, Lin; Sweedler, Jonathan V.; Neuringer, Martha

    2015-01-01

    Lutein is one of the most prevalent carotenoids in nature and in the human diet. Together with zeaxanthin, it is highly concentrated as macular pigment in the foveal retina of primates, attenuating blue light exposure, providing protection from photo-oxidation and enhancing visual performance. Recently, interest in lutein has expanded beyond the retina to its possible contributions to brain development and function. Only primates accumulate lutein within the brain, but little is known about its distribution or physiological role. Our team has begun to utilize the rhesus macaque (Macaca mulatta) model to study the uptake and bio-localization of lutein in the brain. Our overall goal has been to assess the association of lutein localization with brain function. In this review, we will first cover the evolution of the non-human primate model for lutein and brain studies, discuss prior association studies of lutein with retina and brain function, and review approaches that can be used to localize brain lutein. We also describe our approach to the biosynthesis of 13C-lutein, which will allow investigation of lutein flux, localization, metabolism and pharmacokinetics. Lastly, we describe potential future research opportunities. PMID:26566524

  20. Brain Dynamics Promotes Function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lourenço, Carlos

    Dynamical structure in the brain promotes biological function. Natural scientists look for correlations between measured electrical signals and behavior or mental states. Computational scientists have new opportunities to receive ’algorithmic’ inspiration from brain processes and propose computational paradigms. Thus a tradition which dates back to the 1940s with neural nets research is renewed. Real processes in the brain are ’complex’ and withstand trivial descriptions. However, dynamical complexity need not be at odds with a computational description of the phenomena and with the inspiration for algorithms that actually compute something in an engineering sense. We engage this complexity from a computational viewpoint, not excluding dynamical regimes that a number of authors are willing to label as chaos. The key question is: what may we be missing computation-wise if we overlook brain dynamics? At this point in brain research, we are happy if we can at least provide a partial answer.

  1. Cellular signal mechanisms of reward-related plasticity in the hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Isokawa, Masako

    2012-01-01

    The hippocampus has the extraordinary capacity to process and store information. Consequently, there is an intense interest in the mechanisms that underline learning and memory. Synaptic plasticity has been hypothesized to be the neuronal substrate for learning. Ca(2+) and Ca(2+)-activated kinases control cellular processes of most forms of hippocampal synapse plasticity. In this paper, I aim to integrate our current understanding of Ca(2+)-mediated synaptic plasticity and metaplasticity in motivational and reward-related learning in the hippocampus. I will introduce two representative neuromodulators that are widely studied in reward-related learning (e.g., ghrelin and endocannabinoids) and show how they might contribute to hippocampal neuron activities and Ca(2+)-mediated signaling processes in synaptic plasticity. Additionally, I will discuss functional significance of these two systems and their signaling pathways for its relevance to maladaptive reward learning leading to addiction.

  2. Task-specific functional brain geometry from model maps.

    PubMed

    Langs, Georg; Samaras, Dimitris; Paragios, Nikos; Honorio, Jean; Alia-Klein, Nelly; Tomasi, Dardo; Volkow, Nora D; Goldstein, Rita Z

    2008-01-01

    In this paper we propose model maps to derive and represent the intrinsic functional geometry of a brain from functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) data for a specific task. Model maps represent the coherence of behavior of individual fMRI-measurements for a set of observations, or a time sequence. The maps establish a relation between individual positions in the brain by encoding the blood oxygen level dependent (BOLD) signal over a time period in a Markov chain. They represent this relation by mapping spatial positions to a new metric space, the model map. In this map the Euclidean distance between two points relates to the joint modeling behavior of their signals and thus the co-dependencies of the corresponding signals. The map reflects the functional as opposed to the anatomical geometry of the brain. It provides a quantitative tool to explore and study global and local patterns of resource allocation in the brain. To demonstrate the merit of this representation, we report quantitative experimental results on 29 fMRI time sequences, each with sub-sequences corresponding to 4 different conditions for two groups of individuals. We demonstrate that drug abusers exhibit lower differentiation in brain interactivity between baseline and reward related tasks, which could not be quantified until now.

  3. Positive mood enhances reward-related neural activity

    PubMed Central

    Nusslock, Robin

    2016-01-01

    Although behavioral research has shown that positive mood leads to desired outcomes in nearly every major life domain, no studies have directly examined the effects of positive mood on the neural processes underlying reward-related affect and goal-directed behavior. To address this gap, participants in the present fMRI study experienced either a positive (n = 20) or neutral (n = 20) mood induction and subsequently completed a monetary incentive delay task that assessed reward and loss processing. Consistent with prediction, positive mood elevated activity specifically during reward anticipation in corticostriatal neural regions that have been implicated in reward processing and goal-directed behavior, including the nucleus accumbens, caudate, lateral orbitofrontal cortex and putamen, as well as related paralimbic regions, including the anterior insula and ventromedial prefrontal cortex. These effects were not observed during reward outcome, loss anticipation or loss outcome. Critically, this is the first study to report that positive mood enhances reward-related neural activity. Our findings have implications for uncovering the neural mechanisms by which positive mood enhances goal-directed behavior, understanding the malleability of reward-related neural activity, and developing targeted treatments for psychiatric disorders characterized by deficits in reward processing. PMID:26833919

  4. Modulating Brain Oscillations to Drive Brain Function

    PubMed Central

    Thut, Gregor

    2014-01-01

    Do neuronal oscillations play a causal role in brain function? In a study in this issue of PLOS Biology, Helfrich and colleagues address this long-standing question by attempting to drive brain oscillations using transcranial electrical current stimulation. Remarkably, they were able to manipulate visual perception by forcing brain oscillations of the left and right visual hemispheres into synchrony using oscillatory currents over both hemispheres. Under this condition, human observers more often perceived an inherently ambiguous visual stimulus in one of its perceptual instantiations. These findings shed light on the mechanisms underlying neuronal computation. They show that it is the neuronal oscillations that drive the visual experience, not the experience driving the oscillations. And they indicate that synchronized oscillatory activity groups brain areas into functional networks. This points to new ways for controlled experimental and possibly also clinical interventions for the study and modulation of brain oscillations and associated functions. PMID:25549340

  5. Modulating brain oscillations to drive brain function.

    PubMed

    Thut, Gregor

    2014-12-01

    Do neuronal oscillations play a causal role in brain function? In a study in this issue of PLOS Biology, Helfrich and colleagues address this long-standing question by attempting to drive brain oscillations using transcranial electrical current stimulation. Remarkably, they were able to manipulate visual perception by forcing brain oscillations of the left and right visual hemispheres into synchrony using oscillatory currents over both hemispheres. Under this condition, human observers more often perceived an inherently ambiguous visual stimulus in one of its perceptual instantiations. These findings shed light on the mechanisms underlying neuronal computation. They show that it is the neuronal oscillations that drive the visual experience, not the experience driving the oscillations. And they indicate that synchronized oscillatory activity groups brain areas into functional networks. This points to new ways for controlled experimental and possibly also clinical interventions for the study and modulation of brain oscillations and associated functions.

  6. The restless brain: attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, resting-state functional connectivity, and intrasubject variability.

    PubMed

    Castellanos, F Xavier; Kelly, Clare; Milham, Michael P

    2009-10-01

    To highlight recent advances in the conceptualization of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) emerging from neuroimaging and endophenotypic approaches. We selectively reviewed recent published literature on the phenomena of resting-state functional connectivity, intrasubject variability, and diffusion tensor imaging pertaining to ADHD. Recent advances based on the novel approach of resting-state functional connectivity appear to be highly promising and likely to link to studies of intrasubject variability. Endophenotypic fractionation may offer a means of addressing the complex heterogeneity of ADHD on the path to testable models of pathophysiology. Such models focusing on intrasubject variability, intrinsic brain activity, and reward-related processing are progressing rapidly.

  7. Increased Reward-Related Behaviors during Sleep and Wakefulness in Sleepwalking and Idiopathic Nightmares

    PubMed Central

    Perogamvros, Lampros; Aberg, Kristoffer; Gex-Fabry, Marianne; Perrig, Stephen; Cloninger, C. Robert; Schwartz, Sophie

    2015-01-01

    to reward-related brain functions. They also provide further support to the notion that reward-seeking networks are active during human sleep. PMID:26287974

  8. Linking variability in brain chemistry and circuit function through multimodal human neuroimaging.

    PubMed

    Fisher, P M; Hariri, A R

    2012-08-01

    Identifying neurobiological mechanisms mediating the emergence of individual differences in behavior is critical for advancing our understanding of relative risk for psychopathology. Neuroreceptor positron emission tomography (PET) and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) can be used to assay in vivo regional brain chemistry and function, respectively. Typically, these neuroimaging modalities are implemented independently despite the capacity for integrated data sets to offer unique insight into molecular mechanisms associated with brain function. Through examples from the serotonin and dopamine system and its effects on threat- and reward-related brain function, we review evidence for how such a multimodal neuroimaging strategy can be successfully implemented. Furthermore, we discuss how multimodal PET-fMRI can be integrated with techniques such as imaging genetics, pharmacological challenge paradigms and gene-environment interaction models to more completely map biological pathways mediating individual differences in behavior and related risk for psychopathology and inform the development of novel therapeutic targets.

  9. [Dehydroepiandrosterone and brain functioning].

    PubMed

    Goncharov, N P; Katsiia, G V; Nizhnik, A N

    2005-01-01

    The adrenal glands synthesize dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) and its sulphate form (DHEAS) more intensively than they do other steroid hormones. Researchers are interested in these hormones for several reasons. Firstly, for some years they have been trying to find the reason for DHEA and DHEAS to be synthesized and present in the organism in such high concentrations. Secondly, their attention have been attracted by age-dependent regression of DHEA, which is strictly determined. Thirdly, despite longstanding efforts of scientists, the physiological role and spectrum of the biological activity of DHEA is still unclear. Evidence of that DHEA and DHEAS can be synthesized in situ in the brain tissue, received in rat experiments, urged researchers to clarify the role of these neurosteroids in the CNS. The presented review covers ways of neurosteroid synthesis, possible mechanisms of the regulation of these processes, and their dynamics under the condition of stress. The authors analyze experimental and clinical observations undertaken with a goal to clarify a possible role of DHEA in the manifestation of various brain functions. Special attention is payed to ambiguous results of modern studies, dedicated to replacement therapy of various disorders of CNS functioning (Alzheimer's disease, depression, age-specific memory impairment, sleep disturbance etc.) with DHEAS.

  10. Reduced reward-related probability learning in schizophrenia patients.

    PubMed

    Yılmaz, Alpaslan; Simsek, Fatma; Gonul, Ali Saffet

    2012-01-01

    Although it is known that individuals with schizophrenia demonstrate marked impairment in reinforcement learning, the details of this impairment are not known. The aim of this study was to test the hypothesis that reward-related probability learning is altered in schizophrenia patients. Twenty-five clinically stable schizophrenia patients and 25 age- and gender-matched controls participated in the study. A simple gambling paradigm was used in which five different cues were associated with different reward probabilities (50%, 67%, and 100%). Participants were asked to make their best guess about the reward probability of each cue. Compared with controls, patients had significant impairment in learning contingencies on the basis of reward-related feedback. The correlation analyses revealed that the impairment of patients partially correlated with the severity of negative symptoms as measured on the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale but that it was not related to antipsychotic dose. In conclusion, the present study showed that the schizophrenia patients had impaired reward-based learning and that this was independent from their medication status.

  11. Reciprocal Inhibitory Interactions Between the Reward-Related Effects of Leptin and Cocaine.

    PubMed

    You, Zhi-Bing; Wang, Bin; Liu, Qing-Rong; Wu, Yan; Otvos, Laszlo; Wise, Roy A

    2016-03-01

    Cocaine is habit-forming because of its ability to enhance dopaminergic neurotransmission in the forebrain. In addition to neuronal inputs, forebrain dopamine circuits are modulated by hormonal influences; one of these is leptin, an adipose-derived hormone that attenuates the rewarding effects of food- and hunger-associated brain stimulation reward. Here we report reciprocal inhibition between the reward-related effects of leptin and the reward-related effects of cocaine in rats. First, we report that cocaine and the expectancy of cocaine each depresses plasma leptin levels. Second, we report that exogenous leptin, given systemically or directly into the ventral tegmental area, attenuates the ability of cocaine to elevate dopamine levels in the nucleus accumbens, the ability of cocaine to establish a conditioned place preference, and the ability of cocaine-predictive stimuli to prolong responding in extinction of cocaine-seeking. Thus, whereas leptin represents an endogenous antagonist of the habit-forming and habit-sustaining effects of cocaine, this antagonism is attenuated by cocaine and comes to be attenuated by the expectancy of cocaine.

  12. Cognitive Control, Reward Related Decision Making and Outcomes of Late-Life Depression Treated with an Antidepressant

    PubMed Central

    Alexopoulos, George S.; Manning, Kevin; Kanellopoulos, Dora; McGovern, Amanda; Seirup, Joanna K.; Banerjee, Samprit; Gunning, Faith

    2015-01-01

    Background Executive processes consist of at least two sets of functions: one concerned with cognitive control and the other with reward-related decision making. Abnormal performance in both sets occurs in late-life depression. This study tested the hypothesis that only abnormal performance in cognitive control tasks predicts poor outcomes of late-life depression treated with escitalopram. Methods We studied older subjects with major depression (N=53) and non-depressed subjects (N=30). Executive functions were tested with the Iowa Gambling Test (IGT), Stroop Color/Word test, Tower of London, and Dementia Rating Scale-Initiation/Perseveration Domain (DRS-IP). After a 2-week placebo washout, depressed subjects received escitalopram (target daily dose: 20 mg) for 12 weeks. Results There were no significant differences between depressed and non-depressed subjects on executive function tests. Hierarchical cluster analysis of depressed subjects identified a Cognitive Control Cluster (abnormal Stroop, Tower, DRS-IP), a Reward-Related Cluster (IGT), and an Executively Unimpaired Cluster. Decline in depression was greater in the Executively Unimpaired (t=−2.09, df=331, p=0.0375) and the Reward-Related Cluster (t=−2.33, df=331,p=0.0202) than the Cognitive Control Cluster. The Executively Unimpaired Cluster (t=2.17, df=331, p=0.03) and the Reward-Related Cluster (t=2.03, df=331, p=0.0433) had a higher probability of remission than the Cognitive Control Cluster. Conclusions Dysfunction of cognitive control functions, but not reward-related decision making, may influence the decline of symptoms and the probability of remission of late-life depression treated with escitalopram. If replicated, simple to administer cognitive control tests may be used to select depressed older patients at risk for poor outcomes to SSRIs who may require structured psychotherapy. PMID:26169527

  13. Fairness influences early signatures of reward-related neural processing.

    PubMed

    Massi, Bart; Luhmann, Christian C

    2015-12-01

    Many humans exhibit a strong preference for fairness during decision-making. Although there is evidence that social factors influence reward-related and affective neural processing, it is unclear if this effect is mediated by compulsory outcome evaluation processes or results from slower deliberate cognition. Here we show that the feedback-related negativity (FRN) and late positive potential (LPP), two signatures of early hedonic processing, are modulated by the fairness of rewards during a passive rating task. We find that unfair payouts elicit larger FRNs than fair payouts, whereas fair payouts elicit larger LPPs than unfair payouts. This is true both in the time-domain, where the FRN and LPP are related, and in the time-frequency domain, where the two signals are largely independent. Ultimately, this work demonstrates that fairness affects the early stages of reward and affective processing, suggesting a common biological mechanism for social and personal reward evaluation.

  14. Structure of brain functional networks.

    PubMed

    Kuchaiev, Oleksii; Wang, Po T; Nenadic, Zoran; Przulj, Natasa

    2009-01-01

    Brain is a complex network optimized both for segregated and distributed information processing. To perform cognitive tasks, different areas of the brain must "cooperate," thereby forming complex networks of interactions also known as brain functional networks. Previous studies have shown that these networks exhibit "small-world" characteristics. Small-world topology, however, is a general property of all brain functional networks and does not capture structural changes in these networks in response to different stimuli or cognitive tasks. Here we show how novel graph theoretic techniques can be utilized for precise analysis of brain functional networks. These techniques allow us to detect structural changes in brain functional networks in response to different stimuli or cognitive tasks. For certain types of cognitive tasks we have found that these networks exhibit geometric structure in addition to the small-world topology. The method has been applied to the electrocorticographic signals of six epileptic patients.

  15. Functional Connectivity of Reward Processing in the Brain

    PubMed Central

    Camara, Estela; Rodriguez-Fornells, Antoni; Münte, Thomas F.

    2008-01-01

    Controversial results have been reported concerning the neural mechanisms involved in the processing of rewards and punishments. On the one hand, there is evidence suggesting that monetary gains and losses activate a similar fronto-subcortical network. On the other hand, results of recent studies imply that reward and punishment may engage distinct neural mechanisms. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) we investigated both regional and interregional functional connectivity patterns while participants performed a gambling task featuring unexpectedly high monetary gains and losses. Classical univariate statistical analysis showed that monetary gains and losses activated a similar fronto-striatal-limbic network, in which main activation peaks were observed bilaterally in the ventral striatum. Functional connectivity analysis showed similar responses for gain and loss conditions in the insular cortex, the amygdala, and the hippocampus that correlated with the activity observed in the seed region ventral striatum, with the connectivity to the amygdala appearing more pronounced after losses. Larger functional connectivity was found to the medial orbitofrontal cortex for negative outcomes. The fact that different functional patterns were obtained with both analyses suggests that the brain activations observed in the classical univariate approach identifies the involvement of different functional networks in the current task. These results stress the importance of studying functional connectivity in addition to standard fMRI analysis in reward-related studies. PMID:19242558

  16. Brain Functioning Models for Learning.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tipps, Steve; And Others

    This paper describes three models of brain function, each of which contributes to an integrated understanding of human learning. The first model, the up-and-down model, emphasizes the interconnection between brain structures and functions, and argues that since physiological, emotional, and cognitive responses are inseparable, the learning context…

  17. Two views of brain function.

    PubMed

    Raichle, Marcus E

    2010-04-01

    Traditionally studies of brain function have focused on task-evoked responses. By their very nature, such experiments tacitly encourage a reflexive view of brain function. Although such an approach has been remarkably productive, it ignores the alternative possibility that brain functions are mainly intrinsic, involving information processing for interpreting, responding to and predicting environmental demands. Here I argue that the latter view best captures the essence of brain function, a position that accords well with the allocation of the brain's energy resources. Recognizing the importance of intrinsic activity will require integrating knowledge from cognitive and systems neuroscience with cellular and molecular neuroscience where ion channels, receptors, components of signal transduction and metabolic pathways are all in a constant state of flux.

  18. Emerging concepts of brain function.

    PubMed

    Bach-Y-Rita, Paul

    2005-06-01

    For over 40 years, since I first obtained evidence for nonsynaptic diffusion neurotransmission (most scientists call it Volume Transmission), I have been convinced that we scientists were ignoring organizational dynamics other than the mechanistic synaptic organization of the brain. For many years it was an uneasy feeling, since I was aware there are so many avenues to explore in brain function. I have wondered how much we scientists have ignored, in our quest to understand how the brain really works, due to our efforts to "be scientific". In addition to the difficulty of understanding how the brain functions, how could we even begin to explore the human experience? In this paper I will first discuss some emerging concepts of brain function. I will then comment on the development of concepts that have been a part of my own research experience.

  19. [Physical activity and brain function].

    PubMed

    Kempermann, G

    2012-06-01

    Physical activity has direct and indirect effects on brain function in health and disease. Findings demonstrating that physical activity improves cognitive and non-cognitive functions and is preventive for several neuropsychiatric disorders have attracted particular interest. This short review focuses on sports and physical exercise in normal brain function and summarizes which mechanisms might underlie the observed effects, which methodological problems exist, which relationships exist to concepts of plasticity and neural reserves and what evolutionary relevance the initially surprising finding that physical exercise is good for the brain has.

  20. Higher Brain Function.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chiaia, N.L.; Teyler, T.J.

    1983-01-01

    Focuses on how learning works. Discusses three major components related to processing information--sensory and perceptual systems, integration of information, and output of information--and developmental and environmental factors affecting brain information in each of these areas. Concludes with discussion of biological bases for cognitive and…

  1. Brain function, disease and dementia.

    PubMed

    Sandilyan, Malarvizhi Babu; Dening, Tom

    2015-05-27

    Dementia is a consequence of brain disease. This article, the second in this series on dementia, discusses normal brain function and how certain functions are localised to different areas of the brain. This is important in determining the symptoms of dementia, depending on which parts of the brain are most directly involved. The most common types of dementia - Alzheimer's disease, vascular dementia, dementia with Lewy bodies and frontotemporal dementia - affect the brain in different ways and cause different changes at the microscopic level. Dementia is affected by genetics, and recent advances in molecular techniques have improved our understanding of some of the mechanisms involved, which in turns suggests possibilities for new treatments in the future.

  2. Vitamin K and brain function.

    PubMed

    Ferland, Guylaine

    2013-11-01

    One of the fat-soluble vitamins, vitamin K was initially discovered for its role in blood coagulation. Although several vitamin K-dependent hemostatic proteins are particularly important for the brain, other vitamin K-dependent proteins (VKDPs), not associated with blood coagulation, also contribute to the brain function. In addition to the VKDPs, vitamin K participates in the nervous system through its involvement in sphingolipid metabolism, a class of lipids widely present in brain cell membranes. Classically known for their structural role, sphingolipids are biologically potent molecules involved in a wide range of cellular actions. Also, there is growing evidence that the K vitamer, menaquinone-4, has anti-inflammatory activity and offers protection against oxidative stress. Finally, although limited in numbers, reports point to a modulatory role of vitamin K in cognition. This short review presents an overview of the known role of vitamin K in brain function to date.

  3. Magnetic Resonance, Functional (fMRI) -- Brain

    MedlinePlus

    ... thought, speech, movement and sensation, which is called brain mapping. help assess the effects of stroke, trauma or degenerative disease (such as Alzheimer's) on brain function. monitor the growth and function of brain ...

  4. Natriuretic Hormones in Brain Function

    PubMed Central

    Hodes, Anastasia; Lichtstein, David

    2014-01-01

    Natriuretic hormones (NH) include three groups of compounds: the natriuretic peptides (ANP, BNP and CNP), the gastrointestinal peptides (guanylin and uroguanylin), and endogenous cardiac steroids. These substances induce the kidney to excrete sodium and therefore participate in the regulation of sodium and water homeostasis, blood volume, and blood pressure (BP). In addition to their peripheral functions, these hormones act as neurotransmitters or neuromodulators in the brain. In this review, the established information on the biosynthesis, release and function of NH is discussed, with particular focus on their role in brain function. The available literature on the expression patterns of each of the NH and their receptors in the brain is summarized, followed by the evidence for their roles in modulating brain function. Although numerous open questions exist regarding this issue, the available data support the notion that NH participate in the central regulation of BP, neuroprotection, satiety, and various psychiatric conditions, including anxiety, addiction, and depressive disorders. In addition, the interactions between the different NH in the periphery and the brain are discussed. PMID:25506340

  5. The effects of poor quality sleep on brain function and risk taking in adolescence.

    PubMed

    Telzer, Eva H; Fuligni, Andrew J; Lieberman, Matthew D; Galván, Adriana

    2013-05-01

    Insufficient sleep and poor quality sleep are pervasive during adolescence and relate to impairments in cognitive control and increased risk taking. However, the neurobiology underlying the association between sleep and adolescent behavior remains elusive. In the current study, we examine how poor sleep quality relates to cognitive control and reward related brain function during risk taking. Forty-six adolescents participated in a functional magnetic imaging (fMRI) scan during which they completed a cognitive control and risk taking task. Behaviorally, adolescents who reported poorer sleep also exhibited greater risk-taking. This association was paralleled by less recruitment of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) during cognitive control, greater insula activation during reward processing, and reduced functional coupling between the DLPFC and affective regions including the insula and ventral striatum during reward processing. Collectively, these results suggest that poor sleep may exaggerate the normative imbalance between affective and cognitive control systems, leading to greater risk-taking in adolescents.

  6. Functional Brain Basis of Hypnotizability

    PubMed Central

    Hoeft, Fumiko; Gabrieli, John D.E.; Whitfield-Gabrieli, Susan; Haas, Brian W.; Bammer, Roland; Menon, Vinod; Spiegel, David

    2015-01-01

    Context Focused hypnotic concentration is a model for brain control over sensation and behavior. Pain and anxiety can be effectively alleviated by hypnotic suggestion, which modulates activity in brain regions associated with focused attention, but the specific neural network underlying this phenomenon is not known. Objective The main goal of the study was to investigate the brain basis of hypnotizability. Design Cross sectional, in-vivo neuroimaging study. Setting Academic medical center at Stanford University School of Medicine. Patients 12 adults with high and 12 adults with low hypnotizability. Main Outcome Measures (1) functional MRI (fMRI) to measure functional connectivity networks at rest including default-mode, salience and executive-control networks, (2) structural T1 MRI to measure regional grey and white matter volumes, and (3) diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) to measure white matter microstructural integrity. Results High-compared to low-hypnotizable individuals showed greater functional connectivity between left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC), an executive-control region of the brain, and the salience network composed of the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex (dACC), anterior insula, amygdala, and ventral striatum, involved in detecting, integrating, and filtering relevant somatic, autonomic, and emotional information, using independent component analysis (ICA). Seed based analysis confirmed elevated functional coupling between the dACC and the DLPFC in high, compared to low, hypnotizables. These functional differences were not due to variation in brain structure in these regions, including regional grey and white matter volumes and white matter microstructure. Conclusions Our results provide novel evidence that altered functional connectivity in DLPFC and dACC may underlie hypnotizability. Future studies focusing on how these functional networks change and interact during hypnosis are warranted. PMID:23026956

  7. Behavioral and neural evidence of incentive bias for immediate rewards relative to preference-matched delayed rewards

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Shan; Ainslie, George; Giragosian, Lisa; Monterosso, John R.

    2010-01-01

    Several theories of self-control (including intertemporal bargaining Ainslie (1992) and self-signaling Bodner and Prelec (2001)) imply that intertemporal decisions can be more farsighted than would be predicted by the incentive associated with rewards outside a decision context. We examined this hypothesis using behavior and functional neuroimaging. First, subjects expressed preferences between amounts of money delayed by four months and smaller amounts available that day. This allowed us to establish “indifference pairs” individualized to each participant -- immediate and delayed amounts that were equally preferred. Participants subsequently performed a reaction time fMRI task (Knutson et al, 2001a) that provided them with distinct opportunities to win each of the rewards that comprised the indifference pairs. Anatomical Region of Interest analysis as well as whole-brain analysis indicated greater response recruited by the immediate rewards (relative to the preference matched delayed rewards) in regions previously implicated as sensitive to incentive value using the same task (including bilateral putamen, bilateral anterior insula and midbrain). RT to the target was also faster during the immediate relative to delayed reward trials (p < .01), and individual differences in RT between immediate versus delayed reward trials correlated with variance in MR signal in those clusters that responded preferentially to immediate rewards (r = .33, p < .05). These findings indicate a discrepancy in incentive associated with the immediate versus the preference-matched delayed rewards. This discrepancy may mark the contribution of self-control processes that are recruited during decision-making, but that are absent when rewards are individually anticipated. PMID:19940177

  8. Reactivation of Reward-Related Patterns from Single Past Episodes Supports Memory-Based Decision Making.

    PubMed

    Wimmer, G Elliott; Büchel, Christian

    2016-03-09

    Rewarding experiences exert a strong influence on later decision making. While decades of neuroscience research have shown how reinforcement gradually shapes preferences, decisions are often influenced by single past experiences. Surprisingly, relatively little is known about the influence of single learning episodes. Although recent work has proposed a role for episodes in decision making, it is largely unknown whether and how episodic experiences contribute to value-based decision making and how the values of single episodes are represented in the brain. In multiple behavioral experiments and an fMRI experiment, we tested whether and how rewarding episodes could support later decision making. Participants experienced episodes of high reward or low reward in conjunction with incidental, trial-unique neutral pictures. In a surprise test phase, we found that participants could indeed remember the associated level of reward, as evidenced by accurate source memory for value and preferences to re-engage with rewarded objects. Further, in a separate experiment, we found that high-reward objects shown as primes before a gambling task increased financial risk taking. Neurally, re-exposure to objects in the test phase led to significant reactivation of reward-related patterns. Importantly, individual variability in the strength of reactivation predicted value memory performance. Our results provide a novel demonstration that affect-related neural patterns are reactivated during later experience. Reactivation of value information represents a mechanism by which memory can guide decision making.

  9. [Brain function and white matter].

    PubMed

    Wake, Hiroaki; Kato, Daisuke

    2015-04-01

    Accumulated evidence shows that neural information processing takes place in superficial layers of the brain called the gray matter. Synapses, which connect different neurons reside in the gray matter and are considered the major components of information processing and plasticity. On the other hand, myelinated axons lie beneath the gray matter. These bundles of cables connect neurons in the different brain regions to form functional neural circuits. Myelinated axons were of little of interest to neuroscientists and have long been ignored in the formation of functional neuronal circuits. Recent evidence shows that myelin formed by oligodendrocytes shows plastic changes depending on neuronal activity. In this issue, we discuss the plastic changes of myelin and its functional role in learning and training.

  10. Subanesthetic ketamine decreases the incentive-motivational value of reward-related cues.

    PubMed

    Fitzpatrick, Christopher J; Morrow, Jonathan D

    2017-01-01

    The attribution of incentive-motivational value to reward-related cues contributes to cue-induced craving and relapse in addicted patients. Recently, it was demonstrated that subanesthetic ketamine increases motivation to quit and decreases cue-induced craving in cocaine-dependent individuals. Although the underlying mechanism of this effect is currently unknown, one possibility is that subanesthetic ketamine decreases the incentive-motivational value of reward-related cues. In the present study, we used a Pavlovian conditioned approach procedure to identify sign-trackers, rats that attribute incentive-motivational value to reward-related cues, and goal-trackers, rats that assign only predictive value to reward-related cues. This model is of interest because sign-trackers are more vulnerable to cue-induced reinstatement of drug-seeking behavior and will persist in this drug-seeking behavior despite adverse consequences. We tested the effect of subanesthetic ketamine on the expression of Pavlovian conditioned approach behavior and the conditioned reinforcing properties of a reward-related cue in sign- and goal-trackers. We found that subanesthetic ketamine decreased sign-tracking and increased goal-tracking behavior in sign-trackers, though it had no effect on conditioned reinforcement. These results suggest that subanesthetic ketamine may be a promising pharmacotherapy for addiction that acts by decreasing the incentive-motivational value of reward-related cues.

  11. Diffeomorphic functional brain surface alignment: Functional demons.

    PubMed

    Nenning, Karl-Heinz; Liu, Hesheng; Ghosh, Satrajit S; Sabuncu, Mert R; Schwartz, Ernst; Langs, Georg

    2017-08-01

    Aligning brain structures across individuals is a central prerequisite for comparative neuroimaging studies. Typically, registration approaches assume a strong association between the features used for alignment, such as macro-anatomy, and the variable observed, such as functional activation or connectivity. Here, we propose to use the structure of intrinsic resting state fMRI signal correlation patterns as a basis for alignment of the cortex in functional studies. Rather than assuming the spatial correspondence of functional structures between subjects, we have identified locations with similar connectivity profiles across subjects. We mapped functional connectivity relationships within the brain into an embedding space, and aligned the resulting maps of multiple subjects. We then performed a diffeomorphic alignment of the cortical surfaces, driven by the corresponding features in the joint embedding space. Results show that functional alignment based on resting state fMRI identifies functionally homologous regions across individuals with higher accuracy than alignment based on the spatial correspondence of anatomy. Further, functional alignment enables measurement of the strength of the anatomo-functional link across the cortex, and reveals the uneven distribution of this link. Stronger anatomo-functional dissociation was found in higher association areas compared to primary sensory- and motor areas. Functional alignment based on resting state features improves group analysis of task based functional MRI data, increasing statistical power and improving the delineation of task-specific core regions. Finally, a comparison of the anatomo-functional dissociation between cohorts is demonstrated with a group of left and right handed subjects. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Developmental Continuity in Reward-Related Enhancement of Cognitive Control

    PubMed Central

    Strang, Nicole M.; Pollak, Seth D.

    2015-01-01

    Adolescents engage in more risky behavior than children or adults. The most prominent hypothesis for this phenomenon is that brain systems governing reward sensitivity and brain systems governing self-regulation mature at different rates. Those systems governing reward sensitivity mature in advance of those governing self-control. This hypothesis has substantial empirical support, however, the evidence supporting this theory has been exclusively derived from contexts where self-control systems are required to regulate reward sensitivity in order to promote adaptive behavior. In adults, reward promotes a shift to a proactive control strategy and better cognitive control performance. It is unclear whether children and adolescents will respond to reward in the same way. Using fMRI methodology, we explored whether children and adolescents would demonstrate a shift to proactive control in the context of reward. We tested 22 children, 20 adolescents, and 23 adults. In contrast to our hypothesis, children, adolescents, and adults all demonstrated a shift to proactive cognitive control in the context of reward. In light of the results, current neurobiological theories of adolescent behavior need to be refined to reflect that in certain contexts there is continuity in the manner reward and cognitive control systems interact across development. PMID:25160678

  13. Thermodynamic laws apply to brain function.

    PubMed

    Salerian, Alen J

    2010-02-01

    Thermodynamic laws and complex system dynamics govern brain function. Thus, any change in brain homeostasis by an alteration in brain temperature, neurotransmission or content may cause region-specific brain dysfunction. This is the premise for the Salerian Theory of Brain built upon a new paradigm for neuropsychiatric disorders: the governing influence of neuroanatomy, neurophysiology, thermodynamic laws. The principles of region-specific brain function thermodynamics are reviewed. The clinical and supporting evidence including the paradoxical effects of various agents that alter brain homeostasis is demonstrated.

  14. Functional brain imaging across development.

    PubMed

    Rubia, Katya

    2013-12-01

    The developmental cognitive neuroscience literature has grown exponentially over the last decade. This paper reviews the functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) literature on brain function development of typically late developing functions of cognitive and motivation control, timing and attention as well as of resting state neural networks. Evidence shows that between childhood and adulthood, concomitant with cognitive maturation, there is progressively increased functional activation in task-relevant lateral and medial frontal, striatal and parieto-temporal brain regions that mediate these higher level control functions. This is accompanied by progressively stronger functional inter-regional connectivity within task-relevant fronto-striatal and fronto-parieto-temporal networks. Negative age associations are observed in earlier developing posterior and limbic regions, suggesting a shift with age from the recruitment of "bottom-up" processing regions towards "top-down" fronto-cortical and fronto-subcortical connections, leading to a more mature, supervised cognition. The resting state fMRI literature further complements this evidence by showing progressively stronger deactivation with age in anti-correlated task-negative resting state networks, which is associated with better task performance. Furthermore, connectivity analyses during the resting state show that with development increasingly stronger long-range connections are being formed, for example, between fronto-parietal and fronto-cerebellar connections, in both task-positive networks and in task-negative default mode networks, together with progressively lesser short-range connections, suggesting progressive functional integration and segregation with age. Overall, evidence suggests that throughout development between childhood and adulthood, there is progressive refinement and integration of both task-positive fronto-cortical and fronto-subcortical activation and task-negative deactivation, leading to

  15. Superbinding in Integrative Brain Function and Memory

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2007-11-02

    A:\\basar.doc 1 SUPERBINDING IN INTEGRATIVE BRAIN FUNCTION AND MEMORY E. Basar1,2, M. Özgören1,2, S. Karakas1,3 1TUBITAK Brain Dynamics...percepts and integrative brain function. Keywords- superbinding, oscillations, binding, coherence 1 Aim of the report The present report aims to...introduce the superbinding theory to describe the machineries of integrative brain function instead of single neuron doctrine. This concept is based on

  16. Modulation of reward-related neural activation on sensation seeking across development.

    PubMed

    Hawes, Samuel W; Chahal, Rajpreet; Hallquist, Michael N; Paulsen, David J; Geier, Charles F; Luna, Beatriz

    2017-02-15

    Sensation seeking is a personality construct associated with an increased propensity for engaging in risk-taking. Associations with deleterious outcomes ranging from mental health impairments to increased mortality rates highlight important public health concerns related to this construct. Although some have suggested that increased neural responsivity to reward within the ventral striatum (e.g., nucleus accumbens) may drive sensation seeking behaviors, few studies have examined the neural mechanisms associated with stable individual differences in sensation seeking across development. To address this issue, the current study used functional magnetic resonance imaging to examine the association between neural responding to reward and stable patterns of sensation seeking across a three-year follow-up period among healthy adolescents and young adults (N = 139). Results indicated that during early adolescence (~ages 10-12), increased reactivity to reward within the nucleus accumbens (NAcc) was associated with lower levels of sensation seeking across a three-year follow-up. In middle adolescence (~ages 12-16), there was no evidence of a relationship between NAcc reactivity and sensation seeking. However, during the transition from late adolescence into adulthood (~ages 17-25), heightened reward-related reactivity in the NAcc was linked to increased sensation seeking. Findings suggest that the neural mechanisms underlying individual differences in trait-like levels of sensation seeking change from early to late adolescence. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Insulin action in brain regulates systemic metabolism and brain function.

    PubMed

    Kleinridders, André; Ferris, Heather A; Cai, Weikang; Kahn, C Ronald

    2014-07-01

    Insulin receptors, as well as IGF-1 receptors and their postreceptor signaling partners, are distributed throughout the brain. Insulin acts on these receptors to modulate peripheral metabolism, including regulation of appetite, reproductive function, body temperature, white fat mass, hepatic glucose output, and response to hypoglycemia. Insulin signaling also modulates neurotransmitter channel activity, brain cholesterol synthesis, and mitochondrial function. Disruption of insulin action in the brain leads to impairment of neuronal function and synaptogenesis. In addition, insulin signaling modulates phosphorylation of tau protein, an early component in the development of Alzheimer disease. Thus, alterations in insulin action in the brain can contribute to metabolic syndrome, and the development of mood disorders and neurodegenerative diseases.

  18. Brain Modulyzer: Interactive Visual Analysis of Functional Brain Connectivity

    SciTech Connect

    Murugesan, Sugeerth; Bouchard, Kristopher; Brown, Jesse A.; Hamann, Bernd; Seeley, William W.; Trujillo, Andrew; Weber, Gunther H.

    2016-05-09

    Here, we present Brain Modulyzer, an interactive visual exploration tool for functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) brain scans, aimed at analyzing the correlation between different brain regions when resting or when performing mental tasks. Brain Modulyzer combines multiple coordinated views—such as heat maps, node link diagrams, and anatomical views—using brushing and linking to provide an anatomical context for brain connectivity data. Integrating methods from graph theory and analysis, e.g., community detection and derived graph measures, makes it possible to explore the modular and hierarchical organization of functional brain networks. Providing immediate feedback by displaying analysis results instantaneously while changing parameters gives neuroscientists a powerful means to comprehend complex brain structure more effectively and efficiently and supports forming hypotheses that can then be validated via statistical analysis. In order to demonstrate the utility of our tool, we also present two case studies—exploring progressive supranuclear palsy, as well as memory encoding and retrieval

  19. Aging and functional brain networks

    SciTech Connect

    Tomasi D.; Tomasi, D.; Volkow, N.D.

    2011-07-11

    Aging is associated with changes in human brain anatomy and function and cognitive decline. Recent studies suggest the aging decline of major functional connectivity hubs in the 'default-mode' network (DMN). Aging effects on other networks, however, are largely unknown. We hypothesized that aging would be associated with a decline of short- and long-range functional connectivity density (FCD) hubs in the DMN. To test this hypothesis, we evaluated resting-state data sets corresponding to 913 healthy subjects from a public magnetic resonance imaging database using functional connectivity density mapping (FCDM), a voxelwise and data-driven approach, together with parallel computing. Aging was associated with pronounced long-range FCD decreases in DMN and dorsal attention network (DAN) and with increases in somatosensory and subcortical networks. Aging effects in these networks were stronger for long-range than for short-range FCD and were also detected at the level of the main functional hubs. Females had higher short- and long-range FCD in DMN and lower FCD in the somatosensory network than males, but the gender by age interaction effects were not significant for any of the networks or hubs. These findings suggest that long-range connections may be more vulnerable to aging effects than short-range connections and that, in addition to the DMN, the DAN is also sensitive to aging effects, which could underlie the deterioration of attention processes that occurs with aging.

  20. Functional Prions in the Brain.

    PubMed

    Rayman, Joseph B; Kandel, Eric R

    2017-01-03

    Prions are proteins that can adopt self-perpetuating conformations and are traditionally regarded as etiological agents of infectious neurodegenerative diseases in humans, such as Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, kuru, and transmissible encephalopathies. More recently, a growing consensus has emerged that prion-like, self-templating mechanisms also underlie a variety of neurodegenerative disorders, including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Alzheimer's disease, and Huntington's disease. Perhaps most surprising, not all prion-like aggregates are associated with pathological changes. There are now several examples of prion-like proteins in mammals that serve positive biological functions in their aggregated state. In this review, we discuss functional prions in the nervous system, with particular emphasis on the cytoplasmic polyadenylation element-binding protein (CPEB) and the role of its prion-like aggregates in synaptic plasticity and memory. We also mention a more recent example of a functional prion-like protein in the brain, TIA-1, and its role during stress. These studies of functional prion-like proteins have provided a number of generalizable insights on how prion-based protein switches may operate to serve physiological functions in higher eukaryotes.

  1. Hippocampal place cells construct reward related sequences through unexplored space

    PubMed Central

    Saleem, Aman B

    2015-01-01

    Dominant theories of hippocampal function propose that place cell representations are formed during an animal's first encounter with a novel environment and are subsequently replayed during off-line states to support consolidation and future behaviour. Here we report that viewing the delivery of food to an unvisited portion of an environment leads to off-line pre-activation of place cells sequences corresponding to that space. Such ‘preplay’ was not observed for an unrewarded but otherwise similar portion of the environment. These results suggest that a hippocampal representation of a visible, yet unexplored environment can be formed if the environment is of motivational relevance to the animal. We hypothesise such goal-biased preplay may support preparation for future experiences in novel environments. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.06063.001 PMID:26112828

  2. Lateralized reward-related visual discrimination in the avian entopallium.

    PubMed

    Verhaal, Josine; Kirsch, Janina A; Vlachos, Ioannis; Manns, Martina; Güntürkün, Onur

    2012-04-01

    In humans and many other animals, the two cerebral hemispheres are partly specialized for different functions. However, knowledge about the neuronal basis of lateralization is mostly lacking. The visual system of birds is an excellent model in which to investigate hemispheric asymmetries as birds show a pronounced left hemispheric advantage in the discrimination of various visual objects. In addition, visual input crosses at the optic chiasm and thus testing of each hemisphere is easily accomplished. We aimed to find a neuronal correlate for three hallmarks of visual lateralization in pigeons: first, the animals learn faster with the right eye-left hemisphere; second, they reach higher performance levels under this condition; third, visually guided behavior is mostly under left hemisphere control. To this end, we recorded from the left and right forebrain entopallium while the animals performed a colour discrimination task. We found that, even before learning, left entopallial neurons were more responsive to visual stimulation. Subsequent discrimination acquisition recruited more neuronal responses in the left entopallium and these cells showed a higher degree of differentiation between the rewarded and the unrewarded stimulus. Thus, differential left-right responses are already present, albeit to a modest degree, before learning. As soon as some cues are associated with reward, however, this asymmetry increases substantially and the higher discrimination ratio of the left hemispheric tectofugal pathway would not only contribute to a higher performance of this hemisphere but could thereby also result in a left hemispheric dominance over downstream motor structures via reward-associated feedback systems.

  3. Describing functional diversity of brain regions and brain networks.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Michael L; Kinnison, Josh; Pessoa, Luiz

    2013-06-01

    Despite the general acceptance that functional specialization plays an important role in brain function, there is little consensus about its extent in the brain. We sought to advance the understanding of this question by employing a data-driven approach that capitalizes on the existence of large databases of neuroimaging data. We quantified the diversity of activation in brain regions as a way to characterize the degree of functional specialization. To do so, brain activations were classified in terms of task domains, such as vision, attention, and language, which determined a region's functional fingerprint. We found that the degree of diversity varied considerably across the brain. We also quantified novel properties of regions and of networks that inform our understanding of several task-positive and task-negative networks described in the literature, including defining functional fingerprints for entire networks and measuring their functional assortativity, namely the degree to which they are composed of regions with similar functional fingerprints. Our results demonstrate that some brain networks exhibit strong assortativity, whereas other networks consist of relatively heterogeneous parts. In sum, rather than characterizing the contributions of individual brain regions using task-based functional attributions, we instead quantified their dispositional tendencies, and related those to each region's affiliative properties in both task-positive and task-negative contexts. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Interactivity and Reward-Related Neural Activation during a Serious Videogame

    PubMed Central

    Cole, Steven W.; Yoo, Daniel J.; Knutson, Brian

    2012-01-01

    This study sought to determine whether playing a “serious” interactive digital game (IDG) – the Re-Mission videogame for cancer patients – activates mesolimbic neural circuits associated with incentive motivation, and if so, whether such effects stem from the participatory aspects of interactive gameplay, or from the complex sensory/perceptual engagement generated by its dynamic event-stream. Healthy undergraduates were randomized to groups in which they were scanned with functional magnetic resonance imaging (FMRI) as they either actively played Re-Mission or as they passively observed a gameplay audio-visual stream generated by a yoked active group subject. Onset of interactive game play robustly activated mesolimbic projection regions including the caudate nucleus and nucleus accumbens, as well as a subregion of the parahippocampal gyrus. During interactive gameplay, subjects showed extended activation of the thalamus, anterior insula, putamen, and motor-related regions, accompanied by decreased activation in parietal and medial prefrontal cortex. Offset of interactive gameplay activated the anterior insula and anterior cingulate. Between-group comparisons of within-subject contrasts confirmed that mesolimbic activation was significantly more pronounced in the active playgroup than in the passive exposure control group. Individual difference analyses also found the magnitude of parahippocampal activation following gameplay onset to correlate with positive attitudes toward chemotherapy assessed both at the end of the scanning session and at an unannounced one-month follow-up. These findings suggest that IDG-induced activation of reward-related mesolimbic neural circuits stems primarily from participatory engagement in gameplay (interactivity), rather than from the effects of vivid and dynamic sensory stimulation. PMID:22442733

  5. Promoting Motor Function by Exercising the Brain

    PubMed Central

    Perrey, Stephane

    2013-01-01

    Exercise represents a behavioral intervention that enhances brain health and motor function. The increase in cerebral blood volume in response to physical activity may be responsible for improving brain function. Among the various neuroimaging techniques used to monitor brain hemodynamic response during exercise, functional near-infrared spectroscopy could facilitate the measurement of task-related cortical responses noninvasively and is relatively robust with regard to the subjects’ motion. Although the components of optimal exercise interventions have not been determined, evidence from animal and human studies suggests that aerobic exercise with sufficiently high intensity has neuroprotective properties and promotes motor function. This review provides an insight into the effect of physical activity (based on endurance and resistance exercises) on brain function for producing movement. Since most progress in the study of brain function has come from patients with neurological disorders (e.g., stroke and Parkinson’s patients), this review presents some findings emphasizing training paradigms for restoring motor function. PMID:24961309

  6. Genetic Versus Pharmacological Assessment of the Role of Cannabinoid Type 2 Receptors in Alcohol Reward-Related Behaviors

    PubMed Central

    Powers, Matthew S.; Breit, Kristen R.; Chester, Julia A.

    2016-01-01

    Background Emerging evidence suggests that the endocannabinoid system (ECS) is involved in modulating the rewarding effects of abused drugs. Recently, the cannabinoid receptor 2 (CB2R) was shown to be expressed in brain reward circuitry and is implicated in modulating the rewarding effects of alcohol. Methods CB2 ligands and CB2R knockout (KO) mice were used to assess CB2R involvement in alcohol reward-related behavior in 2 well-established behavioral models: limited-access 2-bottle choice drinking and conditioned place preference (CPP). For the pharmacological studies, mice received pre-treatments of either vehicle, the CB2R agonist JWH-133 (10 and 20 mg/kg) or the CB2R antagonist AM630 (10 and 20 mg/kg) 30 minutes before behavioral testing. For the genetic studies, CB2R KO mice were compared to wild-type (WT) littermate controls. Results CB2R KO mice displayed increased magnitude of alcohol-induced CPP compared to WT mice. Neither agonism nor antagonism of CB2R affected alcohol intake or the expression of CPP, and antagonism of CB2R during CPP acquisition trials also did not affect CPP. Conclusions The CB2R KO CPP data provide partial support for the hypothesis that CB2Rs are involved in the modulation of alcohol reward-related behaviors. However, pharmacological manipulation of CB2Rs did not alter alcohol’s rewarding effects in the alcohol-seeking models used here. These results highlight the importance of pharmacological validation of effects seen with lifetime KO models. Given the ongoing efforts toward medications development, future studies should continue to explore the role of the CB2R as a potential neurobiological target for the treatment of alcohol use disorders. PMID:26756798

  7. Persistent effects of prior chronic exposure to corticosterone on reward-related learning and motivation in rodents.

    PubMed

    Olausson, Peter; Kiraly, Drew D; Gourley, Shannon L; Taylor, Jane R

    2013-02-01

    Repeated or prolonged exposure to stress has profound effects on a wide spectrum of behavioral and neurobiological processes and has been associated with the pathophysiology of depression. The multifaceted nature of this disorder includes despair, anhedonia, diminished motivation, and disrupted cognition, and it has been proposed that depression is also associated with reduced reward-motivated learning. We have previously reported that prior chronic corticosterone exposure to mice produces a lasting depressive-like state that can be reversed by chronic antidepressant treatment. In the present study, we tested the effects of prior chronic exposure to corticosterone (50 μg/ml) administered to rats or to mice in drinking water for 14 days followed by dose-tapering over 9 days. The exposure to corticosterone produced lasting deficits in the acquisition of reward-related learning tested on a food-motivated instrumental task conducted 10-20 days after the last day of full dose corticosterone exposure. Rats exposed to corticosterone also displayed reduced responding on a progressive ratio schedule of reinforcement when tested on day 21 after exposure. Amitriptyline (200 mg/ml in drinking water) exposure for 14 days to mice produced the opposite effect, enhancing food-motivated instrumental acquisition and performance. Repeated treatment with amitriptyline (5 mg/kg, intraperitoneally; bid) subsequent to corticosterone exposure also prevented the corticosterone-induced deficits in rats. These results are consistent with aberrant reward-related learning and motivational processes in depressive states and provide new evidence that stress-induced neuroadaptive alterations in cortico-limbic-striatal brain circuits involved in learning and motivation may play a critical role in aspects of mood disorders.

  8. The brain timewise: how timing shapes and supports brain function.

    PubMed

    Hari, Riitta; Parkkonen, Lauri

    2015-05-19

    We discuss the importance of timing in brain function: how temporal dynamics of the world has left its traces in the brain during evolution and how we can monitor the dynamics of the human brain with non-invasive measurements. Accurate timing is important for the interplay of neurons, neuronal circuitries, brain areas and human individuals. In the human brain, multiple temporal integration windows are hierarchically organized, with temporal scales ranging from microseconds to tens and hundreds of milliseconds for perceptual, motor and cognitive functions, and up to minutes, hours and even months for hormonal and mood changes. Accurate timing is impaired in several brain diseases. From the current repertoire of non-invasive brain imaging methods, only magnetoencephalography (MEG) and scalp electroencephalography (EEG) provide millisecond time-resolution; our focus in this paper is on MEG. Since the introduction of high-density whole-scalp MEG/EEG coverage in the 1990s, the instrumentation has not changed drastically; yet, novel data analyses are advancing the field rapidly by shifting the focus from the mere pinpointing of activity hotspots to seeking stimulus- or task-specific information and to characterizing functional networks. During the next decades, we can expect increased spatial resolution and accuracy of the time-resolved brain imaging and better understanding of brain function, especially its temporal constraints, with the development of novel instrumentation and finer-grained, physiologically inspired generative models of local and network activity. Merging both spatial and temporal information with increasing accuracy and carrying out recordings in naturalistic conditions, including social interaction, will bring much new information about human brain function.

  9. The brain timewise: how timing shapes and supports brain function

    PubMed Central

    Hari, Riitta; Parkkonen, Lauri

    2015-01-01

    We discuss the importance of timing in brain function: how temporal dynamics of the world has left its traces in the brain during evolution and how we can monitor the dynamics of the human brain with non-invasive measurements. Accurate timing is important for the interplay of neurons, neuronal circuitries, brain areas and human individuals. In the human brain, multiple temporal integration windows are hierarchically organized, with temporal scales ranging from microseconds to tens and hundreds of milliseconds for perceptual, motor and cognitive functions, and up to minutes, hours and even months for hormonal and mood changes. Accurate timing is impaired in several brain diseases. From the current repertoire of non-invasive brain imaging methods, only magnetoencephalography (MEG) and scalp electroencephalography (EEG) provide millisecond time-resolution; our focus in this paper is on MEG. Since the introduction of high-density whole-scalp MEG/EEG coverage in the 1990s, the instrumentation has not changed drastically; yet, novel data analyses are advancing the field rapidly by shifting the focus from the mere pinpointing of activity hotspots to seeking stimulus- or task-specific information and to characterizing functional networks. During the next decades, we can expect increased spatial resolution and accuracy of the time-resolved brain imaging and better understanding of brain function, especially its temporal constraints, with the development of novel instrumentation and finer-grained, physiologically inspired generative models of local and network activity. Merging both spatial and temporal information with increasing accuracy and carrying out recordings in naturalistic conditions, including social interaction, will bring much new information about human brain function. PMID:25823867

  10. [Brain function recovery after prolonged posttraumatic coma].

    PubMed

    Klimash, A V; Zhanaidarov, Z S

    2016-01-01

    To explore the characteristics of brain function recovery in patients after prolonged posttraumatic coma and with long-unconscious states. Eighty-seven patients after prolonged posttraumatic coma were followed-up for two years. An analysis of a clinical/neurological picture after a prolonged episode of coma was based on the dynamics of vital functions, neurological status and patient's reactions to external stimuli. Based on the dynamics of the clinical/neurological picture that shows the recovery of functions of the certain brain areas, three stages of brain function recovery after a prolonged episode of coma were singled out: brain stem areas, diencephalic areas and telencephalic areas. These functional/anatomic areas of brain function recovery after prolonged coma were compared to the present classifications.

  11. Brain Structure-function Couplings (FY11)

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2012-01-01

    influence time-evolving models of global brain function and dynamic changes in cognitive performance. Both structural and functional connections change on...Artifact Resistant Measure to Detect Cognitive EEG Activity During Locomotion. Journal of NeuroEngineering and Rehabilitation, submitted. 10...Specifically, identifying the communication between brain regions that occurs during tasks may provide information regarding the cognitive processes involved in

  12. Functional data analysis in brain imaging studies.

    PubMed

    Tian, Tian Siva

    2010-01-01

    Functional data analysis (FDA) considers the continuity of the curves or functions, and is a topic of increasing interest in the statistics community. FDA is commonly applied to time-series and spatial-series studies. The development of functional brain imaging techniques in recent years made it possible to study the relationship between brain and mind over time. Consequently, an enormous amount of functional data is collected and needs to be analyzed. Functional techniques designed for these data are in strong demand. This paper discusses three statistically challenging problems utilizing FDA techniques in functional brain imaging analysis. These problems are dimension reduction (or feature extraction), spatial classification in functional magnetic resonance imaging studies, and the inverse problem in magneto-encephalography studies. The application of FDA to these issues is relatively new but has been shown to be considerably effective. Future efforts can further explore the potential of FDA in functional brain imaging studies.

  13. Brain foods: the effects of nutrients on brain function

    PubMed Central

    Gómez-Pinilla, Fernando

    2009-01-01

    It has long been suspected that the relative abundance of specific nutrients can affect cognitive processes and emotions. Newly described influences of dietary factors on neuronal function and synaptic plasticity have revealed some of the vital mechanisms that are responsible for the action of diet on brain health and mental function. Several gut hormones that can enter the brain, or that are produced in the brain itself, influence cognitive ability. In addition, well-established regulators of synaptic plasticity, such as brain-derived neurotrophic factor, can function as metabolic modulators, responding to peripheral signals such as food intake. Understanding the molecular basis of the effects of food on cognition will help us to determine how best to manipulate diet in order to increase the resistance of neurons to insults and promote mental fitness. PMID:18568016

  14. Insulin Action in Brain Regulates Systemic Metabolism and Brain Function

    PubMed Central

    Kleinridders, André; Ferris, Heather A.; Cai, Weikang

    2014-01-01

    Insulin receptors, as well as IGF-1 receptors and their postreceptor signaling partners, are distributed throughout the brain. Insulin acts on these receptors to modulate peripheral metabolism, including regulation of appetite, reproductive function, body temperature, white fat mass, hepatic glucose output, and response to hypoglycemia. Insulin signaling also modulates neurotransmitter channel activity, brain cholesterol synthesis, and mitochondrial function. Disruption of insulin action in the brain leads to impairment of neuronal function and synaptogenesis. In addition, insulin signaling modulates phosphorylation of tau protein, an early component in the development of Alzheimer disease. Thus, alterations in insulin action in the brain can contribute to metabolic syndrome, and the development of mood disorders and neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:24931034

  15. The development of Human Functional Brain Networks

    PubMed Central

    Power, Jonathan D; Fair, Damien A; Schlaggar, Bradley L

    2010-01-01

    Recent advances in MRI technology have enabled precise measurements of correlated activity throughout the brain, leading to the first comprehensive descriptions of functional brain networks in humans. This article reviews the growing literature on the development of functional networks, from infancy through adolescence, as measured by resting state functional connectivity MRI. We note several limitations of traditional approaches to describing brain networks, and describe a powerful framework for analyzing networks, called graph theory. We argue that characterization of the development of brain systems (e.g. the default mode network) should be comprehensive, considering not only relationships within a given system, but also how these relationships are situated within wider network contexts. We note that, despite substantial reorganization of functional connectivity, several large-scale network properties appear to be preserved across development, suggesting that functional brain networks, even in children, are organized in manners similar to other complex systems. PMID:20826306

  16. Bioengineered functional brain-like cortical tissue

    PubMed Central

    Tang-Schomer, Min D.; White, James D.; Tien, Lee W.; Schmitt, L. Ian; Valentin, Thomas M.; Graziano, Daniel J.; Hopkins, Amy M.; Omenetto, Fiorenzo G.; Haydon, Philip G.; Kaplan, David L.

    2014-01-01

    The brain remains one of the most important but least understood tissues in our body, in part because of its complexity as well as the limitations associated with in vivo studies. Although simpler tissues have yielded to the emerging tools for in vitro 3D tissue cultures, functional brain-like tissues have not. We report the construction of complex functional 3D brain-like cortical tissue, maintained for months in vitro, formed from primary cortical neurons in modular 3D compartmentalized architectures with electrophysiological function. We show that, on injury, this brain-like tissue responds in vitro with biochemical and electrophysiological outcomes that mimic observations in vivo. This modular 3D brain-like tissue is capable of real-time nondestructive assessments, offering previously unidentified directions for studies of brain homeostasis and injury. PMID:25114234

  17. The restless brain: how intrinsic activity organizes brain function

    PubMed Central

    Raichle, Marcus E.

    2015-01-01

    Traditionally studies of brain function have focused on task-evoked responses. By their very nature such experiments tacitly encourage a reflexive view of brain function. While such an approach has been remarkably productive at all levels of neuroscience, it ignores the alternative possibility that brain functions are mainly intrinsic and ongoing, involving information processing for interpreting, responding to and predicting environmental demands. I suggest that the latter view best captures the essence of brain function, a position that accords well with the allocation of the brain's energy resources, its limited access to sensory information and a dynamic, intrinsic functional organization. The nature of this intrinsic activity, which exhibits a surprising level of organization with dimensions of both space and time, is revealed in the ongoing activity of the brain and its metabolism. As we look to the future, understanding the nature of this intrinsic activity will require integrating knowledge from cognitive and systems neuroscience with cellular and molecular neuroscience where ion channels, receptors, components of signal transduction and metabolic pathways are all in a constant state of flux. The reward for doing so will be a much better understanding of human behaviour in health and disease. PMID:25823869

  18. The restless brain: how intrinsic activity organizes brain function.

    PubMed

    Raichle, Marcus E

    2015-05-19

    Traditionally studies of brain function have focused on task-evoked responses. By their very nature such experiments tacitly encourage a reflexive view of brain function. While such an approach has been remarkably productive at all levels of neuroscience, it ignores the alternative possibility that brain functions are mainly intrinsic and ongoing, involving information processing for interpreting, responding to and predicting environmental demands. I suggest that the latter view best captures the essence of brain function, a position that accords well with the allocation of the brain's energy resources, its limited access to sensory information and a dynamic, intrinsic functional organization. The nature of this intrinsic activity, which exhibits a surprising level of organization with dimensions of both space and time, is revealed in the ongoing activity of the brain and its metabolism. As we look to the future, understanding the nature of this intrinsic activity will require integrating knowledge from cognitive and systems neuroscience with cellular and molecular neuroscience where ion channels, receptors, components of signal transduction and metabolic pathways are all in a constant state of flux. The reward for doing so will be a much better understanding of human behaviour in health and disease.

  19. Interaction between DRD2 C957T polymorphism and an acute psychosocial stressor on reward-related behavioral impulsivity.

    PubMed

    White, Melanie J; Lawford, Bruce R; Morris, C Phillip; Young, Ross McD

    2009-05-01

    The dopamine D2 receptor (DRD2) C957T polymorphism CC genotype is associated with decreased striatal binding of DRD2 and executive function and working memory impairments in healthy adults. We investigated the relationships between C957T and acute stress with behavioral phenotypes of impulsivity in 72 young adults randomly allocated to either an acute psychosocial stress or relaxation induction condition. Homozygotes for 957C showed increased reward responsiveness after stress induction. They were also quicker when making immediate choices on the delay discounting task when stressed, compared with homozygotes who were not stressed. No effects were found for response inhibition, a dimension of impulsivity not related to extrinsic rewards. These data suggest that C957T is associated with a reward-related impulsivity endophenotype in response to acute psychosocial stress. Future studies should examine whether the greater sensitivity of 957C homozygotes to the effects of stress is mediated through dopamine release.

  20. Regulation of brain function by exercise.

    PubMed

    Sutoo, Den'etsu; Akiyama, Kayo

    2003-06-01

    The effect of excercise on brain function was investigated through animal experiments. Exercise leads to increased serum calcium levels, and the calcium is transported to the brain. This in turn enhances brain dopamine synthesis through a calmodulin-dependent system, and increased dopamine levels regulate various brain functions. There are abnormally low levels of dopamine in the neostriatum and nucleus accumbens of epileptic mice (El mice strain) and spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR). The low dopamine levels in those animals were improved following intracerebroventricular administration of calcium chloride. Dopamine levels and blood pressure in SHR were also normalized by exercise. In epileptic El mice, convulsions normalized dopamine levels and physiologic function. These findings suggest that exercise or convulsions affect brain function through calcium/calmodulin-dependent dopamine synthesis. This leads to the possibility that some symptoms of Parkinson's disease or senile dementia might be improved by exercise.

  1. Brain Function: Implications for Schooling.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Edwards, Clifford H.

    1982-01-01

    The implications of cerebral dominance for curriculum and instruction are enormous. Cognitive style, sex differences, instructional materials preparation and selection, and testing are affected by right or left brain hemisphere dominance. (CJ)

  2. The gravitational field and brain function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mei, Lei; Zhou, Chuan-Dai; Lan, Jing-Quan; Wang, Zhi-Ging; Wu, Wen-Can; Xue, Xin-Min

    The frontal cortex is recognized as the highest adaptive control center of the human brain. The principle of the ``frontalization'' of human brain function offers new possibilities for brain research in space. There is evolutionary and experimental evidence indicating the validity of the principle, including it's role in nervous response to gravitational stimulation. The gravitational field is considered here as one of the more constant and comprehensive factors acting on brain evolution, which has undergone some successive crucial steps: ``encephalization'', ``corticalization'', ``lateralization'' and ``frontalization''. The dominating effects of electrical responses from the frontal cortex have been discovered 1) in experiments under gravitational stimulus; and 2) in processes potentially relating to gravitational adaptation, such as memory and learning, sensory information processing, motor programing, and brain state control. A brain research experiment during space flight is suggested to test the role of the frontal cortex in space adaptation and it's potentiality in brain control.

  3. Reward-related decision making and long-term weight loss maintenance.

    PubMed

    Brockmeyer, Timo; Simon, Joe J; Becker, Alexandra; Friederich, Hans-Christoph

    2017-09-08

    Heightened sensitivity towards reward and insensitivity towards disadvantageous consequences may constitute a driving factor underlying unrestricted food intake and consequent weight gain in people with overweight and obesity. Therefore, the present study applied a behavioral economics approach to investigate the potential contribution of poor reward-related decision making to unsuccessful long-term weight loss maintenance (i.e. weight cycling). Based on previous research, it was expected that successful long-term weight loss maintainers would show a better performance in a gambling task than their less successful counterparts. Reward-related decision making was assessed post hoc using the Game of Dice Task in a total of 33 overweight and obese women who had either (a) successfully maintained initial weight loss of at least 10% of their body weight over one year or (b) had regained weight until at least their initial body weight prior to weight reduction (i.e. showed weight cycling). The groups did not differ in terms of age, current body weight, magnitude of initial weight reduction, educational level, and global intelligence level. As hypothesized, however, the group of successful long-term weight loss maintainers performed significantly better (i.e. showed less impulsive, more advantageous choices) in the Game of Dice Task than their less successful counterparts. The findings suggest that poor reward-related decision making is associated with weight cycling which is considered a key concern in weight loss treatments for overweight and obesity. Furthermore, the findings speak in favor of specific psychological interventions that are designed to bolster reward-related decision making. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Reward-Related Decision Making in Older Adults: Relationship to Clinical Presentation of Depression

    PubMed Central

    McGovern, Amanda R.; Alexopoulos, George S.; Yuen, Genevieve S.; Morimoto, Sarah Shizuko; Gunning, Faith M.

    2015-01-01

    Objective Impairment in reward processes has been found in individuals with depression and in the aging population. The purpose of this study was twofold: 1. To use an affective neuroscience probe to identify abnormalities in reward-related decision making in late-life depression. 2. To examine the relationship of reward-related decision making abnormalities in depressed, older adults to the clinical expression of apathy in depression. We hypothesized that relative to elderly, healthy subjects, depressed, elderly patients would exhibit impaired decision making and that apathetic, depressed patients would show greater impairment in decision making than non-apathetic, depressed patients. Methods We used the Iowa Gambling Task to examine reward-related decision making in 60 non-demented, elderly patients with non-psychotic major depression and 36 elderly, psychiatrically healthy participants. Apathy was quantified using the Apathy Evaluation Scale. Of those with major depression, 18 individuals reported clinically significant apathy whereas 42 participants did not have apathy. Results Older adults with depression and healthy comparison participants did not differ in their performance on the IGT. However, apathetic, depressed older adults adopted an advantageous strategy and selected cards from the conservative decks compared to non-apathetic, depressed older adults. Non-apathetic, depressed patients showed a failure to adopt a conservative strategy and persisted in making risky decisions throughout the task. Conclusions This study indicates that apathy in older, depressed adults is associated with a conservative response style on a behavioral probe of the systems involved in reward-related decision making. This conservative response style may be the result of reduced sensitivity to rewards in apathetic individuals. PMID:25306937

  5. Brain Modulyzer: Interactive Visual Analysis of Functional Brain Connectivity

    DOE PAGES

    Murugesan, Sugeerth; Bouchard, Kristopher; Brown, Jesse A.; ...

    2016-05-09

    Here, we present Brain Modulyzer, an interactive visual exploration tool for functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) brain scans, aimed at analyzing the correlation between different brain regions when resting or when performing mental tasks. Brain Modulyzer combines multiple coordinated views—such as heat maps, node link diagrams, and anatomical views—using brushing and linking to provide an anatomical context for brain connectivity data. Integrating methods from graph theory and analysis, e.g., community detection and derived graph measures, makes it possible to explore the modular and hierarchical organization of functional brain networks. Providing immediate feedback by displaying analysis results instantaneously while changing parametersmore » gives neuroscientists a powerful means to comprehend complex brain structure more effectively and efficiently and supports forming hypotheses that can then be validated via statistical analysis. In order to demonstrate the utility of our tool, we also present two case studies—exploring progressive supranuclear palsy, as well as memory encoding and retrieval« less

  6. Effects of the chronic restraint stress induced depression on reward-related learning in rats.

    PubMed

    Xu, Pan; Wang, Kezhu; Lu, Cong; Dong, Liming; Chen, Yixi; Wang, Qiong; Shi, Zhe; Yang, Yanyan; Chen, Shanguang; Liu, Xinmin

    2017-03-15

    Chronic mild or unpredictability stress produces a persistent depressive-like state. The main symptoms of depression include weight loss, despair, anhedonia, diminished motivation and mild cognition impairment, which could influence the ability of reward-related learning. In the present study, we aimed to evaluate the effects of chronic restraint stress on the performance of reward-related learning of rats. We used the exposure of repeated restraint stress (6h/day, for 28days) to induce depression-like behavior in rats. Then designed tasks including Pavlovian conditioning (magazine head entries), acquisition and maintenance of instrumental conditioning (lever pressing) and goal directed learning (higher fixed ratio schedule of reinforcement) to study the effects of chronic restraint stress. The results indicated that chronic restraint stress influenced rats in those aspects including the acquisition of a Pavlovian stimulus-outcome (S-O) association, the formation and maintenance of action-outcome (A-O) causal relation and the ability of learning in higher fixed ratio schedule. In conclusion, depression could influence the performances in reward-related learning obviously and the series of instrumental learning tasks may have potential as a method to evaluate cognitive changes in depression.

  7. Glucocorticoid receptor antagonism disrupts the reconsolidation of social reward-related memories in rats.

    PubMed

    Achterberg, E J Marijke; Trezza, Viviana; Vanderschuren, Louk J M J

    2014-06-01

    Reconsolidation is the process whereby consolidated memories are destabilized upon retrieval and restabilized to persist for later use. Although the neurobiology of the reconsolidation of both appetitive and aversive memories has been intensively investigated, reconsolidation of memories of physiologically relevant social rewards has received little attention. Social play, the most characteristic social behaviour displayed by young mammals, is highly rewarding, illustrated by the fact that it can induce conditioned place preference (CPP). Here, we investigated the role of signalling mechanisms implicated in memory processes, including reconsolidation, namely glucocorticoid, mineralocorticoid, NMDA glutamatergic and CB1 cannabinoid receptors, in the reconsolidation of social play-induced CPP in rats. Systemic treatment with the glucocorticoid receptor antagonist mifepristone before, but not immediately after, retrieval disrupted the reconsolidation of social play-induced CPP. Mifepristone did not affect social play-induced CPP in the absence of memory retrieval. Treatment with the NMDA receptor antagonist MK-801 modestly affected the reconsolidation of social play-induced CPP. However, the reconsolidation of social play-induced CPP was not affected by treatment with the mineralocorticoid and CB1 cannabinoid receptor antagonists spironolactone and rimonabant, respectively. We conclude that glucocorticoid neurotransmission mediates the reconsolidation of social reward-related memories in rats. These data indicate that the neural mechanisms of the reconsolidation of social reward-related memories only partially overlap with those underlying the reconsolidation of other reward-related memories.

  8. Glucocorticoid receptor antagonism disrupts reconsolidation of social reward-related memories in rats

    PubMed Central

    Achterberg, E.J. Marijke; Trezza, Viviana; Vanderschuren, Louk J.M.J.

    2014-01-01

    Reconsolidation is the process whereby consolidated memories are destabilized upon retrieval and restabilized to persist for later use. Although the neurobiology of reconsolidation of both appetitive and aversive memories has been intensively investigated, reconsolidation of memories of physiologically relevant social rewards has received little attention. Social play, the most characteristic social behaviour displayed by young mammals, is highly rewarding, illustrated by the fact that it can induce conditioned place preference (CPP). Here, we investigated the role of signaling mechanisms implicated in memory processes including reconsolidation, i.e. glucocorticoid, mineralocorticoid, NMDA glutamatergic and CB1 cannabinoid receptors, in the reconsolidation of social play-induced CPP in rats. Systemic treatment with the glucocorticoid receptor antagonist mifepristone before, but not immediately after retrieval, disrupted the reconsolidation of social play-induced CPP. Mifepristone did not affect social play-induced CPP in the absence of memory retrieval. Treatment with the NMDA receptor antagonist MK-801 modestly affected reconsolidation of social play-induced CPP. However, reconsolidation of social play-induced CPP was not affected by treatment with the mineralocorticoid and CB1 cannabinoid receptor antagonists spironolactone and rimonabant, respectively. We conclude that glucocorticoid neurotransmission mediates the reconsolidation of social reward-related memories in rats. These data indicate that the neural mechanisms of the reconsolidation of social reward-related memories only partially overlap with those underlying reconsolidation of other reward-related memories. PMID:24776489

  9. Reward-related decision making in eating and weight disorders: A systematic review and meta-analysis of the evidence from neuropsychological studies.

    PubMed

    Wu, Mudan; Brockmeyer, Timo; Hartmann, Mechthild; Skunde, Mandy; Herzog, Wolfgang; Friederich, Hans-Christoph

    2016-02-01

    Eating disorders (EDs) and overweight/obesity (OW/OB) are serious public health concerns that share common neuropsychological features and patterns of disturbed eating. Reward-related decision making as a basic neurocognitive function may trans-diagnostically underlie both pathological overeating and restricted eating. The present meta-analysis synthesizes the evidence from N=82 neuropsychological studies for altered reward-related decision making in all ED subtypes, OW and OB. The overall effect sizes for the differences between currently-ill ED patients and OW/OB people and controls were Hedge's g=-0.49 [CI: -0.63; -0.35], and Hedge's g=-0.39 [CI: -0.53; -0.25], respectively. Decision making was found to be altered to similar degrees in all ED subtypes and OB. Effect sizes, however, diverged for the different measures of decision making. Adolescents appear to be less affected than adults. When foods were used as rewarding stimuli, decision making was found to be intact in OB. The findings support that altered general reward-related decision making is a salient neuropsychological factor across eating and weight disorders in adulthood. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. [Modern methods of functional tomographic brain imaging for brain function reseaching in norm and pathology].

    PubMed

    Kireev, M V; Zakhs, D V; Korotkov, A D; Medvedev, S V

    2013-01-01

    For many years the modern methods of functional tomographic brain imaging (fMRI and PET) were actively used not only for the research of basic brain functions, but also in clinical practice. In present paper we described the basic characteristics of the signal registered with fMRI and PET, the principles of image reconstruction, as well as the methodological requirements, which are necessary to obtain reliable results. The advantages and limitations of modem tomographic methods of the brain functions investigation are discussed. The need of the complex approach use in brain study is emphasized and methods for the study of functional integration of the brain are suggested.

  11. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors containing α6 subunits contribute to alcohol reward-related behaviours

    PubMed Central

    Powers, M. S.; Broderick, H. J.; Drenan, R. M.; Chester, J. A.

    2015-01-01

    Evidence is emerging that neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in the mesolimbic dopamine (DA) system are involved in mediating the reinforcing effects of alcohol. Midbrain DA neurons express high levels of α6 subunit-containing nAChRs that modulate DA transmission, implicating their involvement in reward-related behaviours. This study assessed the role of α6-containing nAChRs in modulating alcohol reward using transgenic mice expressing mutant, hyper-sensitive α6 nAChR subunits (α6L9′ S mice). α6L9′ S mice and littermate controls were tested in three well-established models of alcohol reward: 24-h two-bottle choice drinking, drinking in the dark (DID), and conditioned place preference (CPP). Confocal microscopy and patch-clamp electrophysiology were used to show the localization and function of hypersensitive α6 subunit-containing nAChRs. Results indicate that female α6L9′ S mice showed significantly higher alcohol intake at low concentrations of alcohol (3% and 6%) in the two-bottle choice procedure. Both male and female α6L9′ S mice drank significantly more in the DID procedure and displayed an alcohol-induced place preference using a low dose of alcohol (0.5 g/kg) that was ineffective in littermate controls. Confocal microscopy showed that α6 subunit-containing nAChRs are selectively expressed on ventral tegmental area (VTA) DAergic, but not GABAergic neurons. Patch-clamp electrophysiology showed that VTA DA neurons of α6L9′ S mice are hypersensitive to ACh. Collectively, these results suggest that α6L9′ S mice are more sensitive to the rewarding effects of alcohol, and suggest that VTA α6 subunit-containing nAChRs modulate alcohol reward. Thus, α6 subunit-containing nAChRs may be a promising therapeutic target for treatment of alcohol use disorders. PMID:23594044

  12. Brain, Mind and Language Functional Architectures

    PubMed Central

    Fingelkurts, Andrew A; Fingelkurts, Alexander A; Marchetti, Giorgio

    2010-01-01

    The interaction between brain and language has been investigated by a vast amount of research and different approaches, which however do not offer a comprehensive and unified theoretical framework to analyze how brain functioning performs the mental processes we use in producing language and in understanding speech. This Special Issue addresses the need to develop such a general theoretical framework, by fostering an interaction among the various scientific disciplines and methodologies, which centres on investigating the functional architecture of brain, mind and language, and is articulated along the following main dimensions of research: (a) Language as a regulatory contour of brain and mental processes; (b) Language as a unique human phenomenon; (c) Language as a governor of human behaviour and brain operations; (d) Language as an organizational factor of ontogenesis of mentation and behaviour. PMID:20922047

  13. Sex Differences in Functional Brain Asymmetry.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1976-07-01

    to Wechsler’s norms [7], and their scores did not differ from either women with right-sided damage (t = 0.05, ns) or men with right-sided damage (t...brain injury. These findings suggest a greater degree of functional brain asym- metry in men than in women . A .c ....C . _t% :istr ivtiton ,tatrment...hemisphere specialization for spatial functions than did women . However, little is knovn about sex differences in the cerebral rep- resentation of verbal

  14. Exercise Benefits Brain Function: The Monoamine Connection

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Tzu-Wei; Kuo, Yu-Min

    2013-01-01

    The beneficial effects of exercise on brain function have been demonstrated in animal models and in a growing number of clinical studies on humans. There are multiple mechanisms that account for the brain-enhancing effects of exercise, including neuroinflammation, vascularization, antioxidation, energy adaptation, and regulations on neurotrophic factors and neurotransmitters. Dopamine (DA), noradrenaline (NE), and serotonin (5-HT) are the three major monoamine neurotransmitters that are known to be modulated by exercise. This review focuses on how these three neurotransmitters contribute to exercise affecting brain function and how it can work against neurological disorders. PMID:24961306

  15. Functional connectivity hubs of the mouse brain.

    PubMed

    Liska, Adam; Galbusera, Alberto; Schwarz, Adam J; Gozzi, Alessandro

    2015-07-15

    Recent advances in functional connectivity methods have made it possible to identify brain hubs - a set of highly connected regions serving as integrators of distributed neuronal activity. The integrative role of hub nodes makes these areas points of high vulnerability to dysfunction in brain disorders, and abnormal hub connectivity profiles have been described for several neuropsychiatric disorders. The identification of analogous functional connectivity hubs in preclinical species like the mouse may provide critical insight into the elusive biological underpinnings of these connectional alterations. To spatially locate functional connectivity hubs in the mouse brain, here we applied a fully-weighted network analysis to map whole-brain intrinsic functional connectivity (i.e., the functional connectome) at a high-resolution voxel-scale. Analysis of a large resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rsfMRI) dataset revealed the presence of six distinct functional modules related to known large-scale functional partitions of the brain, including a default-mode network (DMN). Consistent with human studies, highly-connected functional hubs were identified in several sub-regions of the DMN, including the anterior and posterior cingulate and prefrontal cortices, in the thalamus, and in small foci within well-known integrative cortical structures such as the insular and temporal association cortices. According to their integrative role, the identified hubs exhibited mutual preferential interconnections. These findings highlight the presence of evolutionarily-conserved, mutually-interconnected functional hubs in the mouse brain, and may guide future investigations of the biological foundations of aberrant rsfMRI hub connectivity associated with brain pathological states.

  16. Functional network organization of the human brain

    PubMed Central

    Power, Jonathan D; Cohen, Alexander L; Nelson, Steven M; Wig, Gagan S; Barnes, Kelly Anne; Church, Jessica A; Vogel, Alecia C; Laumann, Timothy O; Miezin, Fran M; Schlaggar, Bradley L; Petersen, Steven E

    2011-01-01

    Summary Real-world complex systems may be mathematically modeled as graphs, revealing properties of the system. Here we study graphs of functional brain organization in healthy adults using resting state functional connectivity MRI. We propose two novel brain-wide graphs, one of 264 putative functional areas, the other a modification of voxelwise networks that eliminates potentially artificial short-distance relationships. These graphs contain many subgraphs in good agreement with known functional brain systems. Other subgraphs lack established functional identities; we suggest possible functional characteristics for these subgraphs. Further, graph measures of the areal network indicate that the default mode subgraph shares network properties with sensory and motor subgraphs: it is internally integrated but isolated from other subgraphs, much like a “processing” system. The modified voxelwise graph also reveals spatial motifs in the patterning of systems across the cortex. PMID:22099467

  17. Structure and function of complex brain networks.

    PubMed

    Sporns, Olaf

    2013-09-01

    An increasing number of theoretical and empirical studies approach the function of the human brain from a network perspective. The analysis of brain networks is made feasible by the development of new imaging acquisition methods as well as new tools from graph theory and dynamical systems. This review surveys some of these methodological advances and summarizes recent findings on the architecture of structural and functional brain networks. Studies of the structural connectome reveal several modules or network communities that are interlinked by hub regions mediating communication processes between modules. Recent network analyses have shown that network hubs form a densely linked collective called a "rich club," centrally positioned for attracting and dispersing signal traffic. In parallel, recordings of resting and task-evoked neural activity have revealed distinct resting-state networks that contribute to functions in distinct cognitive domains. Network methods are increasingly applied in a clinical context, and their promise for elucidating neural substrates of brain and mental disorders is discussed.

  18. Dopamine Agonist Increases Risk Taking but Blunts Reward-Related Brain Activity

    PubMed Central

    Riba, Jordi; Krämer, Ulrike M.; Heldmann, Marcus; Richter, Sylvia; Münte, Thomas F.

    2008-01-01

    The use of D2/D3 dopaminergic agonists in Parkinson's disease (PD) may lead to pathological gambling. In a placebo-controlled double-blind study in healthy volunteers, we observed riskier choices in a lottery task after administration of the D3 receptor-preferring agonist pramipexole thus mimicking risk-taking behavior in PD. Moreover, we demonstrate decreased activation in the rostral basal ganglia and midbrain, key structures of the reward system, following unexpected high gains and therefore propose that pathological gambling in PD results from the need to seek higher rewards to overcome the blunted response in this system. PMID:18575579

  19. Measuring Motivation and Reward-Related Decision Making in the Rodent Operant Touchscreen System.

    PubMed

    Heath, Christopher J; Phillips, Benjamin U; Bussey, Timothy J; Saksida, Lisa M

    2016-01-04

    This unit is designed to facilitate implementation of the fixed and progressive ratio paradigms and the effort-related choice task in the rodent touchscreen apparatus to permit direct measurement of motivation and reward-related decision making in this equipment. These protocols have been optimized for use in the mouse and reliably yield stable performance levels that can be enhanced or suppressed by systemic pharmacological manipulation. Instructions are also provided for the adjustment of task parameters to permit use in mouse models of neurodegenerative disease. These tasks expand the utility of the rodent touchscreen apparatus beyond the currently available battery of cognitive assessment paradigms. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

  20. Elevated reward-related neural activation as a unique biological marker of bipolar disorder: assessment and treatment implications.

    PubMed

    Nusslock, Robin; Young, Christina B; Damme, Katherine S F

    2014-11-01

    Growing evidence indicates that risk for bipolar disorder is characterized by elevated activation in a fronto-striatal reward neural circuit involving the ventral striatum and orbitofrontal cortex, among other regions. It is proposed that individuals with abnormally elevated reward-related neural activation are at risk for experiencing an excessive increase in approach-related motivation during life events involving rewards or goal striving and attainment. In the extreme, this increase in motivation is reflected in hypomanic/manic symptoms. By contrast, unipolar depression (without a history of hypomania/mania) is characterized by decreased reward responsivity and decreased reward-related neural activation. Collectively, this suggests that risk for bipolar disorder and unipolar depression are characterized by distinct and opposite profiles of reward processing and reward-related neural activation. The objective of the present paper is threefold. First, we review the literature on reward processing and reward-related neural activation in bipolar disorder, and in particular risk for hypomania/mania. Second, we propose that reward-related neural activation reflects a biological marker of differential risk for bipolar disorder versus unipolar depression that may help facilitate psychiatric assessment and differential diagnosis. We also discuss, however, the challenges to using neuroscience techniques and biological markers in a clinical setting for assessment and diagnostic purposes. Lastly, we address the pharmacological and psychosocial treatment implications of research on reward-related neural activation in bipolar disorder.

  1. [Brain mechanisms of male sexual function].

    PubMed

    Wang, Ying; Dou, Xin; Li, Jun-Fa; Luo, Yan-Lin

    2011-08-01

    In this paper, we reviewed the brain imaging studies of male sexual function in recent years from three aspects: the brain mechanism of normal sexual function, the brain mechanism of sexual dysfunction, and the mechanism of drug therapy for sexual dysfunction. Studies show that the development stages of male sexual activities, such as the excitement phase, plateau phase and orgasm phase, are controlled by different neural networks. The mesodiencephalic transition zone may play an important role in the start up of male ejaculation. There are significant differences between sexual dysfunction males and normal males in activation patterns of the brain in sexual arousal. The medial orbitofrontal cortex and inferior frontal gyrus in the abnormal activation pattern are correlated with sexual dysfunction males in sexual arousal. Serum testosterone and morphine are commonly used drugs for male sexual dysfunction, whose mechanisms are to alter the activating levels of the medial orbitofrontal cortex, insula, claustrum and inferior temporal gyrus.

  2. Toward discovery science of human brain function.

    PubMed

    Biswal, Bharat B; Mennes, Maarten; Zuo, Xi-Nian; Gohel, Suril; Kelly, Clare; Smith, Steve M; Beckmann, Christian F; Adelstein, Jonathan S; Buckner, Randy L; Colcombe, Stan; Dogonowski, Anne-Marie; Ernst, Monique; Fair, Damien; Hampson, Michelle; Hoptman, Matthew J; Hyde, James S; Kiviniemi, Vesa J; Kötter, Rolf; Li, Shi-Jiang; Lin, Ching-Po; Lowe, Mark J; Mackay, Clare; Madden, David J; Madsen, Kristoffer H; Margulies, Daniel S; Mayberg, Helen S; McMahon, Katie; Monk, Christopher S; Mostofsky, Stewart H; Nagel, Bonnie J; Pekar, James J; Peltier, Scott J; Petersen, Steven E; Riedl, Valentin; Rombouts, Serge A R B; Rypma, Bart; Schlaggar, Bradley L; Schmidt, Sein; Seidler, Rachael D; Siegle, Greg J; Sorg, Christian; Teng, Gao-Jun; Veijola, Juha; Villringer, Arno; Walter, Martin; Wang, Lihong; Weng, Xu-Chu; Whitfield-Gabrieli, Susan; Williamson, Peter; Windischberger, Christian; Zang, Yu-Feng; Zhang, Hong-Ying; Castellanos, F Xavier; Milham, Michael P

    2010-03-09

    Although it is being successfully implemented for exploration of the genome, discovery science has eluded the functional neuroimaging community. The core challenge remains the development of common paradigms for interrogating the myriad functional systems in the brain without the constraints of a priori hypotheses. Resting-state functional MRI (R-fMRI) constitutes a candidate approach capable of addressing this challenge. Imaging the brain during rest reveals large-amplitude spontaneous low-frequency (<0.1 Hz) fluctuations in the fMRI signal that are temporally correlated across functionally related areas. Referred to as functional connectivity, these correlations yield detailed maps of complex neural systems, collectively constituting an individual's "functional connectome." Reproducibility across datasets and individuals suggests the functional connectome has a common architecture, yet each individual's functional connectome exhibits unique features, with stable, meaningful interindividual differences in connectivity patterns and strengths. Comprehensive mapping of the functional connectome, and its subsequent exploitation to discern genetic influences and brain-behavior relationships, will require multicenter collaborative datasets. Here we initiate this endeavor by gathering R-fMRI data from 1,414 volunteers collected independently at 35 international centers. We demonstrate a universal architecture of positive and negative functional connections, as well as consistent loci of inter-individual variability. Age and sex emerged as significant determinants. These results demonstrate that independent R-fMRI datasets can be aggregated and shared. High-throughput R-fMRI can provide quantitative phenotypes for molecular genetic studies and biomarkers of developmental and pathological processes in the brain. To initiate discovery science of brain function, the 1000 Functional Connectomes Project dataset is freely accessible at www.nitrc.org/projects/fcon_1000/.

  3. Metabolism and functions of copper in brain.

    PubMed

    Scheiber, Ivo F; Mercer, Julian F B; Dringen, Ralf

    2014-05-01

    Copper is an important trace element that is required for essential enzymes. However, due to its redox activity, copper can also lead to the generation of toxic reactive oxygen species. Therefore, cellular uptake, storage as well as export of copper have to be tightly regulated in order to guarantee sufficient copper supply for the synthesis of copper-containing enzymes but also to prevent copper-induced oxidative stress. In brain, copper is of importance for normal development. In addition, both copper deficiency as well as excess of copper can seriously affect brain functions. Therefore, this organ possesses ample mechanisms to regulate its copper metabolism. In brain, astrocytes are considered as important regulators of copper homeostasis. Impairments of homeostatic mechanisms in brain copper metabolism have been associated with neurodegeneration in human disorders such as Menkes disease, Wilson's disease and Alzheimer's disease. This review article will summarize the biological functions of copper in the brain and will describe the current knowledge on the mechanisms involved in copper transport, storage and export of brain cells. The role of copper in diseases that have been connected with disturbances in brain copper homeostasis will also be discussed.

  4. Entropy changes in brain function.

    PubMed

    Rosso, Osvaldo A

    2007-04-01

    The traditional way of analyzing brain electrical activity, on the basis of electroencephalography (EEG) records, relies mainly on visual inspection and years of training. Although it is quite useful, of course, one has to acknowledge its subjective nature that hardly allows for a systematic protocol. In the present work quantifiers based on information theory and wavelet transform are reviewed. The "relative wavelet energy" provides information about the relative energy associated with different frequency bands present in the EEG and their corresponding degree of importance. The "normalized total wavelet entropy" carries information about the degree of order-disorder associated with a multi-frequency signal response. Their application in the analysis and quantification of short duration EEG signals (event-related potentials) and epileptic EEG records are summarized.

  5. Violent Video Games Alter Brain Function in Young Men

    MedlinePlus

    ... the RSNA Annual Meeting Violent Video Games Alter Brain Function in Young Men At A Glance Using ... video games for one week causes changes in brain function. The brain regions affected by violent video ...

  6. The Brain Prize 2014: complex human functions.

    PubMed

    Grigaityte, Kristina; Iacoboni, Marco

    2014-11-01

    Giacomo Rizzolatti, Stanislas Dehaene, and Trevor Robbins were recently awarded the 2014 Grete Lundbeck European Brain Research Prize for their 'pioneering research on higher brain mechanisms underpinning such complex human functions as literacy, numeracy, motivated behavior and social cognition, and for their effort to understand cognitive and behavioral disorders'. Why was their work highlighted? Is there anything that links together these seemingly disparate lines of research?

  7. Prospects for Optogenetic Augmentation of Brain Function.

    PubMed

    Jarvis, Sarah; Schultz, Simon R

    2015-01-01

    The ability to optically control neural activity opens up possibilities for the restoration of normal function following neurological disorders. The temporal precision, spatial resolution, and neuronal specificity that optogenetics offers is unequalled by other available methods, so will it be suitable for not only restoring but also extending brain function? As the first demonstrations of optically "implanted" novel memories emerge, we examine the suitability of optogenetics as a technique for extending neural function. While optogenetics is an effective tool for altering neural activity, the largest impediment for optogenetics in neural augmentation is our systems level understanding of brain function. Furthermore, a number of clinical limitations currently remain as substantial hurdles for the applications proposed. While neurotechnologies for treating brain disorders and interfacing with prosthetics have advanced rapidly in the past few years, partially addressing some of these critical problems, optogenetics is not yet suitable for use in humans. Instead we conclude that for the immediate future, optogenetics is the neurological equivalent of the 3D printer: its flexibility providing an ideal tool for testing and prototyping solutions for treating brain disorders and augmenting brain function.

  8. Prospects for Optogenetic Augmentation of Brain Function

    PubMed Central

    Jarvis, Sarah; Schultz, Simon R.

    2015-01-01

    The ability to optically control neural activity opens up possibilities for the restoration of normal function following neurological disorders. The temporal precision, spatial resolution, and neuronal specificity that optogenetics offers is unequalled by other available methods, so will it be suitable for not only restoring but also extending brain function? As the first demonstrations of optically “implanted” novel memories emerge, we examine the suitability of optogenetics as a technique for extending neural function. While optogenetics is an effective tool for altering neural activity, the largest impediment for optogenetics in neural augmentation is our systems level understanding of brain function. Furthermore, a number of clinical limitations currently remain as substantial hurdles for the applications proposed. While neurotechnologies for treating brain disorders and interfacing with prosthetics have advanced rapidly in the past few years, partially addressing some of these critical problems, optogenetics is not yet suitable for use in humans. Instead we conclude that for the immediate future, optogenetics is the neurological equivalent of the 3D printer: its flexibility providing an ideal tool for testing and prototyping solutions for treating brain disorders and augmenting brain function. PMID:26635547

  9. Imaging visual function of the human brain

    SciTech Connect

    Marg, E.

    1988-10-01

    Imaging of human brain structure and activity with particular reference to visual function is reviewed along with methods of obtaining the data including computed tomographic (CT) scan, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS), and positron emission tomography (PET). The literature is reviewed and the potential for a new understanding of brain visual function is discussed. PET is reviewed from basic physical principles to the most recent visual brain findings with oxygen-15. It is shown that there is a potential for submillimeter localization of visual functions with sequentially different visual stimuli designed for the temporal separation of the responses. Single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT), a less expensive substitute for PET, is also discussed. MRS is covered from basic physical principles to the current state of the art of in vivo biochemical analysis. Future possible clinical applications are discussed. Improved understanding of the functional neural organization of vision and brain will open a window to maps and circuits of human brain function.119 references.

  10. Functional brain network efficiency predicts intelligence.

    PubMed

    Langer, Nicolas; Pedroni, Andreas; Gianotti, Lorena R R; Hänggi, Jürgen; Knoch, Daria; Jäncke, Lutz

    2012-06-01

    The neuronal causes of individual differences in mental abilities such as intelligence are complex and profoundly important. Understanding these abilities has the potential to facilitate their enhancement. The purpose of this study was to identify the functional brain network characteristics and their relation to psychometric intelligence. In particular, we examined whether the functional network exhibits efficient small-world network attributes (high clustering and short path length) and whether these small-world network parameters are associated with intellectual performance. High-density resting state electroencephalography (EEG) was recorded in 74 healthy subjects to analyze graph-theoretical functional network characteristics at an intracortical level. Ravens advanced progressive matrices were used to assess intelligence. We found that the clustering coefficient and path length of the functional network are strongly related to intelligence. Thus, the more intelligent the subjects are the more the functional brain network resembles a small-world network. We further identified the parietal cortex as a main hub of this resting state network as indicated by increased degree centrality that is associated with higher intelligence. Taken together, this is the first study that substantiates the neural efficiency hypothesis as well as the Parieto-Frontal Integration Theory (P-FIT) of intelligence in the context of functional brain network characteristics. These theories are currently the most established intelligence theories in neuroscience. Our findings revealed robust evidence of an efficiently organized resting state functional brain network for highly productive cognitions.

  11. Advantages in functional imaging of the brain

    PubMed Central

    Mier, Walter; Mier, Daniela

    2015-01-01

    As neuronal pathologies cause only minor morphological alterations, molecular imaging techniques are a prerequisite for the study of diseases of the brain. The development of molecular probes that specifically bind biochemical markers and the advances of instrumentation have revolutionized the possibilities to gain insight into the human brain organization and beyond this—visualize structure-function and brain-behavior relationships. The review describes the development and current applications of functional brain imaging techniques with a focus on applications in psychiatry. A historical overview of the development of functional imaging is followed by the portrayal of the principles and applications of positron emission tomography (PET) and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), two key molecular imaging techniques that have revolutionized the ability to image molecular processes in the brain. We conclude that the juxtaposition of PET and fMRI in hybrid PET/MRI scanners enhances the significance of both modalities for research in neurology and psychiatry and might pave the way for a new area of personalized medicine. PMID:26042013

  12. [Localization of language function in the brain].

    PubMed

    Miyashita, Hiroyuki; Sakai, Kuniyoshi L

    2011-12-01

    Since the first report of an aphasic patient by Paul Broca, the localization of brain function has been disputed for 150 years. In lesion studies, double dissociation has been a key concept to show the localization of particular cognitive functions. The advancement of non-invasive brain imaging methods enables us to investigate the brain activities under well-controlled conditions, further promoting the studies on the localization of the cognitive functions, including language function. Brain imaging studies, together with subtraction and correlation analyses, have accumulated evidence that syntax, phonology, and sentence comprehension are separately processed by modules in different cortical regions. More specifically, it has been clarified that the module for syntax localizes in the left lateral premotor cortex and the opercular/triangular parts of the left inferior frontal gyrus. This modular structure further suggests that aphasia is interpreted as deficits in either syntactic or phonological processing. Therefore, the classical model of contrasting speech production and comprehension should be updated. According to theoretical linguistics, on the other hand, the recursive computation of syntactic structures is an essential feature of human language faculty. One direction of research would be to contrast human beings and animals for the abilities of processing symbolic sequences. Another direction is to clarify that the human brain is indeed specialized in language processing, which can be revealed by well-controlled language tasks and functional imaging techniques. Here we will review recent studies that demonstrate the existence of grammar center in the left frontal cortex. The future studies in the neuroscience of language will eventually elucidate the cortical localization of language function in a more precise way, i.e., what is really computed in the human brain.

  13. Toward discovery science of human brain function

    PubMed Central

    Biswal, Bharat B.; Mennes, Maarten; Zuo, Xi-Nian; Gohel, Suril; Kelly, Clare; Smith, Steve M.; Beckmann, Christian F.; Adelstein, Jonathan S.; Buckner, Randy L.; Colcombe, Stan; Dogonowski, Anne-Marie; Ernst, Monique; Fair, Damien; Hampson, Michelle; Hoptman, Matthew J.; Hyde, James S.; Kiviniemi, Vesa J.; Kötter, Rolf; Li, Shi-Jiang; Lin, Ching-Po; Lowe, Mark J.; Mackay, Clare; Madden, David J.; Madsen, Kristoffer H.; Margulies, Daniel S.; Mayberg, Helen S.; McMahon, Katie; Monk, Christopher S.; Mostofsky, Stewart H.; Nagel, Bonnie J.; Pekar, James J.; Peltier, Scott J.; Petersen, Steven E.; Riedl, Valentin; Rombouts, Serge A. R. B.; Rypma, Bart; Schlaggar, Bradley L.; Schmidt, Sein; Seidler, Rachael D.; Siegle, Greg J.; Sorg, Christian; Teng, Gao-Jun; Veijola, Juha; Villringer, Arno; Walter, Martin; Wang, Lihong; Weng, Xu-Chu; Whitfield-Gabrieli, Susan; Williamson, Peter; Windischberger, Christian; Zang, Yu-Feng; Zhang, Hong-Ying; Castellanos, F. Xavier; Milham, Michael P.

    2010-01-01

    Although it is being successfully implemented for exploration of the genome, discovery science has eluded the functional neuroimaging community. The core challenge remains the development of common paradigms for interrogating the myriad functional systems in the brain without the constraints of a priori hypotheses. Resting-state functional MRI (R-fMRI) constitutes a candidate approach capable of addressing this challenge. Imaging the brain during rest reveals large-amplitude spontaneous low-frequency (<0.1 Hz) fluctuations in the fMRI signal that are temporally correlated across functionally related areas. Referred to as functional connectivity, these correlations yield detailed maps of complex neural systems, collectively constituting an individual's “functional connectome.” Reproducibility across datasets and individuals suggests the functional connectome has a common architecture, yet each individual's functional connectome exhibits unique features, with stable, meaningful interindividual differences in connectivity patterns and strengths. Comprehensive mapping of the functional connectome, and its subsequent exploitation to discern genetic influences and brain–behavior relationships, will require multicenter collaborative datasets. Here we initiate this endeavor by gathering R-fMRI data from 1,414 volunteers collected independently at 35 international centers. We demonstrate a universal architecture of positive and negative functional connections, as well as consistent loci of inter-individual variability. Age and sex emerged as significant determinants. These results demonstrate that independent R-fMRI datasets can be aggregated and shared. High-throughput R-fMRI can provide quantitative phenotypes for molecular genetic studies and biomarkers of developmental and pathological processes in the brain. To initiate discovery science of brain function, the 1000 Functional Connectomes Project dataset is freely accessible at www.nitrc.org/projects/fcon_1000

  14. High-fat diet feeding alters olfactory-, social-, and reward-related behaviors of mice independent of obesity.

    PubMed

    Takase, Kenkichi; Tsuneoka, Yousuke; Oda, Satoko; Kuroda, Masaru; Funato, Hiromasa

    2016-04-01

    High-fat diet (HFD) consumption causes obesity, which is associated with well-known increased health risks. Moreover, obesity has been associated with altered sensorimotor and emotional behaviors of humans and mice. This study attempted to dissociate the influence of HFD-induced obesity on behaviors from the influence of HFD consumption itself. C57BL male mice were randomly allocated to a low-fat diet (LFD) group, an HFD-induced obesity (DIO) group, or a pair-fed HFD-feeding nonobese (HFD) group. A comprehensive behavioral test battery was performed on all three groups to assess sensorimotor functions, anxiety- and depression-like behaviors, reward-related behaviors, social behaviors, and learning/memory functions. Both the DIO and HFD groups exhibited disturbed olfaction, blunted ethanol preference, and enhanced social interactions. The DIO group exhibited blunted sucrose preference, shorter latency before falling off during the rotarod test, and a lower response to mechanical stimuli. The HFD-fed nonobese mice showed altered behaviors related to olfaction, social interactions, and rewards that were similar to those of the DIO mice. This finding suggests that HFD consumption alters a variety of behaviors independent of obesity. © 2016 The Obesity Society.

  15. Reward-Related Behavioral Paradigms for Addiction Research in the Mouse: Performance of Common Inbred Strains

    PubMed Central

    Feyder, Michael; Brigman, Jonathan L.; Crombag, Hans S.; Saksida, Lisa M.; Bussey, Timothy J.; Holmes, Andrew

    2011-01-01

    The mouse has emerged as a uniquely valuable species for studying the molecular and genetic basis of complex behaviors and modeling neuropsychiatric disease states. While valid and reliable preclinical assays for reward-related behaviors are critical to understanding addiction-related processes, and various behavioral procedures have been developed and characterized in rats and primates, there have been relatively few studies using operant-based addiction-relevant behavioral paradigms in the mouse. Here we describe the performance of the C57BL/6J inbred mouse strain on three major reward-related paradigms, and replicate the same procedures in two other commonly used inbred strains (DBA/2J, BALB/cJ). We examined Pavlovian-instrumental transfer (PIT) by measuring the ability of an auditory cue associated with food reward to promote an instrumental (lever press) response. In a separate experiment, we assessed the acquisition and extinction of a simple stimulus-reward instrumental behavior on a touchscreen-based task. Reinstatement of this behavior was then examined following either continuous exposure to cues (conditioned reinforcers, CRs) associated with reward, brief reward and CR exposure, or brief reward exposure followed by continuous CR exposure. The third paradigm examined sensitivity of an instrumental (lever press) response to devaluation of food reward (a probe for outcome insensitive, habitual behavior) by repeated pairing with malaise. Results showed that C57BL/6J mice displayed robust PIT, as well as clear extinction and reinstatement, but were insensitive to reinforcer devaluation. DBA/2J mice showed good PIT and (rewarded) reinstatement, but were slow to extinguish and did not show reinforcer devaluation or significant CR-reinstatement. BALB/cJ mice also displayed good PIT, extinction and reinstatement, and retained instrumental responding following devaluation, but, unlike the other strains, demonstrated reduced Pavlovian approach behavior (food

  16. Reward-related behavioral paradigms for addiction research in the mouse: performance of common inbred strains.

    PubMed

    Lederle, Lauren; Weber, Susanna; Wright, Tara; Feyder, Michael; Brigman, Jonathan L; Crombag, Hans S; Saksida, Lisa M; Bussey, Timothy J; Holmes, Andrew

    2011-01-10

    The mouse has emerged as a uniquely valuable species for studying the molecular and genetic basis of complex behaviors and modeling neuropsychiatric disease states. While valid and reliable preclinical assays for reward-related behaviors are critical to understanding addiction-related processes, and various behavioral procedures have been developed and characterized in rats and primates, there have been relatively few studies using operant-based addiction-relevant behavioral paradigms in the mouse. Here we describe the performance of the C57BL/6J inbred mouse strain on three major reward-related paradigms, and replicate the same procedures in two other commonly used inbred strains (DBA/2J, BALB/cJ). We examined Pavlovian-instrumental transfer (PIT) by measuring the ability of an auditory cue associated with food reward to promote an instrumental (lever press) response. In a separate experiment, we assessed the acquisition and extinction of a simple stimulus-reward instrumental behavior on a touch screen based task. Reinstatement of this behavior was then examined following either continuous exposure to cues (conditioned reinforcers, CRs) associated with reward, brief reward and CR exposure, or brief reward exposure followed by continuous CR exposure. The third paradigm examined sensitivity of an instrumental (lever press) response to devaluation of food reward (a probe for outcome insensitive, habitual behavior) by repeated pairing with malaise. Results showed that C57BL/6J mice displayed robust PIT, as well as clear extinction and reinstatement, but were insensitive to reinforcer devaluation. DBA/2J mice showed good PIT and (rewarded) reinstatement, but were slow to extinguish and did not show reinforcer devaluation or significant CR-reinstatement. BALB/cJ mice also displayed good PIT, extinction and reinstatement, and retained instrumental responding following devaluation, but, unlike the other strains, demonstrated reduced Pavlovian approach behavior (food

  17. Integrating Retinoic Acid Signaling with Brain Function

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Luo, Tuanlian; Wagner, Elisabeth; Drager, Ursula C.

    2009-01-01

    The vitamin A derivative retinoic acid (RA) regulates the transcription of about a 6th of the human genome. Compelling evidence indicates a role of RA in cognitive activities, but its integration with the molecular mechanisms of higher brain functions is not known. Here we describe the properties of RA signaling in the mouse, which point to…

  18. Precision Functional Mapping of Individual Human Brains.

    PubMed

    Gordon, Evan M; Laumann, Timothy O; Gilmore, Adrian W; Newbold, Dillan J; Greene, Deanna J; Berg, Jeffrey J; Ortega, Mario; Hoyt-Drazen, Catherine; Gratton, Caterina; Sun, Haoxin; Hampton, Jacqueline M; Coalson, Rebecca S; Nguyen, Annie L; McDermott, Kathleen B; Shimony, Joshua S; Snyder, Abraham Z; Schlaggar, Bradley L; Petersen, Steven E; Nelson, Steven M; Dosenbach, Nico U F

    2017-08-16

    Human functional MRI (fMRI) research primarily focuses on analyzing data averaged across groups, which limits the detail, specificity, and clinical utility of fMRI resting-state functional connectivity (RSFC) and task-activation maps. To push our understanding of functional brain organization to the level of individual humans, we assembled a novel MRI dataset containing 5 hr of RSFC data, 6 hr of task fMRI, multiple structural MRIs, and neuropsychological tests from each of ten adults. Using these data, we generated ten high-fidelity, individual-specific functional connectomes. This individual-connectome approach revealed several new types of spatial and organizational variability in brain networks, including unique network features and topologies that corresponded with structural and task-derived brain features. We are releasing this highly sampled, individual-focused dataset as a resource for neuroscientists, and we propose precision individual connectomics as a model for future work examining the organization of healthy and diseased individual human brains. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Integrating Retinoic Acid Signaling with Brain Function

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Luo, Tuanlian; Wagner, Elisabeth; Drager, Ursula C.

    2009-01-01

    The vitamin A derivative retinoic acid (RA) regulates the transcription of about a 6th of the human genome. Compelling evidence indicates a role of RA in cognitive activities, but its integration with the molecular mechanisms of higher brain functions is not known. Here we describe the properties of RA signaling in the mouse, which point to…

  20. Classroom Seating and Functional Brain Asymmetry

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gur, Raquel E.; And Others

    1975-01-01

    This study examined the relationship between functional brain assymetry, as measured by the characteristic direction of eye movements in response to face-to-face questioning, and sitting on the left or right side of a classroom. Results are congruent with other findings comparing right and left movers. (Author/BJG)

  1. DHA Effects in Brain Development and Function.

    PubMed

    Lauritzen, Lotte; Brambilla, Paolo; Mazzocchi, Alessandra; Harsløf, Laurine B S; Ciappolino, Valentina; Agostoni, Carlo

    2016-01-04

    Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) is a structural constituent of membranes specifically in the central nervous system. Its accumulation in the fetal brain takes place mainly during the last trimester of pregnancy and continues at very high rates up to the end of the second year of life. Since the endogenous formation of DHA seems to be relatively low, DHA intake may contribute to optimal conditions for brain development. We performed a narrative review on research on the associations between DHA levels and brain development and function throughout the lifespan. Data from cell and animal studies justify the indication of DHA in relation to brain function for neuronal cell growth and differentiation as well as in relation to neuronal signaling. Most data from human studies concern the contribution of DHA to optimal visual acuity development. Accumulating data indicate that DHA may have effects on the brain in infancy, and recent studies indicate that the effect of DHA may depend on gender and genotype of genes involved in the endogenous synthesis of DHA. While DHA levels may affect early development, potential effects are also increasingly recognized during childhood and adult life, suggesting a role of DHA in cognitive decline and in relation to major psychiatric disorders.

  2. DHA Effects in Brain Development and Function

    PubMed Central

    Lauritzen, Lotte; Brambilla, Paolo; Mazzocchi, Alessandra; Harsløf, Laurine B. S.; Ciappolino, Valentina; Agostoni, Carlo

    2016-01-01

    Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) is a structural constituent of membranes specifically in the central nervous system. Its accumulation in the fetal brain takes place mainly during the last trimester of pregnancy and continues at very high rates up to the end of the second year of life. Since the endogenous formation of DHA seems to be relatively low, DHA intake may contribute to optimal conditions for brain development. We performed a narrative review on research on the associations between DHA levels and brain development and function throughout the lifespan. Data from cell and animal studies justify the indication of DHA in relation to brain function for neuronal cell growth and differentiation as well as in relation to neuronal signaling. Most data from human studies concern the contribution of DHA to optimal visual acuity development. Accumulating data indicate that DHA may have effects on the brain in infancy, and recent studies indicate that the effect of DHA may depend on gender and genotype of genes involved in the endogenous synthesis of DHA. While DHA levels may affect early development, potential effects are also increasingly recognized during childhood and adult life, suggesting a role of DHA in cognitive decline and in relation to major psychiatric disorders. PMID:26742060

  3. Reward-related attentional bias and adolescent substance use: a prognostic relationship?

    PubMed

    van Hemel-Ruiter, Madelon E; de Jong, Peter J; Ostafin, Brian D; Oldehinkel, Albertine J

    2015-01-01

    Current cognitive-motivational addiction theories propose that prioritizing appetitive, reward-related information (attentional bias) plays a vital role in substance abuse behavior. Previous cross-sectional research has shown that adolescent substance use is related to reward-related attentional biases. The present study was designed to extend these findings by testing whether these reward biases have predictive value for adolescent substance use at three-year follow-up. Participants (N = 657, mean age = 16.2 yrs at baseline) were a sub-sample of Tracking Adolescents' Individual Lives Survey (TRAILS), a large longitudinal community cohort study. We used a spatial orienting task as a behavioral index of appetitive-related attentional processes at baseline and a substance use questionnaire at both baseline and three years follow-up. Bivariate correlational analyses showed that enhanced attentional engagement with cues that predicted potential reward and nonpunishment was positively associated with substance use (alcohol, tobacco, and cannabis) three years later. However, reward bias was not predictive of changes in substance use. A post-hoc analysis in a selection of adolescents who started using illicit drugs (other than cannabis) in the follow-up period demonstrated that stronger baseline attentional engagement toward cues of nonpunishment was related to a higher level of illicit drug use three years later. The finding that reward bias was not predictive for the increase in substance use in adolescents who already started using substances at baseline, but did show prognostic value in adolescents who initiated drug use in between baseline and follow-up suggests that appetitive bias might be especially important in the initiation stages of adolescent substance use.

  4. Reward-Related Attentional Bias and Adolescent Substance Use: A Prognostic Relationship?

    PubMed Central

    van Hemel-Ruiter, Madelon E.; de Jong, Peter J.; Ostafin, Brian D.; Oldehinkel, Albertine J.

    2015-01-01

    Current cognitive-motivational addiction theories propose that prioritizing appetitive, reward-related information (attentional bias) plays a vital role in substance abuse behavior. Previous cross-sectional research has shown that adolescent substance use is related to reward-related attentional biases. The present study was designed to extend these findings by testing whether these reward biases have predictive value for adolescent substance use at three-year follow-up. Participants (N = 657, mean age = 16.2 yrs at baseline) were a sub-sample of Tracking Adolescents’ Individual Lives Survey (TRAILS), a large longitudinal community cohort study. We used a spatial orienting task as a behavioral index of appetitive-related attentional processes at baseline and a substance use questionnaire at both baseline and three years follow-up. Bivariate correlational analyses showed that enhanced attentional engagement with cues that predicted potential reward and nonpunishment was positively associated with substance use (alcohol, tobacco, and cannabis) three years later. However, reward bias was not predictive of changes in substance use. A post-hoc analysis in a selection of adolescents who started using illicit drugs (other than cannabis) in the follow-up period demonstrated that stronger baseline attentional engagement toward cues of nonpunishment was related to a higher level of illicit drug use three years later. The finding that reward bias was not predictive for the increase in substance use in adolescents who already started using substances at baseline, but did show prognostic value in adolescents who initiated drug use in between baseline and follow-up suggests that appetitive bias might be especially important in the initiation stages of adolescent substance use. PMID:25816295

  5. Reward-Related Decision-Making Deficits and Elevated Impulsivity Among MDMA and Other Drug Users

    PubMed Central

    Hanson, Karen L.; Luciana, Monica; Sullwold, Kristin

    2008-01-01

    Background The recreational drug, MDMA (3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine; ‘Ecstasy’), is a synthetic amphetamine derivative and a serotonin neurotoxin. MDMA use is associated with cognitive dysfunction and impulsivity, but since polydrug abuse is common among users it is difficult to attribute these problems specifically to MDMA. Moreover, few studies have examined reward-related cognitive processes. Our aim was to examine reward-related decision-making and impulsivity among MDMA users while controlling for polydrug use via appropriate comparison groups. Methods We examined decision-making (Iowa Gambling Task; IGT; Bechara et al., 1994), self-reported impulsivity (Multidimensional Personality Questionnaire – Brief Form [Constraint subscale]; Barratt Impulsiveness Scale; Zuckerman Sensation Seeking Scale), and drug use among 22 abstinent MDMA users, 30 other drug users, and 29 healthy non-drug controls. Results MDMA and other drug users showed comparable patterns of decision-making and impulsivity. However, both drug groups demonstrated poorer IGT performance and elevated self-reported impulsivity relative to controls. Poorer decision-making was related to heavier drug use in the past year, heavier weekly alcohol use, and meeting lifetime substance use disorder (SUD) criteria for more drug classes. Elevated impulsivity was associated with heavier drug use, heavier weekly alcohol use, more lifetime SUDs, and higher self-reported depression levels. Conclusions These findings contradict the idea that MDMA is specifically associated with deficient decision-making. Drug users, in general, may be at risk for decision-making deficits and elevated impulsivity. Such behaviors may represent trait factors that lead to the initiation of drug and alcohol use, and/or they may represent behavior patterns that are exacerbated by extensive use. PMID:18384979

  6. Structure and function of complex brain networks

    PubMed Central

    Sporns, Olaf

    2013-01-01

    An increasing number of theoretical and empirical studies approach the function of the human brain from a network perspective. The analysis of brain networks is made feasible by the development of new imaging acquisition methods as well as new tools from graph theory and dynamical systems. This review surveys some of these methodological advances and summarizes recent findings on the architecture of structural and functional brain networks. Studies of the structural connectome reveal several modules or network communities that are interlinked by hub regions mediating communication processes between modules. Recent network analyses have shown that network hubs form a densely linked collective called a “rich club,” centrally positioned for attracting and dispersing signal traffic. In parallel, recordings of resting and task-evoked neural activity have revealed distinct resting-state networks that contribute to functions in distinct cognitive domains. Network methods are increasingly applied in a clinical context, and their promise for elucidating neural substrates of brain and mental disorders is discussed. PMID:24174898

  7. Sialylation regulates brain structure and function

    PubMed Central

    Yoo, Seung-Wan; Motari, Mary G.; Susuki, Keiichiro; Prendergast, Jillian; Mountney, Andrea; Hurtado, Andres; Schnaar, Ronald L.

    2015-01-01

    Every cell expresses a molecularly diverse surface glycan coat (glycocalyx) comprising its interface with its cellular environment. In vertebrates, the terminal sugars of the glycocalyx are often sialic acids, 9-carbon backbone anionic sugars implicated in intermolecular and intercellular interactions. The vertebrate brain is particularly enriched in sialic acid-containing glycolipids termed gangliosides. Human congenital disorders of ganglioside biosynthesis result in paraplegia, epilepsy, and intellectual disability. To better understand sialoglycan functions in the nervous system, we studied brain anatomy, histology, biochemistry, and behavior in mice with engineered mutations in St3gal2 and St3gal3, sialyltransferase genes responsible for terminal sialylation of gangliosides and some glycoproteins. St3gal2/3 double-null mice displayed dysmyelination marked by a 40% reduction in major myelin proteins, 30% fewer myelinated axons, a 33% decrease in myelin thickness, and molecular disruptions at nodes of Ranvier. In part, these changes may be due to dysregulation of ganglioside-mediated oligodendroglial precursor cell proliferation. Neuronal markers were also reduced up to 40%, and hippocampal neurons had smaller dendritic arbors. Young adult St3gal2/3 double-null mice displayed impaired motor coordination, disturbed gait, and profound cognitive disability. Comparisons among sialyltransferase mutant mice provide insights into the functional roles of brain gangliosides and sialoglycoproteins consistent with related human congenital disorders.—Yoo, S.-W., Motari, M. G., Susuki, K., Prendergast, J., Mountney, A., Hurtado, A., Schnaar, R. L. Sialylation regulates brain structure and function. PMID:25846372

  8. Electromagnetic inverse applications for functional brain imaging

    SciTech Connect

    Wood, C.C.

    1997-10-01

    This is the final report of a one-year, Laboratory Directed Research and Development (LDRD) project at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). This project addresses an important mathematical and computational problem in functional brain imaging, namely the electromagnetic {open_quotes}inverse problem.{close_quotes} Electromagnetic brain imaging techniques, magnetoencephalography (MEG) and electroencephalography (EEG), are based on measurements of electrical potentials and magnetic fields at hundreds of locations outside the human head. The inverse problem is the estimation of the locations, magnitudes, and time-sources of electrical currents in the brain from surface measurements. This project extends recent progress on the inverse problem by combining the use of anatomical constraints derived from magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) with Bayesian and other novel algorithmic approaches. The results suggest that we can achieve significant improvements in the accuracy and robustness of inverse solutions by these two approaches.

  9. Homological scaffolds of brain functional networks

    PubMed Central

    Petri, G.; Expert, P.; Turkheimer, F.; Carhart-Harris, R.; Nutt, D.; Hellyer, P. J.; Vaccarino, F.

    2014-01-01

    Networks, as efficient representations of complex systems, have appealed to scientists for a long time and now permeate many areas of science, including neuroimaging (Bullmore and Sporns 2009 Nat. Rev. Neurosci. 10, 186–198. (doi:10.1038/nrn2618)). Traditionally, the structure of complex networks has been studied through their statistical properties and metrics concerned with node and link properties, e.g. degree-distribution, node centrality and modularity. Here, we study the characteristics of functional brain networks at the mesoscopic level from a novel perspective that highlights the role of inhomogeneities in the fabric of functional connections. This can be done by focusing on the features of a set of topological objects—homological cycles—associated with the weighted functional network. We leverage the detected topological information to define the homological scaffolds, a new set of objects designed to represent compactly the homological features of the correlation network and simultaneously make their homological properties amenable to networks theoretical methods. As a proof of principle, we apply these tools to compare resting-state functional brain activity in 15 healthy volunteers after intravenous infusion of placebo and psilocybin—the main psychoactive component of magic mushrooms. The results show that the homological structure of the brain's functional patterns undergoes a dramatic change post-psilocybin, characterized by the appearance of many transient structures of low stability and of a small number of persistent ones that are not observed in the case of placebo. PMID:25401177

  10. Homological scaffolds of brain functional networks.

    PubMed

    Petri, G; Expert, P; Turkheimer, F; Carhart-Harris, R; Nutt, D; Hellyer, P J; Vaccarino, F

    2014-12-06

    Networks, as efficient representations of complex systems, have appealed to scientists for a long time and now permeate many areas of science, including neuroimaging (Bullmore and Sporns 2009 Nat. Rev. Neurosci. 10, 186-198. (doi:10.1038/nrn2618)). Traditionally, the structure of complex networks has been studied through their statistical properties and metrics concerned with node and link properties, e.g. degree-distribution, node centrality and modularity. Here, we study the characteristics of functional brain networks at the mesoscopic level from a novel perspective that highlights the role of inhomogeneities in the fabric of functional connections. This can be done by focusing on the features of a set of topological objects-homological cycles-associated with the weighted functional network. We leverage the detected topological information to define the homological scaffolds, a new set of objects designed to represent compactly the homological features of the correlation network and simultaneously make their homological properties amenable to networks theoretical methods. As a proof of principle,we apply these tools to compare resting state functional brain activity in 15 healthy volunteers after intravenous infusion of placebo and psilocybin-the main psychoactive component of magic mushrooms. The results show that the homological structure of the brain's functional patterns undergoes a dramatic change post-psilocybin, characterized by the appearance of many transient structures of low stability and of a small number of persistent ones that are not observed in the case of placebo.

  11. Electroencephalographic imaging of higher brain function

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gevins, A.; Smith, M. E.; McEvoy, L. K.; Leong, H.; Le, J.

    1999-01-01

    High temporal resolution is necessary to resolve the rapidly changing patterns of brain activity that underlie mental function. Electroencephalography (EEG) provides temporal resolution in the millisecond range. However, traditional EEG technology and practice provide insufficient spatial detail to identify relationships between brain electrical events and structures and functions visualized by magnetic resonance imaging or positron emission tomography. Recent advances help to overcome this problem by recording EEGs from more electrodes, by registering EEG data with anatomical images, and by correcting the distortion caused by volume conduction of EEG signals through the skull and scalp. In addition, statistical measurements of sub-second interdependences between EEG time-series recorded from different locations can help to generate hypotheses about the instantaneous functional networks that form between different cortical regions during perception, thought and action. Example applications are presented from studies of language, attention and working memory. Along with its unique ability to monitor brain function as people perform everyday activities in the real world, these advances make modern EEG an invaluable complement to other functional neuroimaging modalities.

  12. Electroencephalographic imaging of higher brain function

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gevins, A.; Smith, M. E.; McEvoy, L. K.; Leong, H.; Le, J.

    1999-01-01

    High temporal resolution is necessary to resolve the rapidly changing patterns of brain activity that underlie mental function. Electroencephalography (EEG) provides temporal resolution in the millisecond range. However, traditional EEG technology and practice provide insufficient spatial detail to identify relationships between brain electrical events and structures and functions visualized by magnetic resonance imaging or positron emission tomography. Recent advances help to overcome this problem by recording EEGs from more electrodes, by registering EEG data with anatomical images, and by correcting the distortion caused by volume conduction of EEG signals through the skull and scalp. In addition, statistical measurements of sub-second interdependences between EEG time-series recorded from different locations can help to generate hypotheses about the instantaneous functional networks that form between different cortical regions during perception, thought and action. Example applications are presented from studies of language, attention and working memory. Along with its unique ability to monitor brain function as people perform everyday activities in the real world, these advances make modern EEG an invaluable complement to other functional neuroimaging modalities.

  13. Nicotine increases brain functional network efficiency.

    PubMed

    Wylie, Korey P; Rojas, Donald C; Tanabe, Jody; Martin, Laura F; Tregellas, Jason R

    2012-10-15

    Despite the use of cholinergic therapies in Alzheimer's disease and the development of cholinergic strategies for schizophrenia, relatively little is known about how the system modulates the connectivity and structure of large-scale brain networks. To better understand how nicotinic cholinergic systems alter these networks, this study examined the effects of nicotine on measures of whole-brain network communication efficiency. Resting state fMRI was acquired from fifteen healthy subjects before and after the application of nicotine or placebo transdermal patches in a single blind, crossover design. Data, which were previously examined for default network activity, were analyzed with network topology techniques to measure changes in the communication efficiency of whole-brain networks. Nicotine significantly increased local efficiency, a parameter that estimates the network's tolerance to local errors in communication. Nicotine also significantly enhanced the regional efficiency of limbic and paralimbic areas of the brain, areas which are especially altered in diseases such as Alzheimer's disease and schizophrenia. These changes in network topology may be one mechanism by which cholinergic therapies improve brain function. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  14. Reward-related cortical inputs define a large striatal region in primates that interface with associative cortical connections, providing a substrate for incentive-based learning.

    PubMed

    Haber, Suzanne N; Kim, Ki-Sok; Mailly, Philippe; Calzavara, Roberta

    2006-08-09

    The anterior cingulate and orbital cortices and the ventral striatum process different aspects of reward evaluation, whereas the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and the dorsal striatum are involved in cognitive function. Collectively, these areas are critical to decision making. We mapped the striatal area that receives information about reward evaluation. We also explored the extent to which terminals from reward-related cortical areas converge in the striatum with those from cognitive regions. Using three-dimensional-rendered reconstructions of corticostriatal projection fields along with two-dimensional chartings, we demonstrate the reward and cognitive territories in the primate striatum and show the convergence between these cortical inputs. The results show two labeling patterns: a focal projection field that consists of densely distributed terminal patches, and a diffuse projection consisting of clusters of fibers, extending throughout a wide area of the striatum. Together, these projection fields demonstrate a remarkably large, rostral, reward-related striatal territory that reaches into the dorsal striatum. Fibers from different reward-processing and cognitive cortical areas occupy both separate and converging territories. Furthermore, the diffuse projection may serve a separate integrative function by broadly disseminating general cortical activity. These findings show that the rostral striatum is in a unique position to mediate different aspects of incentive learning. Furthermore, areas of convergence may be particularly sensitive to dopamine modulation during decision making and habit formation.

  15. Robust Transient Dynamics and Brain Functions

    PubMed Central

    Rabinovich, Mikhail I.; Varona, Pablo

    2011-01-01

    In the last few decades several concepts of dynamical systems theory (DST) have guided psychologists, cognitive scientists, and neuroscientists to rethink about sensory motor behavior and embodied cognition. A critical step in the progress of DST application to the brain (supported by modern methods of brain imaging and multi-electrode recording techniques) has been the transfer of its initial success in motor behavior to mental function, i.e., perception, emotion, and cognition. Open questions from research in genetics, ecology, brain sciences, etc., have changed DST itself and lead to the discovery of a new dynamical phenomenon, i.e., reproducible and robust transients that are at the same time sensitive to informational signals. The goal of this review is to describe a new mathematical framework – heteroclinic sequential dynamics – to understand self-organized activity in the brain that can explain certain aspects of robust itinerant behavior. Specifically, we discuss a hierarchy of coarse-grain models of mental dynamics in the form of kinetic equations of modes. These modes compete for resources at three levels: (i) within the same modality, (ii) among different modalities from the same family (like perception), and (iii) among modalities from different families (like emotion and cognition). The analysis of the conditions for robustness, i.e., the structural stability of transient (sequential) dynamics, give us the possibility to explain phenomena like the finite capacity of our sequential working memory – a vital cognitive function –, and to find specific dynamical signatures – different kinds of instabilities – of several brain functions and mental diseases. PMID:21716642

  16. Structural and functional brain imaging in schizophrenia.

    PubMed Central

    Cleghorn, J M; Zipursky, R B; List, S J

    1991-01-01

    We present an evaluation of the contribution of structural and functional brain imaging to our understanding of schizophrenia. Methodological influences on the validity of the data generated by these new technologies include problems with measurement and clinical and anatomic heterogeneity. These considerations greatly affect the interpretation of the data generated by these technologies. Work in these fields to date, however, has produced strong evidence which suggests that schizophrenia is a disease which involves abnormalities in the structure and function of many brain areas. Structural brain imaging studies of schizophrenia using computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) are reviewed and their contribution to current theories of the pathogenesis of schizophrenia are discussed. Positron emission tomography (PET) studies of brain metabolic activity and dopamine receptor binding in schizophrenia are summarized and the critical questions raised by these studies are outlined. Future studies in these fields have the potential to yield critical insights into the pathophysiology of schizophrenia; new directions for studies of schizophrenia using these technologies are identified. PMID:1911736

  17. Peroxisomes in brain development and function.

    PubMed

    Berger, Johannes; Dorninger, Fabian; Forss-Petter, Sonja; Kunze, Markus

    2016-05-01

    Peroxisomes contain numerous enzymatic activities that are important for mammalian physiology. Patients lacking either all peroxisomal functions or a single enzyme or transporter function typically develop severe neurological deficits, which originate from aberrant development of the brain, demyelination and loss of axonal integrity, neuroinflammation or other neurodegenerative processes. Whilst correlating peroxisomal properties with a compilation of pathologies observed in human patients and mouse models lacking all or individual peroxisomal functions, we discuss the importance of peroxisomal metabolites and tissue- and cell type-specific contributions to the observed brain pathologies. This enables us to deconstruct the local and systemic contribution of individual metabolic pathways to specific brain functions. We also review the recently discovered variability of pathological symptoms in cases with unexpectedly mild presentation of peroxisome biogenesis disorders. Finally, we explore the emerging evidence linking peroxisomes to more common neurological disorders such as Alzheimer's disease, autism and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Dynamic geometry, brain function modeling, and consciousness.

    PubMed

    Roy, Sisir; Llinás, Rodolfo

    2008-01-01

    Pellionisz and Llinás proposed, years ago, a geometric interpretation towards understanding brain function. This interpretation assumes that the relation between the brain and the external world is determined by the ability of the central nervous system (CNS) to construct an internal model of the external world using an interactive geometrical relationship between sensory and motor expression. This approach opened new vistas not only in brain research but also in understanding the foundations of geometry itself. The approach named tensor network theory is sufficiently rich to allow specific computational modeling and addressed the issue of prediction, based on Taylor series expansion properties of the system, at the neuronal level, as a basic property of brain function. It was actually proposed that the evolutionary realm is the backbone for the development of an internal functional space that, while being purely representational, can interact successfully with the totally different world of the so-called "external reality". Now if the internal space or functional space is endowed with stochastic metric tensor properties, then there will be a dynamic correspondence between events in the external world and their specification in the internal space. We shall call this dynamic geometry since the minimal time resolution of the brain (10-15 ms), associated with 40 Hz oscillations of neurons and their network dynamics, is considered to be responsible for recognizing external events and generating the concept of simultaneity. The stochastic metric tensor in dynamic geometry can be written as five-dimensional space-time where the fifth dimension is a probability space as well as a metric space. This extra dimension is considered an imbedded degree of freedom. It is worth noticing that the above-mentioned 40 Hz oscillation is present both in awake and dream states where the central difference is the inability of phase resetting in the latter. This framework of dynamic

  19. Functional brain imaging in respiratory medicine.

    PubMed

    Pattinson, Kyle

    2015-06-01

    Discordance of clinical symptoms with markers of disease severity remains a conundrum in a variety of respiratory conditions. The breathlessness of chronic lung disease correlates poorly with spirometry, yet is a better predictor of mortality. In chronic cough, symptoms are often evident without clear physical cause. In asthma, the terms 'over perceivers' and 'under perceivers' are common parlance. In all these examples, aberrant brain mechanisms may explain the mismatch between symptoms and pathology. Functional MRI is a non-invasive method of measuring brain function. It has recently become significantly advanced enough to be useful in clinical research and to address these potential mechanisms. This article explains how FMRI works, current understanding from FMRI in breathlessness, cough and asthma and suggests possibilities for future research.

  20. Functionality predictors in acquired brain damage.

    PubMed

    Huertas Hoyas, E; Pedrero Pérez, E J; Águila Maturana, A M; García López-Alberca, S; González Alted, C

    2015-01-01

    Most individuals who have survived an acquired brain injury present consequences affecting the sensorimotor, cognitive, affective or behavioural components. These deficits affect the proper performance of daily living activities. The aim of this study is to identify functional differences between individuals with unilateral acquired brain injury using functional independence, capacity, and performance of daily activities. Descriptive cross-sectional design with a sample of 58 people, with right-sided injury (n=14 TBI; n=15 stroke) or left-sided injury (n = 14 TBI, n = 15 stroke), right handed, and with a mean age of 47 years and time since onset of 4 ± 3.65 years. The functional assessment/functional independence measure (FIM/FAM) and the International Classification of Functioning (ICF) were used for the study. The data showed significant differences (P<.000), and a large size effect (dr=0.78) in the cross-sectional estimates, and point to fewer restrictions for patients with a lesion on their right side. The major differences were in the variables 'speaking' and 'receiving spoken messages' (ICF variables), and 'Expression', 'Writing' and 'intelligible speech' (FIM/FAM variables). In the linear regression analysis, the results showed that only 4 FIM/FAM variables, taken together, predict 44% of the ICF variance, which measures the ability of the individual, and up to 52% of the ICF, which measures the individual's performance. Gait alone predicts a 28% of the variance. It seems that individuals with acquired brain injury in the left hemisphere display important differences regarding functional and communication variables. The motor aspects are an important prognostic factor in functional rehabilitation. Copyright © 2013 Sociedad Española de Neurología. Published by Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved.

  1. When "altering brain function" becomes "mind control".

    PubMed

    Koivuniemi, Andrew; Otto, Kevin

    2014-01-01

    Functional neurosurgery has seen a resurgence of interest in surgical treatments for psychiatric illness. Deep brain stimulation (DBS) technology is the preferred tool in the current wave of clinical experiments because it allows clinicians to directly alter the functions of targeted brain regions, in a reversible manner, with the intent of correcting diseases of the mind, such as depression, addiction, anorexia nervosa, dementia, and obsessive compulsive disorder. These promising treatments raise a critical philosophical and humanitarian question. "Under what conditions does 'altering brain function' qualify as 'mind control'?" In order to answer this question one needs a definition of mind control. To this end, we reviewed the relevant philosophical, ethical, and neurosurgical literature in order to create a set of criteria for what constitutes mind control in the context of DBS. We also outline clinical implications of these criteria. Finally, we demonstrate the relevance of the proposed criteria by focusing especially on serendipitous treatments involving DBS, i.e., cases in which an unintended therapeutic benefit occurred. These cases highlight the importance of gaining the consent of the subject for the new therapy in order to avoid committing an act of mind control.

  2. Default brain functionality in blind people.

    PubMed

    Burton, H; Snyder, A Z; Raichle, M E

    2004-10-26

    We studied whether default functionality of the human brain, as revealed by task-independent decreases in activity occurring during goal-directed behaviors, is functionally reorganized by blindness. Three groups of otherwise normal adults were studied: early blind, adventitiously blind, and normally sighted. They were imaged by using functional MRI during performance of a word association task (verb generation to nouns) administered by using auditory stimuli in all groups and Braille reading in blind participants. In sighted people, this task normally produces robust task-independent decreases relative to a baseline of quiet wakefulness with eyes closed. Our functional MRI results indicate that task-independent decreases are qualitatively similar across all participant groups in medial and dorsal prefrontal, lateral parietal, anterior precuneus, and posterior cingulate cortices. Similarities in task-independent decreases are consistent with the hypothesis that functional reorganization resulting from the absence of a particular sensory modality does not qualitatively affect default functionality as revealed by task-independent decreases. More generally, these results support the notion that the brain largely operates intrinsically, with sensory information modulating rather than determining system operations.

  3. Bystander CPR Helps Save Brain Function After Near-Drowning

    MedlinePlus

    ... fullstory_165984.html Bystander CPR Helps Save Brain Function After Near-Drowning Heart compressions were even more ... are more likely to recover with good brain function if bystanders immediately begin chest compressions rather than ...

  4. Violent Video Games Alter Brain Function in Young Men

    MedlinePlus

    ... News from the RSNA Annual Meeting Violent Video Games Alter Brain Function in Young Men At A ... MRI, researchers have found that playing violent video games for one week causes changes in brain function. ...

  5. Brain Function Lateralization and Language Acquisition: the Evidence from Japanese.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sanches, Mary

    1979-01-01

    Presents evidence of differences in brain function lateralization between Japanese-speakers and speakers of Indo-European languages, and suggests that current conceptualizations of brain function specialization are not adequate. (AM)

  6. Functional brain networks in schizophrenia: a review.

    PubMed

    Calhoun, Vince D; Eichele, Tom; Pearlson, Godfrey

    2009-01-01

    Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) has become a major technique for studying cognitive function and its disruption in mental illness, including schizophrenia. The major proportion of imaging studies focused primarily upon identifying regions which hemodynamic response amplitudes covary with particular stimuli and differentiate between patient and control groups. In addition to such amplitude based comparisons, one can estimate temporal correlations and compute maps of functional connectivity between regions which include the variance associated with event-related responses as well as intrinsic fluctuations of hemodynamic activity. Functional connectivity maps can be computed by correlating all voxels with a seed region when a spatial prior is available. An alternative are multivariate decompositions such as independent component analysis (ICA) which extract multiple components, each of which is a spatially distinct map of voxels with a common time course. Recent work has shown that these networks are pervasive in relaxed resting and during task performance and hence provide robust measures of intact and disturbed brain activity. This in turn bears the prospect of yielding biomarkers for schizophrenia, which can be described both in terms of disrupted local processing as well as altered global connectivity between large-scale networks. In this review we will summarize functional connectivity measures with a focus upon work with ICA and discuss the meaning of intrinsic fluctuations. In addition, examples of how brain networks have been used for classification of disease will be shown. We present work with functional network connectivity, an approach that enables the evaluation of the interplay between multiple networks and how they are affected in disease. We conclude by discussing new variants of ICA for extracting maximally group discriminative networks from data. In summary, it is clear that identification of brain networks and their inter

  7. Perceived Chronic Stress Exposure Modulates Reward-Related Medial Prefrontal Cortex Responses to Acute Stress in Depression

    PubMed Central

    Kumar, Poornima; Slavich, George M.; Berghorst, Lisa H.; Treadway, Michael T.; Brooks, Nancy H.; Dutra, Sunny J.; Greve, Douglas N.; O'Donovan, Aoife; Bleil, Maria E.; Maninger, Nicole; Pizzagalli, Diego A.

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Major depressive disorder (MDD) is often precipitated by life stress and growing evidence suggests that stress-induced alterations in reward processing may contribute to such risk. However, no human imaging studies have examined how recent life stress exposure modulates the neural systems that underlie reward processing in depressed and healthy individuals. Methods In this proof-of-concept study, 12 MDD and 10 psychiatrically healthy individuals were interviewed using the Life Events and Difficulties Schedule (LEDS) to assess their perceived levels of recent acute and chronic life stress exposure. Additionally, each participant performed a monetary incentive delay task under baseline (no-stress) and stress (social-evaluative) conditions during functional MRI. Results Across groups, medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) activation to reward feedback was greater during acute stress versus no-stress conditions in individuals with greater perceived stressor severity. Under acute stress, depressed individuals showed a positive correlation between perceived stressor severity levels and reward-related mPFC activation (r = 0.79, p = 0.004), whereas no effect was found in healthy controls. Moreover, for depressed (but not healthy) individuals, the correlations between the stress (r = 0.79) and no-stress (r = −0.48) conditions were significantly different. Finally, relative to controls, depressed participants showed significantly reduced mPFC grey matter, but functional findings remained when accounting for structural differences. Limitation Small sample size, which warrants replication. Conclusion Depressed individuals experiencing greater recent life stress recruited the mPFC more under stress when processing rewards. Our results represent an initial step toward elucidating mechanisms underlying stress sensitization and recurrence in depression. PMID:25898329

  8. The Big Five default brain: functional evidence.

    PubMed

    Sampaio, Adriana; Soares, José Miguel; Coutinho, Joana; Sousa, Nuno; Gonçalves, Óscar F

    2014-11-01

    Recent neuroimaging studies have provided evidence that different dimensions of human personality may be associated with specific structural neuroanatomic correlates. Identifying brain correlates of a situation-independent personality structure would require evidence of a stable default mode of brain functioning. In this study, we investigated the correlates of the Big Five personality dimensions (Extraversion, Neuroticism, Openness/Intellect, Agreeableness, and Conscientiousness) and the default mode network (DMN). Forty-nine healthy adults completed the NEO-Five Factor. The results showed that the Extraversion (E) and Agreeableness (A) were positively correlated with activity in the midline core of the DMN, whereas Neuroticism (N), Openness (O), and Conscientiousness (C) were correlated with the parietal cortex system. Activity of the anterior cingulate cortex was positively associated with A and negatively with C. Regions of the parietal lobe were differentially associated with each personality dimension. The present study not only confirms previous functional correlates regarding the Big Five personality dimensions, but it also expands our knowledge showing the association between different personality dimensions and specific patterns of brain activation at rest.

  9. Circadian clocks, brain function, and development.

    PubMed

    Frank, Ellen; Sidor, Michelle M; Gamble, Karen L; Cirelli, Chiara; Sharkey, Katherine M; Hoyle, Nathaniel; Tikotzky, Liat; Talbot, Lisa S; McCarthy, Michael J; Hasler, Brant P

    2013-12-01

    Circadian clocks are temporal interfaces that organize biological systems and behavior to dynamic external environments. Components of the molecular clock are expressed throughout the brain and are centrally poised to play an important role in brain function. This paper focuses on key issues concerning the relationship among circadian clocks, brain function, and development, and discusses three topic areas: (1) sleep and its relationship to the circadian system; (2) systems development and psychopathology (spanning the prenatal period through late life); and (3) circadian factors and their application to neuropsychiatric disorders. We also explore circadian genetics and psychopathology and the selective pressures on the evolution of clocks. Last, a lively debate is presented on whether circadian factors are central to mood disorders. Emerging from research on circadian rhythms is a model of the interaction among genes, sleep, and the environment that converges on the circadian clock to influence susceptibility to developing psychopathology. This model may lend insight into effective treatments for mood disorders and inform development of new interventions.

  10. Chemogenetic tools to interrogate brain functions.

    PubMed

    Sternson, Scott M; Roth, Bryan L

    2014-01-01

    Elucidating the roles of neuronal cell types for physiology and behavior is essential for understanding brain functions. Perturbation of neuron electrical activity can be used to probe the causal relationship between neuronal cell types and behavior. New genetically encoded neuron perturbation tools have been developed for remotely controlling neuron function using small molecules that activate engineered receptors that can be targeted to cell types using genetic methods. Here we describe recent progress for approaches using genetically engineered receptors that selectively interact with small molecules. Called "chemogenetics," receptors with diverse cellular functions have been developed that facilitate the selective pharmacological control over a diverse range of cell-signaling processes, including electrical activity, for molecularly defined cell types. These tools have revealed remarkably specific behavioral physiological influences for molecularly defined cell types that are often intermingled with populations having different or even opposite functions.

  11. Transgenerational epigenetic effects on brain functions.

    PubMed

    Bohacek, Johannes; Gapp, Katharina; Saab, Bechara J; Mansuy, Isabelle M

    2013-02-15

    Psychiatric diseases are multifaceted disorders with complex etiology, recognized to have strong heritable components. Despite intense research efforts, genetic loci that substantially account for disease heritability have not yet been identified. Over the last several years, epigenetic processes have emerged as important factors for many brain diseases, and the discovery of epigenetic processes in germ cells has raised the possibility that they may contribute to disease heritability and disease risk. This review examines epigenetic mechanisms in complex diseases and summarizes the most illustrative examples of transgenerational epigenetic inheritance in mammals and their relevance for brain function. Environmental factors that can affect molecular processes and behavior in exposed individuals and their offspring, and their potential epigenetic underpinnings, are described. Possible routes and mechanisms of transgenerational transmission are proposed, and the major questions and challenges raised by this emerging field of research are considered.

  12. Brain function assessment in different conscious states.

    PubMed

    Ozgoren, Murat; Bayazit, Onur; Kocaaslan, Sibel; Gokmen, Necati; Oniz, Adile

    2010-06-03

    The study of brain functioning is a major challenge in neuroscience fields as human brain has a dynamic and ever changing information processing. Case is worsened with conditions where brain undergoes major changes in so-called different conscious states. Even though the exact definition of consciousness is a hard one, there are certain conditions where the descriptions have reached a consensus. The sleep and the anesthesia are different conditions which are separable from each other and also from wakefulness. The aim of our group has been to tackle the issue of brain functioning with setting up similar research conditions for these three conscious states. In order to achieve this goal we have designed an auditory stimulation battery with changing conditions to be recorded during a 40 channel EEG polygraph (Nuamps) session. The stimuli (modified mismatch, auditory evoked etc.) have been administered both in the operation room and the sleep lab via Embedded Interactive Stimulus Unit which was developed in our lab. The overall study has provided some results for three domains of consciousness. In order to be able to monitor the changes we have incorporated Bispectral Index Monitoring to both sleep and anesthesia conditions. The first stage results have provided a basic understanding in these altered states such that auditory stimuli have been successfully processed in both light and deep sleep stages. The anesthesia provides a sudden change in brain responsiveness; therefore a dosage dependent anesthetic administration has proved to be useful. The auditory processing was exemplified targeting N1 wave, with a thorough analysis from spectrogram to sLORETA. The frequency components were observed to be shifting throughout the stages. The propofol administration and the deeper sleep stages both resulted in the decreasing of N1 component. The sLORETA revealed similar activity at BA7 in sleep (BIS 70) and target propofol concentration of 1.2 microg/mL. The current study

  13. Methylphenidate administration to adolescent rats determines plastic changes on reward-related behavior and striatal gene expression.

    PubMed

    Adriani, Walter; Leo, Damiana; Greco, Dario; Rea, Monica; di Porzio, Umberto; Laviola, Giovanni; Perrone-Capano, Carla

    2006-09-01

    Administration of methylphenidate (MPH, Ritalin) to children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is an elective therapy, but raises concerns for public health, due to possible persistent neurobehavioral alterations. Wistar adolescent rats (30 to 46 day old) were administered MPH or saline (SAL) for 16 days, and tested for reward-related and motivational-choice behaviors. When tested in adulthood in a drug-free state, MPH-pretreated animals showed increased choice flexibility and economical efficiency, as well as a dissociation between dampened place conditioning and more marked locomotor sensitization induced by cocaine, compared to SAL-pretreated controls. The striatal complex, a core component of the natural reward system, was collected both at the end of the MPH treatment and in adulthood. Genome-wide expression profiling, followed by RT-PCR validation on independent samples, showed that three members of the postsynaptic-density family and five neurotransmitter receptors were upregulated in the adolescent striatum after subchronic MPH administration. Interestingly, only genes for the kainate 2 subunit of ionotropic glutamate receptor (Grik2, also known as KA2) and the 5-hydroxytryptamine (serotonin) receptor 7 (Htr7) (but not GABA(A) subunits and adrenergic receptor alpha1b) were still upregulated in adulthood. cAMP responsive element-binding protein and Homer 1a transcripts were modulated only as a long-term effect. In summary, our data indicate short-term changes in neural plasticity, suggested by modulation of expression of key genes, and functional changes in striatal circuits. These modifications might in turn trigger enduring changes responsible for the adult neurobehavioral profile, that is, altered processing of incentive values and a modified flexibility/habit balance.

  14. An animal model of genetic vulnerability to behavioral disinhibition and responsiveness to reward-related cues: implications for addiction.

    PubMed

    Flagel, Shelly B; Robinson, Terry E; Clark, Jeremy J; Clinton, Sarah M; Watson, Stanley J; Seeman, Phillip; Phillips, Paul E M; Akil, Huda

    2010-01-01

    Rats selectively bred based on high or low reactivity to a novel environment were characterized for other behavioral and neurobiological traits thought to be relevant to addiction vulnerability. The two lines of animals, which differ in their propensity to self-administer drugs, also differ in the value they attribute to cues associated with reward, in impulsive behavior, and in their dopamine system. When a cue was paired with food or cocaine reward bred high-responder rats (bHRs) learned to approach the cue, whereas bred low-responder rats (bLRs) learned to approach the location of food delivery, suggesting that bHRs but not bLRs attributed incentive value to the cue. Moreover, although less impulsive on a measure of 'impulsive choice', bHRs were more impulsive on a measure of 'impulsive action'- ie, they had difficulty withholding an action to receive a reward, indicative of 'behavioral disinhibition'. The dopamine agonist quinpirole caused greater psychomotor activation in bHRs relative to bLRs, suggesting dopamine supersensitivity. Indeed, relative to bLRs, bHRs also had a greater proportion of dopamine D2(high) receptors, the functionally active form of the receptor, in the striatum, in spite of lower D2 mRNA levels and comparable total D2 binding. In addition, fast-scan cyclic voltammetry revealed that bHRs had more spontaneous dopamine 'release events' in the core of the nucleus accumbens than bLRs. Thus, bHRs exhibit parallels to 'externalizing disorders' in humans, representing a genetic animal model of addiction vulnerability associated with a propensity to attribute incentive salience to reward-related cues, behavioral disinhibition, and increased dopaminergic 'tone.'

  15. The Neurobiology of Giving Versus Receiving Support: The Role of Stress-Related and Social Reward-Related Neural Activity.

    PubMed

    Inagaki, Tristen K; Bryne Haltom, Kate E; Suzuki, Shosuke; Jevtic, Ivana; Hornstein, Erica; Bower, Julienne E; Eisenberger, Naomi I

    2016-05-01

    There is a strong association between supportive ties and health. However, most research has focused on the health benefits that come from the support one receives while largely ignoring the support giver and how giving may contribute to good health. Moreover, few studies have examined the neural mechanisms associated with support giving or how giving support compares to receiving support. The current study assessed the relationships: a) between self-reported receiving and giving social support and vulnerability for negative psychological outcomes and b) between receiving and giving social support and neural activity to socially rewarding and stressful tasks. Thirty-six participants (mean [standard deviation] age = 22.36 [3.78] years, 44% female) completed three tasks in the functional magnetic resonance imaging scanner: 1) a stress task (mental arithmetic under evaluative threat), b) an affiliative task (viewing images of close others), and c) a prosocial task. Both self-reported receiving and giving social support were associated with reduced vulnerability for negative psychological outcomes. However, across the three neuroimaging tasks, giving but not receiving support was related to reduced stress-related activity (dorsal anterior cingulate cortex [r = -0.27], left [r = -0.28] and right anterior insula [r = -0.33], and left [r = -0.32] and right amygdala [r = -0.32]) to a stress task, greater reward-related activity (left [r = 0.42] and right ventral striatum [VS; r = 0.41]) to an affiliative task, and greater caregiving-related activity (left VS [r = 0.31], right VS [r = 0.31], and septal area [r = 0.39]) to a prosocial task. These results contribute to an emerging literature suggesting that support giving is an overlooked contributor to how social support can benefit health.

  16. Split My Brain: A Case Study of Seizure Disorder and Brain Function

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Omarzu, Julia

    2004-01-01

    This case involves a couple deciding whether or not their son should undergo brain surgery to treat a severe seizure disorder. In examining this dilemma, students apply knowledge of brain anatomy and function. They also learn about brain scanning techniques and discuss the plasticity of the brain.

  17. Split My Brain: A Case Study of Seizure Disorder and Brain Function

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Omarzu, Julia

    2004-01-01

    This case involves a couple deciding whether or not their son should undergo brain surgery to treat a severe seizure disorder. In examining this dilemma, students apply knowledge of brain anatomy and function. They also learn about brain scanning techniques and discuss the plasticity of the brain.

  18. Structure and function of large-scale brain systems.

    PubMed

    Koziol, Leonard F; Barker, Lauren A; Joyce, Arthur W; Hrin, Skip

    2014-01-01

    This article introduces the functional neuroanatomy of large-scale brain systems. Both the structure and functions of these brain networks are presented. All human behavior is the result of interactions within and between these brain systems. This system of brain function completely changes our understanding of how cognition and behavior are organized within the brain, replacing the traditional lesion model. Understanding behavior within the context of brain network interactions has profound implications for modifying abstract constructs such as attention, learning, and memory. These constructs also must be understood within the framework of a paradigm shift, which emphasizes ongoing interactions within a dynamically changing environment.

  19. Fast Optical Imaging of Human Brain Function

    PubMed Central

    Gratton, Gabriele; Fabiani, Monica

    2010-01-01

    Great advancements in brain imaging during the last few decades have opened a large number of new possibilities for neuroscientists. The most dominant methodologies (electrophysiological and magnetic resonance-based methods) emphasize temporal and spatial information, respectively. However, theorizing about brain function has recently emphasized the importance of rapid (within 100 ms or so) interactions between different elements of complex neuronal networks. Fast optical imaging, and in particular the event-related optical signal (EROS, a technology that has emerged over the last 15 years) may provide descriptions of localized (to sub-cm level) brain activity with a temporal resolution of less than 100 ms. The main limitations of EROS are its limited penetration, which allows us to image cortical structures not deeper than 3 cm from the surface of the head, and its low signal-to-noise ratio. Advantages include the fact that EROS is compatible with most other imaging methods, including electrophysiological, magnetic resonance, and trans-cranial magnetic stimulation techniques, with which can be recorded concurrently. In this paper we present a summary of the research that has been conducted so far on fast optical imaging, including evidence for the possibility of recording neuronal signals with this method, the properties of the signals, and various examples of applications to the study of human cognitive neuroscience. Extant issues, controversies, and possible future developments are also discussed. PMID:20631845

  20. Brain Dynamics, Chaos and Bessel Functions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Freeman, W. J.; Capolupo, A.; Kozma, R.; Olivares del Campo, A.; Vitiello, G.

    2015-07-01

    By resorting to Freeman's observations showing that the distribution functions of impulse responses of cortex to sensory stimuli resemble Bessel functions, we study brain dynamics by considering the equivalence of spherical Bessel equation, in a given parametrization, to two oscillator equations, one damped and one amplified oscillator. The study of such a couple of equations, which are at the basis of the formulation of the dissipative many-body model, reveals the structure of the root loci of poles and zeros of solutions of Bessel equations, which are consistent with results obtained using ordinary differential equation techniques. We analyze stable and unstable limit cycles and consider thermodynamic features of brain functioning, which in this way may be described in terms of transitions between chaotic gas-like and ordered liquid-like behaviors. Nonlinearity dominates the dynamical critical transition regimes. Linear behavior, on the other hand, characterizes superpositions within self-organized neuronal domains in each dynamical phase. The formalism is consistent with the observed coexistence in circular causality of pulse density fields and wave density fields.

  1. Functional brain correlates of heterosexual paedophilia.

    PubMed

    Schiffer, Boris; Paul, Thomas; Gizewski, Elke; Forsting, Michael; Leygraf, Norbert; Schedlowski, Manfred; Kruger, Tillmann H C

    2008-05-15

    Although the neuronal mechanisms underlying normal sexual motivation and function have recently been examined, the alterations in brain function in deviant sexual behaviours such as paedophilia are largely unknown. The objective of this study was to identify paedophilia-specific functional networks implicated in sexual arousal. Therefore a consecutive sample of eight paedophile forensic inpatients, exclusively attracted to females, and 12 healthy age-matched heterosexual control participants from a comparable socioeconomic stratum participated in a visual sexual stimulation procedure during functional magnetic resonance imaging. The visual stimuli were sexually stimulating photographs and emotionally neutral photographs. Immediately after the imaging session subjective responses pertaining to sexual desire were recorded. Principally, the brain response of heterosexual paedophiles to heteropaedophilic stimuli was comparable to that of heterosexual males to heterosexual stimuli, including different limbic structures (amygdala, cingulate gyrus, and hippocampus), the substantia nigra, caudate nucleus, as well as the anterior cingulate cortex, different thalamic nuclei, and associative cortices. However, responses to visual sexual stimulation were found in the orbitofrontal cortex in healthy heterosexual males, but not in paedophiles, in whom abnormal activity in the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex was observed. Thus, in line with clinical observations and neuropsychological studies, it seems that central processing of sexual stimuli in heterosexual paedophiles may be altered by a disturbance in the prefrontal networks, which, as has already been hypothesized, may be associated with stimulus-controlled behaviours, such as sexual compulsive behaviours. Moreover, these findings may suggest a dysfunction (in the functional and effective connectivity) at the cognitive stage of sexual arousal processing.

  2. Phosphatidylserine in the brain: metabolism and function.

    PubMed

    Kim, Hee-Yong; Huang, Bill X; Spector, Arthur A

    2014-10-01

    Phosphatidylserine (PS) is the major anionic phospholipid class particularly enriched in the inner leaflet of the plasma membrane in neural tissues. PS is synthesized from phosphatidylcholine or phosphatidylethanolamine by exchanging the base head group with serine, and this reaction is catalyzed by phosphatidylserine synthase 1 and phosphatidylserine synthase 2 located in the endoplasmic reticulum. Activation of Akt, Raf-1 and protein kinase C signaling, which supports neuronal survival and differentiation, requires interaction of these proteins with PS localized in the cytoplasmic leaflet of the plasma membrane. Furthermore, neurotransmitter release by exocytosis and a number of synaptic receptors and proteins are modulated by PS present in the neuronal membranes. Brain is highly enriched with docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), and brain PS has a high DHA content. By promoting PS synthesis, DHA can uniquely expand the PS pool in neuronal membranes and thereby influence PS-dependent signaling and protein function. Ethanol decreases DHA-promoted PS synthesis and accumulation in neurons, which may contribute to the deleterious effects of ethanol intake. Improvement of some memory functions has been observed in cognitively impaired subjects as a result of PS supplementation, but the mechanism is unclear.

  3. Early Brain Stimulation May Help Stroke Survivors Recover Language Function

    MedlinePlus

    ... Making News on Heart.org Learn More Early brain stimulation may help stroke survivors recover language function ... org and strokeassociation.org Related Images Infographic - Thiel-Brain Stimulation copyright American Heart Association Download (311.8 ...

  4. Dietary boron, brain function, and cognitive performance.

    PubMed Central

    Penland, J G

    1994-01-01

    Although the trace element boron has yet to be recognized as an essential nutrient for humans, recent data from animal and human studies suggest that boron may be important for mineral metabolism and membrane function. To investigate further the functional role of boron, brain electrophysiology and cognitive performance were assessed in response to dietary manipulation of boron (approximately 0.25 versus approximately 3.25 mg boron/2000 kcal/day) in three studies with healthy older men and women. Within-subject designs were used to assess functional responses in all studies. Spectral analysis of electroencephalographic data showed effects of dietary boron in two of the three studies. When the low boron intake was compared to the high intake, there was a significant (p < 0.05) increase in the proportion of low-frequency activity, and a decrease in the proportion of higher-frequency activity, an effect often observed in response to general malnutrition and heavy metal toxicity. Performance (e.g., response time) on various cognitive and psychomotor tasks also showed an effect of dietary boron. When contrasted with the high boron intake, low dietary boron resulted in significantly poorer performance (p < 0.05) on tasks emphasizing manual dexterity (studies II and III); eye-hand coordination (study II); attention (all studies); perception (study III); encoding and short-term memory (all studies); and long-term memory (study I). Collectively, the data from these three studies indicate that boron may play a role in human brain function and cognitive performance, and provide additional evidence that boron is an essential nutrient for humans. PMID:7889884

  5. Order and disorder in the brain function.

    PubMed

    Quadens, Olga

    2003-01-01

    The interest in studying the brain electrical activity as a function of the development of intelligence has been spurred by the need to understand how the brain responds to environmental information. The description of sleep in mentally retarded children reveals deviant patterns of the EEG-spindles and of the eye movement activity (REM sleep) when compared to normal children. The patterns may be considered as a valuable index of mental function. According to experimental evidence, the distribution of the eye movements of sleep appears either as random or ordered. The latter are altered in the mentally handicapped in whom the appearance out of chaos, of the order which is needed for intelligence and memory to function, is altered. The sleep signs are redundant as from birth. Their pattern is also related to the psychomotor development of the infant. If their distribution remains random, or appears in long uninterrupted sequences of waves as in epilepsy, intelligence does not develop. A similar strategy appears to function in the foetus when nature organizes the structures that will lead to the development of intelligence. The eye movement patterns of sleep change in the pregnant women as a function of term and resemble those of premature babies of a similar gestational age. They also change as a function of the menstrual cycle and more generally as a function of age. The hypothesis that attention is the diurnal equivalent of REM sleep is discussed. Attempts at modelling the eye movement patterns of REM sleep as a function of near zero gravity environments have been made. 1) By means of a Montecarlo simulation using the semi Markov model during the Spacelab 1 flight. 2) With the method of the single and multiple g-phase transition analysis of the strange attractor dimension (d) during parabolic flights. The implication of the latter for the neural processes involved in learning is that the central nervous system can preserve intact, from input to output, over a

  6. Correspondence of the brain's functional architecture during activation and rest.

    PubMed

    Smith, Stephen M; Fox, Peter T; Miller, Karla L; Glahn, David C; Fox, P Mickle; Mackay, Clare E; Filippini, Nicola; Watkins, Kate E; Toro, Roberto; Laird, Angela R; Beckmann, Christian F

    2009-08-04

    Neural connections, providing the substrate for functional networks, exist whether or not they are functionally active at any given moment. However, it is not known to what extent brain regions are continuously interacting when the brain is "at rest." In this work, we identify the major explicit activation networks by carrying out an image-based activation network analysis of thousands of separate activation maps derived from the BrainMap database of functional imaging studies, involving nearly 30,000 human subjects. Independently, we extract the major covarying networks in the resting brain, as imaged with functional magnetic resonance imaging in 36 subjects at rest. The sets of major brain networks, and their decompositions into subnetworks, show close correspondence between the independent analyses of resting and activation brain dynamics. We conclude that the full repertoire of functional networks utilized by the brain in action is continuously and dynamically "active" even when at "rest."

  7. Brain microvascular function during cardiopulmonary bypass

    SciTech Connect

    Sorensen, H.R.; Husum, B.; Waaben, J.; Andersen, K.; Andersen, L.I.; Gefke, K.; Kaarsen, A.L.; Gjedde, A.

    1987-11-01

    Emboli in the brain microvasculature may inhibit brain activity during cardiopulmonary bypass. Such hypothetical blockade, if confirmed, may be responsible for the reduction of cerebral metabolic rate for glucose observed in animals subjected to cardiopulmonary bypass. In previous studies of cerebral blood flow during bypass, brain microcirculation was not evaluated. In the present study in animals (pigs), reduction of the number of perfused capillaries was estimated by measurements of the capillary diffusion capacity for hydrophilic tracers of low permeability. Capillary diffusion capacity, cerebral blood flow, and cerebral metabolic rate for glucose were measured simultaneously by the integral method, different tracers being used with different circulation times. In eight animals subjected to normothermic cardiopulmonary bypass, and seven subjected to hypothermic bypass, cerebral blood flow, cerebral metabolic rate for glucose, and capillary diffusion capacity decreased significantly: cerebral blood flow from 63 to 43 ml/100 gm/min in normothermia and to 34 ml/100 gm/min in hypothermia and cerebral metabolic rate for glucose from 43.0 to 23.0 mumol/100 gm/min in normothermia and to 14.1 mumol/100 gm/min in hypothermia. The capillary diffusion capacity declined markedly from 0.15 to 0.03 ml/100 gm/min in normothermia but only to 0.08 ml/100 gm/min in hypothermia. We conclude that the decrease of cerebral metabolic rate for glucose during normothermic cardiopulmonary bypass is caused by interruption of blood flow through a part of the capillary bed, possibly by microemboli, and that cerebral blood flow is an inadequate indicator of capillary blood flow. Further studies must clarify why normal microvascular function appears to be preserved during hypothermic cardiopulmonary bypass.

  8. PER1 rs3027172 Genotype Interacts with Early Life Stress to Predict Problematic Alcohol Use, but Not Reward-Related Ventral Striatum Activity

    PubMed Central

    Baranger, David A. A.; Ifrah, Chloé; Prather, Aric A.; Carey, Caitlin E.; Corral-Frías, Nadia S.; Drabant Conley, Emily; Hariri, Ahmad R.; Bogdan, Ryan

    2016-01-01

    Increasing evidence suggests that the circadian and stress regulatory systems contribute to alcohol use disorder (AUD) risk, which may partially arise through effects on reward-related neural function. The C allele of the PER1 rs3027172 single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) reduces PER1 expression in cells incubated with cortisol and has been associated with increased risk for adult AUD and problematic drinking among adolescents exposed to high levels of familial psychosocial adversity. Using data from undergraduate students who completed the ongoing Duke Neurogenetics Study (DNS) (n = 665), we tested whether exposure to early life stress (ELS; Childhood Trauma Questionnaire) moderates the association between rs3027172 genotype and later problematic alcohol use (Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test) as well as ventral striatum (VS) reactivity to reward (card-guessing task while functional magnetic resonance imaging data were acquired). Initial analyses found that PER1 rs3027172 genotype interacted with ELS to predict both problematic drinking and VS reactivity; minor C allele carriers, who were also exposed to elevated ELS reported greater problematic drinking and exhibited greater ventral striatum reactivity to reward-related stimuli. When gene × covariate and environment × covariate interactions were controlled for, the interaction predicting problematic alcohol use remained significant (p < 0.05, corrected) while the interaction predicting VS reactivity was no longer significant. These results extend our understanding of relationships between PER1 genotype, ELS, and problematic alcohol use, and serve as a cautionary tale on the importance of controlling for potential confounders in studies of moderation including gene × environment interactions. PMID:27065929

  9. Executive Control- and Reward-Related Neural Processes Associated with the Opportunity to Engage in Voluntary Dishonest Moral Decision Making

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Xiaoqing; Pornpattananangkul, Narun; Nusslock, Robin

    2016-01-01

    Research has begun to examine the neurocognitive processes underlying voluntary moral decision making, which involves engaging in honest or dishonest behavior in a setting where the individual is free to make his or her own moral decisions. Employing event-related potentials (ERPs), we measured executive control and reward-related neural processes during an incentivized coin-guessing task where participants had the opportunity to voluntarily engage in dishonest behavior by over-reporting their wins to maximize earnings. We report four primary findings: First, the opportunity to deceive recruited executive control processes involving conflict monitoring and conflict resolution, as evidenced by a higher N2 and a smaller P3; Second, processing the outcome of the coin-flips engaged reward-related processes, as evidenced by a larger medial feedback-negativity (MFN) for incorrect (loss) than correct (win) guesses, reflecting a reward prediction error signal. Third, elevated executive control-related neural activity reflecting conflict resolution (i.e., attenuated executive control-P3) predicted a greater likelihood of engaging in overall deceptive behavior. Finally, whereas elevated reward-related neural activity (reward-P3) was as associated with a greater likelihood of engaging in overall deceptive behavior, an elevated reward prediction error signal (MFN difference score) predicted increased trial-by-trial moral behavioral adjustment (i.e., a greater likelihood to over-report wins following a previous honest loss than a previous honest win trial). Collectively, these findings suggest that both executive control- and reward-related neural processes are implicated in moral decision making. PMID:25645507

  10. Brain surface conformal parameterization with algebraic functions.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yalin; Gu, Xianfeng; Chan, Tony F; Thompson, Paul M; Yau, Shing-Tung

    2006-01-01

    In medical imaging, parameterized 3D surface models are of great interest for anatomical modeling and visualization, statistical comparisons of anatomy, and surface-based registration and signal processing. Here we introduce a parameterization method based on algebraic functions. By solving the Yamabe equation with the Ricci flow method, we can conformally map a brain surface to a multi-hole disk. The resulting parameterizations do not have any singularities and are intrinsic and stable. To illustrate the technique, we computed parameterizations of several types of anatomical surfaces in MRI scans of the brain, including the hippocampi and the cerebral cortices with various landmark curves labeled. For the cerebral cortical surfaces, we show the parameterization results are consistent with selected landmark curves and can be matched to each other using constrained harmonic maps. Unlike previous planar conformal parameterization methods, our algorithm does not introduce any singularity points. It also offers a method to explicitly match landmark curves between anatomical surfaces such as the cortex, and to compute conformal invariants for statistical comparisons of anatomy.

  11. Default Mode of Brain Function in Monkeys

    PubMed Central

    Mantini, Dante; Gerits, Annelis; Nelissen, Koen; Durand, Jean-Baptiste; Joly, Olivier; Simone, Luciano; Sawamura, Hiromasa; Wardak, Claire; Orban, Guy A.; Buckner, Randy L.; Vanduffel, Wim

    2013-01-01

    Human neuroimaging has revealed a specific network of brain regions—the default-mode network (DMN)—that reduces its activity during goal-directed behavior. So far, evidence for a similar network in monkeys is mainly indirect, since, except for one positron emission tomography study, it is all based on functional connectivity analysis rather than activity increases during passive task states. Here, we tested whether a consistent DMN exists in monkeys using its defining property. We performed a meta-analysis of functional magnetic resonance imaging data collected in 10 awake monkeys to reveal areas in which activity consistently decreases when task demands shift from passive tasks to externally oriented processing. We observed task-related spatially specific deactivations across 15 experiments, implying in the monkey a functional equivalent of the human DMN. We revealed by resting-state connectivity that prefrontal and medial parietal regions, including areas 9/46d and 31, respectively, constitute the DMN core, being functionally connected to all other DMN areas. We also detected two distinct subsystems composed of DMN areas with stronger functional connections between each other. These clusters included areas 24/32, 8b, and TPOC and areas 23, v23, and PGm, respectively. Such a pattern of functional connectivity largely fits, but is not completely consistent with anatomical tract tracing data in monkeys. Also, analysis of afferent and efferent connections between DMN areas suggests a multisynaptic network structure. Like humans, monkeys increase activity during passive epochs in heteromodal and limbic association regions, suggesting that they also default to internal modes of processing when not actively interacting with the environment. PMID:21900574

  12. Functional brain networks involved in reality monitoring.

    PubMed

    Metzak, Paul D; Lavigne, Katie M; Woodward, Todd S

    2015-08-01

    Source monitoring refers to the recollection of variables that specify the context and conditions in which a memory episode was encoded. This process involves using the qualitative and quantitative features of a memory trace to distinguish its source. One specific class of source monitoring is reality monitoring, which involves distinguishing internally generated from externally generated information, that is, memories of imagined events from real events. The purpose of the present study was to identify functional brain networks that underlie reality monitoring, using an alternative type of source monitoring as a control condition. On the basis of previous studies on self-referential thinking, it was expected that a medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) based network would be more active during reality monitoring than the control condition, due to the requirement to focus on a comparison of internal (self) and external (other) source information. Two functional brain networks emerged from this analysis, one reflecting increasing task-related activity, and one reflecting decreasing task-related activity. The second network was mPFC based, and was characterized by task-related deactivations in areas resembling the default-mode network; namely, the mPFC, middle temporal gyri, lateral parietal regions, and the precuneus, and these deactivations were diminished during reality monitoring relative to source monitoring, resulting in higher activity during reality monitoring. This result supports previous research suggesting that self-referential thinking involves the mPFC, but extends this to a network-level interpretation of reality monitoring. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Mapping Functional Connectivity in Patients with Brain Lesions

    PubMed Central

    Guggisberg, Adrian G.; Honma, Susanne M.; Findlay, Anne M.; Dalal, Sarang S.; Kirsch, Heidi E.; Berger, Mitchel S.; Nagarajan, Srikantan S.

    2013-01-01

    OBJECTIVE Although electrophysiological measures of functional connectivity between brain areas are widely used, the spatial distribution of functional interactions as well as the disturbance introduced by focal brain lesions remains poorly understood. Based on the rationale that damaged brain tissue can be expected to be disconnected from the physiological interactions among healthy areas, this study aimed to map the functionality of brain areas according to their connectivity with other areas. METHODS Magnetoencephalographic (MEG) recordings of spontaneous cortical activity during resting state were obtained from 15 consecutive patients with focal brain lesions and from 14 healthy controls. Neural activity at each volume element (voxel) in the brain was estimated using an adaptive spatial filtering technique. For each brain voxel, the mean imaginary coherence of all its connections with other brain voxels was then caluculated as an index of functional connectivity, and the results compared across brain regions and between subjects. RESULTS The magnitude of the mean imaginary coherence of all voxels and subjects was greatest in the alpha frequency range corresponding to the human cortical idling rhythm. In healthy subjects, functionally critical brain areas such as the somatosensory and language cortices had the highest alpha coherence. When compared to healthy controls, all lesion patients had diffuse or scattered brain areas with decreased coherence. Patients with lesion-induced neurological deficits displayed decreased connectivity estimates in the corresponding brain area compared to intact contralateral regions. In tumor patients without preoperative neurological deficits, brain areas showing decreased coherence could be surgically resected without the occurrence of post-surgical deficits. CONCLUSION Resting state coherence measured with MEG is capable of mapping the functional connectivity of the brain, and can therefore offer valuable information for use in

  14. Effects of the diet on brain function

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fernstrom, J. D.

    1981-01-01

    The rates of synthesis by brain neurons of the neurotransmitters serotonin, acetylcholine, and the catecholamines depend on the brain levels of the respective precursor molecules. Brain levels of each precursor are influenced by their blood concentration, and for the amino acid precursors, by the blood levels of other amino acids as well. Since diet readily alters blood concentrations of each of these precursors, it thereby also influences the brain formation of their neutrotransmitter products.

  15. Atrophy of reward-related striatal structures in fatigued MS patients is independent of physical disability.

    PubMed

    Damasceno, Alfredo; Damasceno, Benito Pereira; Cendes, Fernando

    2016-05-01

    MRI studies have shown gray-matter abnormalities in fatigued multiple sclerosis (MS) patients. However, given that physical disability is highly correlated to MS fatigue, it is often difficult to disentangle its effect in these MRI findings. The objective of this research paper is to investigate gray-matter damage in mildly disabled MS patients, addressing which variables were better related to fatigue while controlling for physical disability and depression. Forty-nine relapsing-remitting MS (RRMS) patients and 30 controls underwent MRI (3T). Fatigue was assessed using the Fatigue Severity Scale (FSS). Multivariate logistic regression was performed to assess the contribution of clinical and MRI metrics to fatigue. Statistical analyses were performed controlling for disability and depression. Fatigue was present in 22 (44.9%) patients. FSS score was highly correlated with EDSS (p = 0.00001). Patients with fatigue had lower brain cortical and subcortical gray-matter volumes. However, after controlling for EDSS, only the caudate and the accumbens volumes remained statistically significant. Fatigued MS patients have a global cortical and subcortical gray-matter atrophy that seems largely related to higher physical disability. However, striatal structures involved in effort-reward functions exhibited smaller volumes in fatigued patients, independently of physical disability and depressive symptoms, supporting the theory of cortico-striatal network impairment in MS fatigue. © The Author(s), 2015.

  16. Mapping distributed brain function and networks with diffuse optical tomography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eggebrecht, Adam T.; Ferradal, Silvina L.; Robichaux-Viehoever, Amy; Hassanpour, Mahlega S.; Dehghani, Hamid; Snyder, Abraham Z.; Hershey, Tamara; Culver, Joseph P.

    2014-06-01

    Mapping of human brain function has revolutionized systems neuroscience. However, traditional functional neuroimaging by positron emission tomography or functional magnetic resonance imaging cannot be used when applications require portability, or are contraindicated because of ionizing radiation (positron emission tomography) or implanted metal (functional magnetic resonance imaging). Optical neuroimaging offers a non-invasive alternative that is radiation free and compatible with implanted metal and electronic devices (for example, pacemakers). However, optical imaging technology has heretofore lacked the combination of spatial resolution and wide field of view sufficient to map distributed brain functions. Here, we present a high-density diffuse optical tomography imaging array that can map higher-order, distributed brain function. The system was tested by imaging four hierarchical language tasks and multiple resting-state networks including the dorsal attention and default mode networks. Finally, we imaged brain function in patients with Parkinson's disease and implanted deep brain stimulators that preclude functional magnetic resonance imaging.

  17. Ventral striatal control of appetitive motivation: role in ingestive behavior and reward-related learning.

    PubMed

    Kelley, Ann E

    2004-01-01

    The nucleus accumbens is a brain region that participates in the control of behaviors related to natural reinforcers, such as ingestion, sexual behavior, incentive and instrumental learning, and that also plays a role in addictive processes. This paper comprises a review of work from our laboratory that focuses on two main research areas: (i). the role of the nucleus accumbens in food motivation, and (ii). its putative functions in cellular plasticity underlying appetitive learning. First, work within a number of different behavioral paradigms has shown that accumbens neurochemical systems play specific and dissociable roles in different aspects of food seeking and food intake, and part of this function depends on integration with the lateral hypothalamus and amygdala. We propose that the nucleus accumbens integrates information related to cognitive, sensory, and emotional processing with hypothalamic mechanisms mediating energy balance. This system as a whole enables complex hierarchical control of adaptive ingestive behavior. Regarding the second research area, our studies examining acquisition of lever-pressing for food in rats have shown that activation of glutamate N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptors, within broadly distributed but interconnected regions (nucleus accumbens core, posterior striatum, prefrontal cortex, basolateral and central amygdala), is critical for such learning to occur. This receptor stimulation triggers intracellular cascades that involve protein phosphorylation and new protein synthesis. It is hypothesized that activity in this distributed network (including D1 receptor activity) computes coincident events and thus enhances the probability that temporally related actions and events (e.g. lever pressing and delivery of reward) become associated. Such basic mechanisms of plasticity within this reinforcement learning network also appear to be profoundly affected in addiction.

  18. Adult neurogenesis and its role in neuropsychiatric disease, brain repair and normal brain function.

    PubMed

    Braun, S M G; Jessberger, S

    2014-02-01

    Neural stem/progenitor cells (NSPCs) in the mammalian brain retain the ability to generate new neurones throughout life in discrete brain regions, through a process called adult neurogenesis. Adult neurogenesis, a dramatic form of adult brain circuitry plasticity, has been implicated in physiological brain function and appears to be of pivotal importance for certain forms of learning and memory. In addition, failing or altered neurogenesis has been associated with a variety of brain diseases such as major depression, epilepsy and age-related cognitive decline. Here we review recent advances in our understanding of the basic biology underlying the neurogenic process in the adult brain, focusing on mechanisms that regulate quiescence, proliferation and differentiation of NSPCs. In addition, we discuss how neurogenesis influences normal brain function, and in particular its role in memory formation, as well as its contribution to neuropsychiatric diseases. Finally, we evaluate the potential of targeting endogenous NSPCs for brain repair.

  19. Mapping brain function in freely moving subjects

    PubMed Central

    Holschneider, Daniel P.; Maarek, Jean-Michel I.

    2014-01-01

    Expression of many fundamental mammalian behaviors such as, for example, aggression, mating, foraging or social behaviors, depend on locomotor activity. A central dilemma in the functional neuroimaging of these behaviors has been the fact that conventional neuroimaging techniques generally rely on immobilization of the subject, which extinguishes all but the simplest activity. Ideally, imaging could occur in freely moving subjects, while presenting minimal interference with the subject’s natural behavior. Here we provide an overview of several approaches that have been undertaken in the past to achieve this aim in both tethered and freely moving animals, as well as in nonrestrained human subjects. Applications of specific radiotracers to single photon emission computed tomography and positron emission tomography are discussed in which brain activation is imaged after completion of the behavioral task and capture of the tracer. Potential applications to clinical neuropsychiatry are discussed, as well as challenges inherent to constraint-free functional neuroimaging. Future applications of these methods promise to increase our understanding of the neural circuits underlying mammalian behavior in health and disease. PMID:15465134

  20. The Union of Shortest Path Trees of Functional Brain Networks.

    PubMed

    Meier, Jil; Tewarie, Prejaas; Van Mieghem, Piet

    2015-11-01

    Communication between brain regions is still insufficiently understood. Applying concepts from network science has shown to be successful in gaining insight in the functioning of the brain. Recent work has implicated that especially shortest paths in the structural brain network seem to play a major role in the communication within the brain. So far, for the functional brain network, only the average length of the shortest paths has been analyzed. In this article, we propose to construct the union of shortest path trees (USPT) as a new topology for the functional brain network. The minimum spanning tree, which has been successful in a lot of recent studies to comprise important features of the functional brain network, is always included in the USPT. After interpreting the link weights of the functional brain network as communication probabilities, the USPT of this network can be uniquely defined. Using data from magnetoencephalography, we applied the USPT as a method to find differences in the network topology of multiple sclerosis patients and healthy controls. The new concept of the USPT of the functional brain network also allows interesting interpretations and may represent the highways of the brain.

  1. From Brain-Environment Connections to Temporal Dynamics and Social Interaction: Principles of Human Brain Function.

    PubMed

    Hari, Riitta

    2017-06-07

    Experimental data about brain function accumulate faster than does our understanding of how the brain works. To tackle some general principles at the grain level of behavior, I start from the omnipresent brain-environment connection that forces regularities of the physical world to shape the brain. Based on top-down processing, added by sparse sensory information, people are able to form individual "caricature worlds," which are similar enough to be shared among other people and which allow quick and purposeful reactions to abrupt changes. Temporal dynamics and social interaction in natural environments serve as further essential organizing principles of human brain function. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Topographic Brain Mapping: A Window on Brain Function?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Karniski, Walt M.

    1989-01-01

    The article reviews the method of topographic mapping of the brain's electrical activity. Multiple electroencephalogram (EEG) electrodes and computerized analysis of the EEG signal are used to generate maps of frequency and voltage (evoked potential). This relatively new technique holds promise in the evaluation of children with behavioral and…

  3. Topographic Brain Mapping: A Window on Brain Function?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Karniski, Walt M.

    1989-01-01

    The article reviews the method of topographic mapping of the brain's electrical activity. Multiple electroencephalogram (EEG) electrodes and computerized analysis of the EEG signal are used to generate maps of frequency and voltage (evoked potential). This relatively new technique holds promise in the evaluation of children with behavioral and…

  4. Graph analysis of functional brain networks for cognitive control of action in traumatic brain injury.

    PubMed

    Caeyenberghs, Karen; Leemans, Alexander; Heitger, Marcus H; Leunissen, Inge; Dhollander, Thijs; Sunaert, Stefan; Dupont, Patrick; Swinnen, Stephan P

    2012-04-01

    Patients with traumatic brain injury show clear impairments in behavioural flexibility and inhibition that often persist beyond the time of injury, affecting independent living and psychosocial functioning. Functional magnetic resonance imaging studies have shown that patients with traumatic brain injury typically show increased and more broadly dispersed frontal and parietal activity during performance of cognitive control tasks. We constructed binary and weighted functional networks and calculated their topological properties using a graph theoretical approach. Twenty-three adults with traumatic brain injury and 26 age-matched controls were instructed to switch between coordination modes while making spatially and temporally coupled circular motions with joysticks during event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging. Results demonstrated that switching performance was significantly lower in patients with traumatic brain injury compared with control subjects. Furthermore, although brain networks of both groups exhibited economical small-world topology, altered functional connectivity was demonstrated in patients with traumatic brain injury. In particular, compared with controls, patients with traumatic brain injury showed increased connectivity degree and strength, and higher values of local efficiency, suggesting adaptive mechanisms in this group. Finally, the degree of increased connectivity was significantly correlated with poorer switching task performance and more severe brain injury. We conclude that analysing the functional brain network connectivity provides new insights into understanding cognitive control changes following brain injury.

  5. Infrared Imaging System for Studying Brain Function

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mintz, Frederick; Mintz, Frederick; Gunapala, Sarath

    2007-01-01

    A proposed special-purpose infrared imaging system would be a compact, portable, less-expensive alternative to functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) systems heretofore used to study brain function. Whereas a typical fMRI system fills a large room, and must be magnetically isolated, this system would fit into a bicycle helmet. The system would include an assembly that would be mounted inside the padding in a modified bicycle helmet or other suitable headgear. The assembly would include newly designed infrared photodetectors and data-acquisition circuits on integrated-circuit chips on low-thermal-conductivity supports in evacuated housings (see figure) arranged in multiple rows and columns that would define image coordinates. Each housing would be spring-loaded against the wearer s head. The chips would be cooled by a small Stirling Engine mounted contiguous to, but thermally isolated from, the portions of the assembly in thermal contact with the wearer s head. Flexible wires or cables for transmitting data from the aforementioned chips would be routed to an integrated, multichannel transmitter and thence through the top of the assembly to a patch antenna on the outside of the helmet. The multiple streams of data from the infrared-detector chips would be sent to a remote site, where they would be processed, by software, into a three-dimensional display of evoked potentials that would represent firing neuronal bundles and thereby indicate locations of neuronal activity associated with mental or physical activity. The 3D images will be analogous to current fMRI images. The data would also be made available, in real-time, for comparison with data in local or internationally accessible relational databases that already exist in universities and research centers. Hence, this system could be used in research on, and for the diagnosis of response from the wearer s brain to physiological, psychological, and environmental changes in real time. The images would also be

  6. Brain serotonin and pituitary-adrenal functions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vernikos-Danellis, J.; Berger, P.; Barchas, J. D.

    1973-01-01

    It had been concluded by Scapagnini et al. (1971) that brain serotonin (5-HT) was involved in the regulation of the diurnal rhythm of the pituitary-adrenal system but not in the stress response. A study was conducted to investigate these findings further by evaluating the effects of altering brain 5-HT levels on the daily fluctuation of plasma corticosterone and on the response of the pituitary-adrenal system to a stressful or noxious stimulus in the rat. In a number of experiments brain 5-HT synthesis was inhibited with parachlorophenylalanine. In other tests it was tried to raise the level of brain 5-HT with precursors.

  7. Brain serotonin and pituitary-adrenal functions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vernikos-Danellis, J.; Berger, P.; Barchas, J. D.

    1973-01-01

    It had been concluded by Scapagnini et al. (1971) that brain serotonin (5-HT) was involved in the regulation of the diurnal rhythm of the pituitary-adrenal system but not in the stress response. A study was conducted to investigate these findings further by evaluating the effects of altering brain 5-HT levels on the daily fluctuation of plasma corticosterone and on the response of the pituitary-adrenal system to a stressful or noxious stimulus in the rat. In a number of experiments brain 5-HT synthesis was inhibited with parachlorophenylalanine. In other tests it was tried to raise the level of brain 5-HT with precursors.

  8. Gut microbial communities modulating brain development and function

    PubMed Central

    Al-Asmakh, Maha; Anuar, Farhana; Zadjali, Fahad; Rafter, Joseph; Pettersson, Sven

    2012-01-01

    Mammalian brain development is initiated in utero and internal and external environmental signals can affect this process all the way until adulthood. Recent observations suggest that one such external cue is the indigenous microbiota which has been shown to affect developmental programming of the brain. This may have consequences for brain maturation and function that impact on cognitive functions later in life. This review discusses these recent findings from a developmental perspective. PMID:22743758

  9. Gut microbial communities modulating brain development and function.

    PubMed

    Al-Asmakh, Maha; Anuar, Farhana; Zadjali, Fahad; Rafter, Joseph; Pettersson, Sven

    2012-01-01

    Mammalian brain development is initiated in utero and internal and external environmental signals can affect this process all the way until adulthood. Recent observations suggest that one such external cue is the indigenous microbiota which has been shown to affect developmental programming of the brain. This may have consequences for brain maturation and function that impact on cognitive functions later in life. This review discusses these recent findings from a developmental perspective.

  10. Insulin in the brain: sources, localization and functions.

    PubMed

    Ghasemi, Rasoul; Haeri, Ali; Dargahi, Leila; Mohamed, Zahurin; Ahmadiani, Abolhassan

    2013-02-01

    Historically, insulin is best known for its role in peripheral glucose homeostasis, and insulin signaling in the brain has received less attention. Insulin-independent brain glucose uptake has been the main reason for considering the brain as an insulin-insensitive organ. However, recent findings showing a high concentration of insulin in brain extracts, and expression of insulin receptors (IRs) in central nervous system tissues have gathered considerable attention over the sources, localization, and functions of insulin in the brain. This review summarizes the current status of knowledge of the peripheral and central sources of insulin in the brain, site-specific expression of IRs, and also neurophysiological functions of insulin including the regulation of food intake, weight control, reproduction, and cognition and memory formation. This review also considers the neuromodulatory and neurotrophic effects of insulin, resulting in proliferation, differentiation, and neurite outgrowth, introducing insulin as an attractive tool for neuroprotection against apoptosis, oxidative stress, beta amyloid toxicity, and brain ischemia.

  11. Can noninvasive brain stimulation enhance function in the ageing brain?

    PubMed

    Vallence, Ann-Maree; Goldsworthy, Mitchell R

    2014-01-01

    Advancing age is associated with cognitive and motor performance deficits and a reduced capacity for plasticity. Zimerman and colleagues (Zimerman M, Nitsch M, Giraux P, Gerloff C, Cohen LG, Hummel FC. Ann Neurol 73: 10-15, 2013) have recently shown that noninvasive brain stimulation can enhance behavioral improvements following training on a motor sequence task in older adults. The work is of high clinical importance given the rapidly growing ageing population and the accompanying costs to health systems globally.

  12. Estimating functional brain networks by incorporating a modularity prior

    PubMed Central

    Qiao, Lishan; Zhang, Han; Kim, Minjeong; Teng, Shenghua; Zhang, Limei; Shen, Dinggang

    2017-01-01

    Functional brain network analysis has become one principled way of revealing informative organization architectures in healthy brains, and providing sensitive biomarkers for diagnosis of neurological disorders. Prior to any post hoc analysis, however, a natural issue is how to construct “ideal” brain networks given, for example, a set of functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) time series associated with different brain regions. Although many methods have been developed, it is currently still an open field to estimate biologically meaningful and statistically robust brain networks due to our limited understanding of the human brain as well as complex noises in the observed data. Motivated by the fact that the brain is organized with modular structures, in this paper, we propose a novel functional brain network modeling scheme by encoding a modularity prior under a matrix-regularized network learning framework, and further formulate it as a sparse low-rank graph learning problem, which can be solved by an efficient optimization algorithm. Then, we apply the learned brain networks to identify patients with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) from normal controls. We achieved 89.01% classification accuracy even with a simple feature selection and classification pipeline, which significantly outperforms the conventional brain network construction methods. Moreover, we further explore brain network features that contributed to MCI identification, and discovered potential biomarkers for personalized diagnosis. PMID:27485752

  13. Sex hormones and brain dopamine functions.

    PubMed

    Sotomayor-Zarate, Ramon; Cruz, Gonzalo; Renard, Georgina M; Espinosa, Pedro; Ramirez, Victor D

    2014-01-01

    Sex hormones exert differential effects on a variety of sensitive tissues like the reproductive tract, gonads, liver, bone and adipose tissue, among others. In the brain, sex hormones act as neuroactive steroids regulating the function of neuroendocrine diencephalic structures like the hypothalamus. In addition, steroids can exert physiological effects upon cortical, limbic and midbrain structures, influencing different behaviors such as memory, learning, mood and reward. In the last three decades, the role of sex hormones on monoamine neurotransmitters in extra-hypothalamic areas related to motivated behaviors, learning and locomotion has been the focus of much research. The purpose of this thematic issue is to present the state of art concerning the effects of sex hormones on the neurochemical regulation of dopaminergic midbrain areas involved in neurobiological and pathological processes, such as addiction to drugs of abuse. We also discuss evidence of how neonatal exposure to sex hormones or endocrine disrupting chemicals can produce long-term changes on the neurochemical regulation of dopaminergic neurons in the limbic and midbrain areas.

  14. Wearable sensor network to study laterality of brain functions.

    PubMed

    Postolache, Gabriela B; Girao, Pedro S; Postolache, Octavian A

    2015-08-01

    In the last decade researches on laterality of brain functions have been reinvigorated. New models of lateralization of brain functions were proposed and new methods for understanding mechanisms of asymmetry between right and left brain functions were described. We design a system to study laterality of motor and autonomic nervous system based on wearable sensors network. A mobile application was developed for analysis of upper and lower limbs movements, cardiac and respiratory function. The functionalities and experience gained with deployment of the system are described.

  15. Persistent Postconcussive Symptoms Are Accompanied by Decreased Functional Brain Oxygenation.

    PubMed

    Helmich, Ingo; Saluja, Rajeet S; Lausberg, Hedda; Kempe, Mathias; Furley, Philip; Berger, Alisa; Chen, Jen-Kai; Ptito, Alain

    2015-01-01

    Diagnostic methods are considered a major concern in the determination of mild traumatic brain injury. The authors examined brain oxygenation patterns in subjects with severe and minor persistent postconcussive difficulties and a healthy control group during working memory tasks in prefrontal brain regions using functional near-infrared spectroscopy. The results demonstrated decreased working memory performances among concussed subjects with severe postconcussive symptoms that were accompanied by decreased brain oxygenation patterns. An association appears to exist between decreased brain oxygenation, poor performance of working memory tasks, and increased symptom severity scores in subjects suffering from persistent postconcussive symptoms.

  16. Graph Analysis of Functional Brain Networks for Cognitive Control of Action in Traumatic Brain Injury

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Caeyenberghs, Karen; Leemans, Alexander; Heitger, Marcus H.; Leunissen, Inge; Dhollander, Thijs; Sunaert, Stefan; Dupont, Patrick; Swinnen, Stephan P.

    2012-01-01

    Patients with traumatic brain injury show clear impairments in behavioural flexibility and inhibition that often persist beyond the time of injury, affecting independent living and psychosocial functioning. Functional magnetic resonance imaging studies have shown that patients with traumatic brain injury typically show increased and more broadly…

  17. Graph Analysis of Functional Brain Networks for Cognitive Control of Action in Traumatic Brain Injury

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Caeyenberghs, Karen; Leemans, Alexander; Heitger, Marcus H.; Leunissen, Inge; Dhollander, Thijs; Sunaert, Stefan; Dupont, Patrick; Swinnen, Stephan P.

    2012-01-01

    Patients with traumatic brain injury show clear impairments in behavioural flexibility and inhibition that often persist beyond the time of injury, affecting independent living and psychosocial functioning. Functional magnetic resonance imaging studies have shown that patients with traumatic brain injury typically show increased and more broadly…

  18. The modular and integrative functional architecture of the human brain

    PubMed Central

    Bertolero, Maxwell A.; Yeo, B. T. Thomas; D’Esposito, Mark

    2015-01-01

    Network-based analyses of brain imaging data consistently reveal distinct modules and connector nodes with diverse global connectivity across the modules. How discrete the functions of modules are, how dependent the computational load of each module is to the other modules’ processing, and what the precise role of connector nodes is for between-module communication remains underspecified. Here, we use a network model of the brain derived from resting-state functional MRI (rs-fMRI) data and investigate the modular functional architecture of the human brain by analyzing activity at different types of nodes in the network across 9,208 experiments of 77 cognitive tasks in the BrainMap database. Using an author–topic model of cognitive functions, we find a strong spatial correspondence between the cognitive functions and the network’s modules, suggesting that each module performs a discrete cognitive function. Crucially, activity at local nodes within the modules does not increase in tasks that require more cognitive functions, demonstrating the autonomy of modules’ functions. However, connector nodes do exhibit increased activity when more cognitive functions are engaged in a task. Moreover, connector nodes are located where brain activity is associated with many different cognitive functions. Connector nodes potentially play a role in between-module communication that maintains the modular function of the brain. Together, these findings provide a network account of the brain’s modular yet integrated implementation of cognitive functions. PMID:26598686

  19. Manifold learning on brain functional networks in aging.

    PubMed

    Qiu, Anqi; Lee, Annie; Tan, Mingzhen; Chung, Moo K

    2015-02-01

    We propose a new analysis framework to utilize the full information of brain functional networks for computing the mean of a set of brain functional networks and embedding brain functional networks into a low-dimensional space in which traditional regression and classification analyses can be easily employed. For this, we first represent the brain functional network by a symmetric positive matrix computed using sparse inverse covariance estimation. We then impose a Log-Euclidean Riemannian manifold structure on brain functional networks whose norm gives a convenient and practical way to define a mean. Finally, based on the fact that the computation of linear operations can be done in the tangent space of this Riemannian manifold, we adopt Locally Linear Embedding (LLE) to the Log-Euclidean Riemannian manifold space in order to embed the brain functional networks into a low-dimensional space. We show that the integration of the Log-Euclidean manifold with LLE provides more efficient and succinct representation of the functional network and facilitates regression analysis, such as ridge regression, on the brain functional network to more accurately predict age when compared to that of the Euclidean space of functional networks with LLE. Interestingly, using the Log-Euclidean analysis framework, we demonstrate the integration and segregation of cortical-subcortical networks as well as among the salience, executive, and emotional networks across lifespan.

  20. The Disconnected Brain and Executive Function Decline in Aging.

    PubMed

    Fjell, Anders M; Sneve, Markus H; Grydeland, Håkon; Storsve, Andreas B; Walhovd, Kristine B

    2017-03-01

    Higher order speeded cognitive abilities depend on efficient coordination of activity across the brain, rendering them vulnerable to age reductions in structural and functional brain connectivity. The concept of "disconnected aging" has been invoked, suggesting that degeneration of connections between distant brain regions cause cognitive reductions. However, it has not been shown that changes in cognitive functions over time can be explained by simultaneous changes in brain connectivity. We followed 119 young and middle-aged (23-52 years) and older (63-86 years) adults for 3.3 years with repeated assessments of structural and functional brain connectivity and executive functions. We found unique age-related longitudinal reductions in executive function over and above changes in more basic cognitive processes. Intriguingly, 82.5% of the age-related decline in executive function could be explained by changes in connectivity over time. While both structural and functional connectivity changes were related to longitudinal reductions in executive function, only structural connectivity change could explain the age-specific decline. This suggests that the major part of the age-related reductions in executive function can be attributed to micro- and macrostructural alterations in brain connectivity. Although correlational in nature, we believe the present results constitute evidence for a "disconnected brain" view on cognitive aging. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  1. Sugar for the brain: the role of glucose in physiological and pathological brain function.

    PubMed

    Mergenthaler, Philipp; Lindauer, Ute; Dienel, Gerald A; Meisel, Andreas

    2013-10-01

    The mammalian brain depends upon glucose as its main source of energy, and tight regulation of glucose metabolism is critical for brain physiology. Consistent with its critical role for physiological brain function, disruption of normal glucose metabolism as well as its interdependence with cell death pathways forms the pathophysiological basis for many brain disorders. Here, we review recent advances in understanding how glucose metabolism sustains basic brain physiology. We synthesize these findings to form a comprehensive picture of the cooperation required between different systems and cell types, and the specific breakdowns in this cooperation that lead to disease.

  2. Sugar for the brain: the role of glucose in physiological and pathological brain function

    PubMed Central

    Mergenthaler, Philipp; Lindauer, Ute; Dienel, Gerald A.; Meisel, Andreas

    2013-01-01

    The mammalian brain depends upon glucose as its main source of energy, and tight regulation of glucose metabolism is critical for brain physiology. Consistent with its critical role for physiological brain function, disruption of normal glucose metabolism as well as its interdependence with cell death pathways forms the pathophysiological basis for many brain disorders. Here, we review recent advances in understanding how glucose metabolism sustains basic brain physiology. We aim at synthesizing these findings to form a comprehensive picture of the cooperation required between different systems and cell types, and the specific breakdowns in this cooperation which lead to disease. PMID:23968694

  3. Understanding entangled cerebral networks: a prerequisite for restoring brain function with brain-computer interfaces.

    PubMed

    Mandonnet, Emmanuel; Duffau, Hugues

    2014-01-01

    Historically, cerebral processing has been conceptualized as a framework based on statically localized functions. However, a growing amount of evidence supports a hodotopical (delocalized) and flexible organization. A number of studies have reported absence of a permanent neurological deficit after massive surgical resections of eloquent brain tissue. These results highlight the tremendous plastic potential of the brain. Understanding anatomo-functional correlates underlying this cerebral reorganization is a prerequisite to restore brain functions through brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) in patients with cerebral diseases, or even to potentiate brain functions in healthy individuals. Here, we review current knowledge of neural networks that could be utilized in the BCIs that enable movements and language. To this end, intraoperative electrical stimulation in awake patients provides valuable information on the cerebral functional maps, their connectomics and plasticity. Overall, these studies indicate that the complex cerebral circuitry that underpins interactions between action, cognition and behavior should be throughly investigated before progress in BCI approaches can be achieved.

  4. The Dynamic Dielectric at a Brain Functional Site and an EM Wave Approach to Functional Brain Imaging

    PubMed Central

    Li, X. P.; Xia, Q.; Qu, D.; Wu, T. C.; Yang, D. G.; Hao, W. D.; Jiang, X.; Li, X. M.

    2014-01-01

    Functional brain imaging has tremendous applications. The existing methods for functional brain imaging include functional Magnetic Resonant Imaging (fMRI), scalp electroencephalography (EEG), implanted EEG, magnetoencephalography (MEG) and Positron Emission Tomography (PET), which have been widely and successfully applied to various brain imaging studies. To develop a new method for functional brain imaging, here we show that the dielectric at a brain functional site has a dynamic nature, varying with local neuronal activation as the permittivity of the dielectric varies with the ion concentration of the extracellular fluid surrounding neurons in activation. Therefore, the neuronal activation can be sensed by a radiofrequency (RF) electromagnetic (EM) wave propagating through the site as the phase change of the EM wave varies with the permittivity. Such a dynamic nature of the dielectric at a brain functional site provides the basis for an RF EM wave approach to detecting and imaging neuronal activation at brain functional sites, leading to an RF EM wave approach to functional brain imaging. PMID:25367217

  5. The dynamic dielectric at a brain functional site and an EM wave approach to functional brain imaging.

    PubMed

    Li, X P; Xia, Q; Qu, D; Wu, T C; Yang, D G; Hao, W D; Jiang, X; Li, X M

    2014-11-04

    Functional brain imaging has tremendous applications. The existing methods for functional brain imaging include functional Magnetic Resonant Imaging (fMRI), scalp electroencephalography (EEG), implanted EEG, magnetoencephalography (MEG) and Positron Emission Tomography (PET), which have been widely and successfully applied to various brain imaging studies. To develop a new method for functional brain imaging, here we show that the dielectric at a brain functional site has a dynamic nature, varying with local neuronal activation as the permittivity of the dielectric varies with the ion concentration of the extracellular fluid surrounding neurons in activation. Therefore, the neuronal activation can be sensed by a radiofrequency (RF) electromagnetic (EM) wave propagating through the site as the phase change of the EM wave varies with the permittivity. Such a dynamic nature of the dielectric at a brain functional site provides the basis for an RF EM wave approach to detecting and imaging neuronal activation at brain functional sites, leading to an RF EM wave approach to functional brain imaging.

  6. Centrality of Social Interaction in Human Brain Function.

    PubMed

    Hari, Riitta; Henriksson, Linda; Malinen, Sanna; Parkkonen, Lauri

    2015-10-07

    People are embedded in social interaction that shapes their brains throughout lifetime. Instead of emerging from lower-level cognitive functions, social interaction could be the default mode via which humans communicate with their environment. Should this hypothesis be true, it would have profound implications on how we think about brain functions and how we dissect and simulate them. We suggest that the research on the brain basis of social cognition and interaction should move from passive spectator science to studies including engaged participants and simultaneous recordings from the brains of the interacting persons.

  7. Profiles of Executive Function Across Children with Distinct Brain Disorders: Traumatic Brain Injury, Stroke, and Brain Tumor.

    PubMed

    Araujo, Gabriel C; Antonini, Tanya N; Anderson, Vicki; Vannatta, Kathryn A; Salley, Christina G; Bigler, Erin D; Taylor, H Gerry; Gerhardt, Cynthia; Rubin, Kenneth; Dennis, Maureen; Lo, Warren; Mackay, Mark T; Gordon, Anne; Hajek Koterba, Christine; Gomes, Alison; Greenham, Mardee; Owen Yeates, Keith

    2017-08-01

    This study examined whether children with distinct brain disorders show different profiles of strengths and weaknesses in executive functions, and differ from children without brain disorder. Participants were children with traumatic brain injury (N=82; 8-13 years of age), arterial ischemic stroke (N=36; 6-16 years of age), and brain tumor (N=74; 9-18 years of age), each with a corresponding matched comparison group consisting of children with orthopedic injury (N=61), asthma (N=15), and classmates without medical illness (N=68), respectively. Shifting, inhibition, and working memory were assessed, respectively, using three Test of Everyday Attention: Children's Version (TEA-Ch) subtests: Creature Counting, Walk-Don't-Walk, and Code Transmission. Comparison groups did not differ in TEA-Ch performance and were merged into a single control group. Profile analysis was used to examine group differences in TEA-Ch subtest scaled scores after controlling for maternal education and age. As a whole, children with brain disorder performed more poorly than controls on measures of executive function. Relative to controls, the three brain injury groups showed significantly different profiles of executive functions. Importantly, post hoc tests revealed that performance on TEA-Ch subtests differed among the brain disorder groups. Results suggest that different childhood brain disorders result in distinct patterns of executive function deficits that differ from children without brain disorder. Implications for clinical practice and future research are discussed. (JINS, 2017, 23, 529-538).

  8. Development of Large-Scale Functional Brain Networks in Children

    PubMed Central

    Supekar, Kaustubh; Musen, Mark; Menon, Vinod

    2009-01-01

    The ontogeny of large-scale functional organization of the human brain is not well understood. Here we use network analysis of intrinsic functional connectivity to characterize the organization of brain networks in 23 children (ages 7–9 y) and 22 young-adults (ages 19–22 y). Comparison of network properties, including path-length, clustering-coefficient, hierarchy, and regional connectivity, revealed that although children and young-adults' brains have similar “small-world” organization at the global level, they differ significantly in hierarchical organization and interregional connectivity. We found that subcortical areas were more strongly connected with primary sensory, association, and paralimbic areas in children, whereas young-adults showed stronger cortico-cortical connectivity between paralimbic, limbic, and association areas. Further, combined analysis of functional connectivity with wiring distance measures derived from white-matter fiber tracking revealed that the development of large-scale brain networks is characterized by weakening of short-range functional connectivity and strengthening of long-range functional connectivity. Importantly, our findings show that the dynamic process of over-connectivity followed by pruning, which rewires connectivity at the neuronal level, also operates at the systems level, helping to reconfigure and rebalance subcortical and paralimbic connectivity in the developing brain. Our study demonstrates the usefulness of network analysis of brain connectivity to elucidate key principles underlying functional brain maturation, paving the way for novel studies of disrupted brain connectivity in neurodevelopmental disorders such as autism. PMID:19621066

  9. Effect of occlusal support by implant prostheses on brain function.

    PubMed

    Okamoto, Naoko

    2011-10-01

    The present study was carried out to identify how gum chewing with and without occlusal support by implant prostheses affects brain function as well as chewing function. Twenty-four subjects rehabilitated with implant-supported fixed prostheses were evaluated. An electroencephalograph (EEG) (ESA-Pro) and mandibular kinesiograph (Bio PAK(®)) wear used to measure brain function and chewing function, respectively, before and after gum chewing with and without an implant superstructure. Based on brain function estimated by the Dα values derived from measurement data, the subjects were divided into the normal region group (including the sub-normal region group) (n=15; Dα≥0.952) and the impaired region group (n=9; Dα<0.952). All the data were statistically analyzed using the Wilcoxon test (α=0.05). Brain function in the normal region group showed no change after gum chewing, whether or not an implant superstructure was in place (p>0.05). However, brain function in the impaired region group showed significant improvement after gum chewing (p<0.05). Seven of 9 subjects using an implant superstructure in impaired region group indicated an increase or no change in brain function compared to the results without an implant superstructure. In the impaired region group, there was a high positive correlation between brain function and masticatory movement (γ=0.75). Subjects in the impaired region group revealed a strong positive correlation between brain function and masticatory movement, indicating that occlusal support by implant-supported fixed prostheses has the potential to enhance brain function. Copyright © 2011 Japan Prosthodontic Society. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Gut Microbiota and Brain Function: An Evolving Field in Neuroscience.

    PubMed

    Foster, Jane A; Lyte, Mark; Meyer, Emeran; Cryan, John F

    2016-05-01

    There is a growing appreciation of the importance of gut microbiota to health and disease. This has been driven by advances in sequencing technology and recent findings demonstrating the important role of microbiota in common health disorders such as obesity. Moreover, the potential role of gut microbiota in influencing brain function, behavior, and mental health has attracted the attention of neuroscientists and psychiatrists. At the 29(th) International College of Neuropsychopharmacology (CINP) World Congress held in Vancouver, Canada, in June 2014, a group of experts presented the symposium, "Gut microbiota and brain function: Relevance to psychiatric disorders" to review the latest findings in how gut microbiota may play a role in brain function, behavior, and disease. The symposium covered a broad range of topics, including gut microbiota and neuroendocrine function, the influence of gut microbiota on behavior, probiotics as regulators of brain and behavior, and imaging the gut-brain axis in humans. This report provides an overview of these presentations.

  11. Using Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging to Detect Preserved Function in a Preterm Infant with Brain Injury.

    PubMed

    Herzmann, Charlotte; Zubiaurre-Elorza, Leire; Wild, Conor J; Linke, Annika C; Han, Victor K; Lee, David S C; Cusack, Rhodri

    2017-10-01

    We studied developmental plasticity using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in a preterm infant with brain injury on structural MRI. fMRI showed preserved brain function and subsequent neurodevelopment was within the normal range. Multimodal neuroimaging including fMRI can improve understanding of neural plasticity after preterm birth and brain injury. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Effects of Chronic Consumption of Sugar-Enriched Diets on Brain Metabolism and Insulin Sensitivity in Adult Yucatan Minipigs

    PubMed Central

    Ochoa, Melissa; Malbert, Charles-Henri; Meurice, Paul; Val-Laillet, David

    2016-01-01

    Excessive sugar intake might increase the risk to develop eating disorders via an altered reward circuitry, but it remains unknown whether different sugar sources induce different neural effects and whether these effects are dependent from body weight. Therefore, we compared the effects of three high-fat and isocaloric diets varying only in their carbohydrate sources on brain activity of reward-related regions, and assessed whether brain activity is dependent on insulin sensitivity. Twenty-four minipigs underwent 18FDG PET brain imaging following 7-month intake of high-fat diets of which 20% in dry matter weight (36.3% of metabolisable energy) was provided by starch, glucose or fructose (n = 8 per diet). Animals were then subjected to a euglycemic hyperinsulinemic clamp to determine peripheral insulin sensitivity. After a 7-month diet treatment, all groups had substantial increases in body weight (from 36.02±0.85 to 63.33±0.81 kg; P<0.0001), regardless of the diet. All groups presented similar insulin sensitivity index (ISI = 1.39±0.10 mL·min-1·μUI·kg). Compared to starch, chronic exposure to fructose and glucose induced bilateral brain activations, i.e. increased basal cerebral glucose metabolism, in several reward-related brain regions including the anterior and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, the orbitofrontal cortex, the anterior cingulate cortex, the caudate and putamen. The lack of differences in insulin sensitivity index and body weight suggests that the observed differences in basal brain glucose metabolism are not related to differences in peripheral insulin sensitivity and weight gain. The differences in basal brain metabolism in reward-related brain areas suggest the onset of cerebral functional alterations induced by chronic consumption of dietary sugars. Further studies should explore the underlying mechanisms, such as the availability of intestinal and brain sugar transporter, or the appearance of addictive-like behavioral correlates of these

  13. Evidence for hubs in human functional brain networks

    PubMed Central

    Power, Jonathan D; Schlaggar, Bradley L; Lessov-Schlaggar, Christina N; Petersen, Steven E

    2013-01-01

    Summary Hubs integrate and distribute information in powerful ways due to the number and positioning of their contacts in a network. Several resting state functional connectivity MRI reports have implicated regions of the default mode system as brain hubs; we demonstrate that previous degree-based approaches to hub identification may have identified portions of large brain systems rather than critical nodes of brain networks. We utilize two methods to identify hub-like brain regions: 1) finding network nodes that participate in multiple sub-networks of the brain, and 2) finding spatial locations where several systems are represented within a small volume. These methods converge on a distributed set of regions that differ from previous reports on hubs. This work identifies regions that support multiple systems, leading to spatially constrained predictions about brain function that may be tested in terms of lesions, evoked responses, and dynamic patterns of activity. PMID:23972601

  14. Beyond localized and distributed accounts of brain functions. Comment on “Understanding brain networks and brain organization” by Pessoa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cauda, Franco; Costa, Tommaso; Tamietto, Marco

    2014-09-01

    Recent evidence in cognitive neuroscience lends support to the idea that network models of brain architecture provide a privileged access to the understanding of the relation between brain organization and cognitive processes [1]. The core perspective holds that cognitive processes depend on the interactions among distributed neuronal populations and brain structures, and that the impact of a given region on behavior largely depends on its pattern of anatomical and functional connectivity [2,3].

  15. Joint Attention and Brain Functional Connectivity in Infants and Toddlers

    PubMed Central

    Elison, Jed T.; Feczko, Eric; Todorov, Alexandre; Wolff, Jason J.; Kandala, Sridhar; Adams, Chloe M.; Snyder, Abraham Z.; Lewis, John D.; Estes, Annette M.; Zwaigenbaum, Lonnie; Botteron, Kelly N.; McKinstry, Robert C.; Constantino, John N.; Evans, Alan; Hazlett, Heather C.; Dager, Stephen; Paterson, Sarah J.; Schultz, Robert T.; Styner, Martin A.; Gerig, Guido; Das, Samir; Kostopoulos, Penelope; Schlaggar, Bradley L.; Petersen, Steven E.; Piven, Joseph; Pruett, John R.

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Initiating joint attention (IJA), the behavioral instigation of coordinated focus of 2 people on an object, emerges over the first 2 years of life and supports social-communicative functioning related to the healthy development of aspects of language, empathy, and theory of mind. Deficits in IJA provide strong early indicators for autism spectrum disorder, and therapies targeting joint attention have shown tremendous promise. However, the brain systems underlying IJA in early childhood are poorly understood, due in part to significant methodological challenges in imaging localized brain function that supports social behaviors during the first 2 years of life. Herein, we show that the functional organization of the brain is intimately related to the emergence of IJA using functional connectivity magnetic resonance imaging and dimensional behavioral assessments in a large semilongitudinal cohort of infants and toddlers. In particular, though functional connections spanning the brain are involved in IJA, the strongest brain-behavior associations cluster within connections between a small subset of functional brain networks; namely between the visual network and dorsal attention network and between the visual network and posterior cingulate aspects of the default mode network. These observations mark the earliest known description of how functional brain systems underlie a burgeoning fundamental social behavior, may help improve the design of targeted therapies for neurodevelopmental disorders, and, more generally, elucidate physiological mechanisms essential to healthy social behavior development. PMID:28062515

  16. The effects of vitamin D on brain development and adult brain function.

    PubMed

    Kesby, James P; Eyles, Darryl W; Burne, Thomas H J; McGrath, John J

    2011-12-05

    A role for vitamin D in brain development and function has been gaining support over the last decade. Multiple lines of evidence suggest that this vitamin is actually a neuroactive steroid that acts on brain development, leading to alterations in brain neurochemistry and adult brain function. Early deficiencies have been linked with neuropsychiatric disorders, such as schizophrenia, and adult deficiencies have been associated with a host of adverse brain outcomes, including Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, depression and cognitive decline. This review summarises the current state of research on the actions of vitamin D in the brain and the consequences of deficiencies in this vitamin. Furthermore, we discuss specific implications of vitamin D status on the neurotransmitter, dopamine.

  17. Connectivity and functional profiling of abnormal brain structures in pedophilia

    PubMed Central

    Poeppl, Timm B.; Eickhoff, Simon B.; Fox, Peter T.; Laird, Angela R.; Rupprecht, Rainer; Langguth, Berthold; Bzdok, Danilo

    2015-01-01

    Despite its 0.5–1% lifetime prevalence in men and its general societal relevance, neuroimaging investigations in pedophilia are scarce. Preliminary findings indicate abnormal brain structure and function. However, no study has yet linked structural alterations in pedophiles to both connectional and functional properties of the aberrant hotspots. The relationship between morphological alterations and brain function in pedophilia as well as their contribution to its psychopathology thus remain unclear. First, we assessed bimodal connectivity of structurally altered candidate regions using meta-analytic connectivity modeling (MACM) and resting-state correlations employing openly accessible data. We compared the ensuing connectivity maps to the activation likelihood estimation (ALE) maps of a recent quantitative meta-analysis of brain activity during processing of sexual stimuli. Second, we functionally characterized the structurally altered regions employing meta-data of a large-scale neuroimaging database. Candidate regions were functionally connected to key areas for processing of sexual stimuli. Moreover, we found that the functional role of structurally altered brain regions in pedophilia relates to nonsexual emotional as well as neurocognitive and executive functions, previously reported to be impaired in pedophiles. Our results suggest that structural brain alterations affect neural networks for sexual processing by way of disrupted functional connectivity, which may entail abnormal sexual arousal patterns. The findings moreover indicate that structural alterations account for common affective and neurocognitive impairments in pedophilia. The present multi-modal integration of brain structure and function analyses links sexual and nonsexual psychopathology in pedophilia. PMID:25733379

  18. Connectivity and functional profiling of abnormal brain structures in pedophilia.

    PubMed

    Poeppl, Timm B; Eickhoff, Simon B; Fox, Peter T; Laird, Angela R; Rupprecht, Rainer; Langguth, Berthold; Bzdok, Danilo

    2015-06-01

    Despite its 0.5-1% lifetime prevalence in men and its general societal relevance, neuroimaging investigations in pedophilia are scarce. Preliminary findings indicate abnormal brain structure and function. However, no study has yet linked structural alterations in pedophiles to both connectional and functional properties of the aberrant hotspots. The relationship between morphological alterations and brain function in pedophilia as well as their contribution to its psychopathology thus remain unclear. First, we assessed bimodal connectivity of structurally altered candidate regions using meta-analytic connectivity modeling (MACM) and resting-state correlations employing openly accessible data. We compared the ensuing connectivity maps to the activation likelihood estimation (ALE) maps of a recent quantitative meta-analysis of brain activity during processing of sexual stimuli. Second, we functionally characterized the structurally altered regions employing meta-data of a large-scale neuroimaging database. Candidate regions were functionally connected to key areas for processing of sexual stimuli. Moreover, we found that the functional role of structurally altered brain regions in pedophilia relates to nonsexual emotional as well as neurocognitive and executive functions, previously reported to be impaired in pedophiles. Our results suggest that structural brain alterations affect neural networks for sexual processing by way of disrupted functional connectivity, which may entail abnormal sexual arousal patterns. The findings moreover indicate that structural alterations account for common affective and neurocognitive impairments in pedophilia. The present multimodal integration of brain structure and function analyses links sexual and nonsexual psychopathology in pedophilia. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  19. Hierarchical organization of brain functional networks during visual tasks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhuo, Zhao; Cai, Shi-Min; Fu, Zhong-Qian; Zhang, Jie

    2011-09-01

    The functional network of the brain is known to demonstrate modular structure over different hierarchical scales. In this paper, we systematically investigated the hierarchical modular organizations of the brain functional networks that are derived from the extent of phase synchronization among high-resolution EEG time series during a visual task. In particular, we compare the modular structure of the functional network from EEG channels with that of the anatomical parcellation of the brain cortex. Our results show that the modular architectures of brain functional networks correspond well to those from the anatomical structures over different levels of hierarchy. Most importantly, we find that the consistency between the modular structures of the functional network and the anatomical network becomes more pronounced in terms of vision, sensory, vision-temporal, motor cortices during the visual task, which implies that the strong modularity in these areas forms the functional basis for the visual task. The structure-function relationship further reveals that the phase synchronization of EEG time series in the same anatomical group is much stronger than that of EEG time series from different anatomical groups during the task and that the hierarchical organization of functional brain network may be a consequence of functional segmentation of the brain cortex.

  20. Hierarchical organization of brain functional networks during visual tasks.

    PubMed

    Zhuo, Zhao; Cai, Shi-Min; Fu, Zhong-Qian; Zhang, Jie

    2011-09-01

    The functional network of the brain is known to demonstrate modular structure over different hierarchical scales. In this paper, we systematically investigated the hierarchical modular organizations of the brain functional networks that are derived from the extent of phase synchronization among high-resolution EEG time series during a visual task. In particular, we compare the modular structure of the functional network from EEG channels with that of the anatomical parcellation of the brain cortex. Our results show that the modular architectures of brain functional networks correspond well to those from the anatomical structures over different levels of hierarchy. Most importantly, we find that the consistency between the modular structures of the functional network and the anatomical network becomes more pronounced in terms of vision, sensory, vision-temporal, motor cortices during the visual task, which implies that the strong modularity in these areas forms the functional basis for the visual task. The structure-function relationship further reveals that the phase synchronization of EEG time series in the same anatomical group is much stronger than that of EEG time series from different anatomical groups during the task and that the hierarchical organization of functional brain network may be a consequence of functional segmentation of the brain cortex.

  1. Functional vision in children with perinatal brain damage.

    PubMed

    Alimović, Sonja; Jurić, Nikolina; Bošnjak, Vlatka Mejaški

    2014-09-01

    Many authors have discussed the effects of visual stimulations on visual functions, but there is no research about the effects on using vision in everyday activities (i.e. functional vision). Children with perinatal brain damage can develop cerebral visual impairment with preserved visual functions (e.g. visual acuity, contrast sensitivity) but poor functional vision. Our aim was to discuss the importance of assessing and stimulating functional vision in children with perinatal brain damage. We assessed visual functions (grating visual acuity, contrast sensitivity) and functional vision (the ability of maintaining visual attention and using vision in communication) in 99 children with perinatal brain damage and visual impairment. All children were assessed before and after the visual stimulation program. Our first assessment results showed that children with perinatal brain damage had significantly more problems in functional vision than in basic visual functions. During the visual stimulation program both variables of functional vision and contrast sensitivity improved significantly, while grating acuity improved only in 2.7% of children. We also found that improvement of visual attention significantly correlated to improvement on all other functions describing vision. Therefore, functional vision assessment, especially assessment of visual attention is indispensable in early monitoring of child with perinatal brain damage.

  2. Let thy left brain know what thy right brain doeth: Inter-hemispheric compensation of functional deficits after brain damage.

    PubMed

    Bartolomeo, Paolo; Thiebaut de Schotten, Michel

    2016-12-01

    Recent evidence revealed the importance of inter-hemispheric communication for the compensation of functional deficits after brain damage. This review summarises the biological consequences observed using histology as well as the longitudinal findings measured with magnetic resonance imaging methods in brain damaged animals and patients. In particular, we discuss the impact of post-stroke brain hyperactivity on functional recovery in relation to time. The reviewed evidence also suggests that the proportion of the preserved functional network both in the lesioned and in the intact hemispheres, rather than the simple lesion location, determines the extent of functional recovery. Hence, future research exploring longitudinal changes in patients with brain damage may unveil potential biomarkers underlying functional recovery.

  3. Can we observe epigenetic effects on human brain function?

    PubMed

    Nikolova, Yuliya S; Hariri, Ahmad R

    2015-07-01

    Imaging genetics has identified many contributions of DNA sequence variation to individual differences in brain function, behavior, and risk for psychopathology. Recent studies have extended this work beyond the genome by mapping epigenetic differences, specifically gene methylation in peripherally assessed DNA, onto variability in behaviorally and clinically relevant brain function. These data have generated understandable enthusiasm for the potential of such research to illuminate biological mechanisms of risk. We use our research on the effects of genetic and epigenetic variation in the human serotonin transporter on brain function to generate a guardedly optimistic opinion that the available data encourage continued research in this direction, and suggest strategies to promote faster progress.

  4. Optogenetic probing of functional brain circuitry.

    PubMed

    Mancuso, James J; Kim, Jinsook; Lee, Soojung; Tsuda, Sachiko; Chow, Nicholas B H; Augustine, George J

    2011-01-01

    Recently developed optogenetic technologies offer the promise of high-speed mapping of brain circuitry. Genetically targeted light-gated channels and pumps, such as channelrhodopsins and halorhodopsin, allow optical control of neuronal activity with high spatial and temporal resolution. Optogenetic probes of neuronal activity, such as Clomeleon and Mermaid, allow light to be used to monitor the activity of a genetically defined population of neurons. Combining these two complementary sets of optogenetic probes will make it possible to perform all-optical circuit mapping. Owing to the improved efficiency and higher speed of data acquisition, this hybrid approach should enable high-throughput mapping of brain circuitry.

  5. Environmental challenge impairs prefrontal brain functions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balazs, L.; Czigler, I.; Grosz, A.; Emri, M.; Mikecz, P.; Szakall, Sz.; Tron, L.

    2005-08-01

    Hypoxic challenge might provide insights to the mechanisms of how environmental stressors alter human abilities. Similarities between the possible neural consequences of hypoxia and those of weightlessness and cosmic irradiation endorse this possibility.We studied brain electrical activity and behavioural measures in various cognitive reaction time (RT) tasks in hypoxic conditions. In one experiment changes in regional cerebral blood flow were measured. The findings were indicative of the particular vulnerability of the prefrontal brain areas to hypoxia.It is suggested that hypoxia may be used as an analogue to investigate the effect of environmental stressors arising in space flight on central nervous system (CNS).

  6. Mapping functional brain development: Building a social brain through interactive specialization.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Mark H; Grossmann, Tobias; Cohen Kadosh, Kathrin

    2009-01-01

    The authors review a viewpoint on human functional brain development, interactive specialization (IS), and its application to the emerging network of cortical regions referred to as the social brain. They advance the IS view in 2 new ways. First, they extend IS into a domain to which it has not previously been applied--the emergence of social cognition and mentalizing computations in the brain. Second, they extend the implications of the IS view from the emergence of specialized functions within a cortical region to a focus on how different cortical regions with complementary functions become orchestrated into networks during human postnatal development.

  7. Complex Networks - A Key to Understanding Brain Function

    ScienceCinema

    Olaf Sporns

    2016-07-12

    The brain is a complex network of neurons, engaging in spontaneous and evoked activity that is thought to be the main substrate of mental life.  How this complex system works together to process information and generate coherent cognitive states, even consciousness, is not yet well understood.  In my talk I will review recent studies that have revealed characteristic structural and functional attributes of brain networks, and discuss efforts to build computational models of the brain that are informed by our growing knowledge of brain anatomy and physiology.

  8. Complex Networks - A Key to Understanding Brain Function

    SciTech Connect

    Sporns, Olaf

    2008-01-23

    The brain is a complex network of neurons, engaging in spontaneous and evoked activity that is thought to be the main substrate of mental life. How this complex system works together to process information and generate coherent cognitive states, even consciousness, is not yet well understood. In my talk I will review recent studies that have revealed characteristic structural and functional attributes of brain networks, and discuss efforts to build computational models of the brain that are informed by our growing knowledge of brain anatomy and physiology.

  9. Complex Networks - A Key to Understanding Brain Function

    SciTech Connect

    Olaf Sporns

    2008-01-23

    The brain is a complex network of neurons, engaging in spontaneous and evoked activity that is thought to be the main substrate of mental life.  How this complex system works together to process information and generate coherent cognitive states, even consciousness, is not yet well understood.  In my talk I will review recent studies that have revealed characteristic structural and functional attributes of brain networks, and discuss efforts to build computational models of the brain that are informed by our growing knowledge of brain anatomy and physiology.

  10. Mapping Functional Brain Development: Building a Social Brain through Interactive Specialization

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Johnson, Mark H.; Grossmann, Tobias; Kadosh, Kathrin Cohen

    2009-01-01

    The authors review a viewpoint on human functional brain development, interactive specialization (IS), and its application to the emerging network of cortical regions referred to as the "social brain." They advance the IS view in 2 new ways. First, they extend IS into a domain to which it has not previously been applied--the emergence of social…

  11. Mapping Functional Brain Development: Building a Social Brain through Interactive Specialization

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Johnson, Mark H.; Grossmann, Tobias; Kadosh, Kathrin Cohen

    2009-01-01

    The authors review a viewpoint on human functional brain development, interactive specialization (IS), and its application to the emerging network of cortical regions referred to as the "social brain." They advance the IS view in 2 new ways. First, they extend IS into a domain to which it has not previously been applied--the emergence of social…

  12. Confounding Brain Stem Function During Pediatric Brain Death Determination: Two Case Reports.

    PubMed

    Hansen, Gregory; Joffe, Ari R

    2017-06-01

    A patient who has been declared brain dead is considered to be both legally and clinically dead. However, we report 2 pediatric cases in which the patients demonstrated clinical signs of brain stem function that are not recognized or tested in current Canadian or US guidelines.

  13. Brain Hemispheric Functions and the Native American.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ross, Allen Chuck

    1982-01-01

    Uses brain research conducted by Dr. Roger Sperry to show that traditional Native Americans are more dominant in right hemisphere thinking, setting them apart from a modern left hemisphere-oriented society (especially emphasized in schools). Describes some characteristics of Native American thinking that illustrate a right hemisphere orientation…

  14. Generating Text from Functional Brain Images

    PubMed Central

    Pereira, Francisco; Detre, Greg; Botvinick, Matthew

    2011-01-01

    Recent work has shown that it is possible to take brain images acquired during viewing of a scene and reconstruct an approximation of the scene from those images. Here we show that it is also possible to generate text about the mental content reflected in brain images. We began with images collected as participants read names of concrete items (e.g., “Apartment’’) while also seeing line drawings of the item named. We built a model of the mental semantic representation of concrete concepts from text data and learned to map aspects of such representation to patterns of activation in the corresponding brain image. In order to validate this mapping, without accessing information about the items viewed for left-out individual brain images, we were able to generate from each one a collection of semantically pertinent words (e.g., “door,” “window” for “Apartment’’). Furthermore, we show that the ability to generate such words allows us to perform a classification task and thus validate our method quantitatively. PMID:21927602

  15. Brain Hemispheric Functions and the Native American.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ross, Allen Chuck

    1982-01-01

    Uses brain research conducted by Dr. Roger Sperry to show that traditional Native Americans are more dominant in right hemisphere thinking, setting them apart from a modern left hemisphere-oriented society (especially emphasized in schools). Describes some characteristics of Native American thinking that illustrate a right hemisphere orientation…

  16. Hyper-connectivity of functional networks for brain disease diagnosis

    PubMed Central

    Jie, Biao; Wee, Chong-Yaw

    2017-01-01

    Exploring structural and functional interactions among various brain regions enables better understanding of pathological underpinnings of neurological disorders. Brain connectivity network, as a simplified representation of those structural and functional interactions, has been widely used for diagnosis and classification of neurodegenerative diseases, especially for Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and its early stage - mild cognitive impairment (MCI). However, the conventional functional connectivity network is usually constructed based on the pairwise correlation among different brain regions and thus ignores their higher-order relationships. Such loss of high-order information could be important for disease diagnosis, since neurologically a brain region predominantly interacts with more than one other brain regions. Accordingly, in this paper, we propose a novel framework for estimating the hyper-connectivity network of brain functions and then use this hyper-network for brain disease diagnosis. Here, the functional connectivity hyper-network denotes a network where each of its edges representing the interactions among multiple brain regions (i.e., an edge can connect with more than two brain regions), which can be naturally represented by a hyper-graph. Specifically, we first construct connectivity hyper-networks from the resting-state fMRI (R-fMRI) time series by using sparse representation. Then, we extract three sets of brain-region specific features from the connectivity hyper-networks, and further exploit a manifold regularized multi-task feature selection method to jointly select the most discriminative features. Finally, we use multi-kernel support vector machine (SVM) for classification. The experimental results on both MCI dataset and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) dataset demonstrate that, compared with the conventional connectivity network-based methods, the proposed method can not only improve the classification performance, but also

  17. Neural Substrate Expansion for the Restoration of Brain Function

    PubMed Central

    Chen, H. Isaac; Jgamadze, Dennis; Serruya, Mijail D.; Cullen, D. Kacy; Wolf, John A.; Smith, Douglas H.

    2016-01-01

    Restoring neurological and cognitive function in individuals who have suffered brain damage is one of the principal objectives of modern translational neuroscience. Electrical stimulation approaches, such as deep-brain stimulation, have achieved the most clinical success, but they ultimately may be limited by the computational capacity of the residual cerebral circuitry. An alternative strategy is brain substrate expansion, in which the computational capacity of the brain is augmented through the addition of new processing units and the reconstitution of network connectivity. This latter approach has been explored to some degree using both biological and electronic means but thus far has not demonstrated the ability to reestablish the function of large-scale neuronal networks. In this review, we contend that fulfilling the potential of brain substrate expansion will require a significant shift from current methods that emphasize direct manipulations of the brain (e.g., injections of cellular suspensions and the implantation of multi-electrode arrays) to the generation of more sophisticated neural tissues and neural-electric hybrids in vitro that are subsequently transplanted into the brain. Drawing from neural tissue engineering, stem cell biology, and neural interface technologies, this strategy makes greater use of the manifold techniques available in the laboratory to create biocompatible constructs that recapitulate brain architecture and thus are more easily recognized and utilized by brain networks. PMID:26834579

  18. Correspondence of the brain's functional architecture during activation and rest

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Stephen M.; Fox, Peter T.; Miller, Karla L.; Glahn, David C.; Fox, P. Mickle; Mackay, Clare E.; Filippini, Nicola; Watkins, Kate E.; Toro, Roberto; Laird, Angela R.; Beckmann, Christian F.

    2009-01-01

    Neural connections, providing the substrate for functional networks, exist whether or not they are functionally active at any given moment. However, it is not known to what extent brain regions are continuously interacting when the brain is “at rest.” In this work, we identify the major explicit activation networks by carrying out an image-based activation network analysis of thousands of separate activation maps derived from the BrainMap database of functional imaging studies, involving nearly 30,000 human subjects. Independently, we extract the major covarying networks in the resting brain, as imaged with functional magnetic resonance imaging in 36 subjects at rest. The sets of major brain networks, and their decompositions into subnetworks, show close correspondence between the independent analyses of resting and activation brain dynamics. We conclude that the full repertoire of functional networks utilized by the brain in action is continuously and dynamically “active” even when at “rest.” PMID:19620724

  19. Functional Neuroimaging in Traumatic Brain Injury: From Nodes to Networks.

    PubMed

    Medaglia, John D

    2017-01-01

    Since the invention of functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), thousands of studies in healthy and clinical samples have enlightened our understanding of the organization of cognition in the human brain and neuroplastic changes following brain disease and injury. Increasingly, studies involve analyses rooted in complex systems theory and analysis applied to clinical samples. Given the complexity in available approaches, concise descriptions of the theoretical motivation of network techniques and their relationship to traditional approaches and theory are necessary. To this end, this review concerns the use of fMRI to understand basic cognitive function and dysfunction in the human brain scaling from emphasis on basic units (or "nodes") in the brain to interactions within and between brain networks. First, major themes and theoretical issues in the scientific study of the injured brain are introduced to contextualize these analyses, particularly concerning functional "brain reorganization." Then, analytic approaches ranging from the voxel level to the systems level using graph theory and related approaches are reviewed as complementary approaches to examine neurocognitive processes following TBI. Next, some major findings relevant to functional reorganization hypotheses are discussed. Finally, major open issues in functional network analyses in neurotrauma are discussed in theoretical, analytic, and translational terms.

  20. Network Analysis of Intrinsic Functional Brain Connectivity in Alzheimer's Disease

    PubMed Central

    Supekar, Kaustubh; Menon, Vinod; Rubin, Daniel; Musen, Mark; Greicius, Michael D.

    2008-01-01

    Functional brain networks detected in task-free (“resting-state”) functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) have a small-world architecture that reflects a robust functional organization of the brain. Here, we examined whether this functional organization is disrupted in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Task-free fMRI data from 21 AD subjects and 18 age-matched controls were obtained. Wavelet analysis was applied to the fMRI data to compute frequency-dependent correlation matrices. Correlation matrices were thresholded to create 90-node undirected-graphs of functional brain networks. Small-world metrics (characteristic path length and clustering coefficient) were computed using graph analytical methods. In the low frequency interval 0.01 to 0.05 Hz, functional brain networks in controls showed small-world organization of brain activity, characterized by a high clustering coefficient and a low characteristic path length. In contrast, functional brain networks in AD showed loss of small-world properties, characterized by a significantly lower clustering coefficient (p<0.01), indicative of disrupted local connectivity. Clustering coefficients for the left and right hippocampus were significantly lower (p<0.01) in the AD group compared to the control group. Furthermore, the clustering coefficient distinguished AD participants from the controls with a sensitivity of 72% and specificity of 78%. Our study provides new evidence that there is disrupted organization of functional brain networks in AD. Small-world metrics can characterize the functional organization of the brain in AD, and our findings further suggest that these network measures may be useful as an imaging-based biomarker to distinguish AD from healthy aging. PMID:18584043

  1. Transcriptomic analysis of instinctive and learned reward-related behaviors in honey bees.

    PubMed

    Naeger, Nicholas L; Robinson, Gene E

    2016-11-15

    We used transcriptomics to compare instinctive and learned, reward-based honey bee behaviors with similar spatio-temporal components: mating flights by males (drones) and time-trained foraging flights by females (workers), respectively. Genome-wide gene expression profiling via RNA sequencing was performed on the mushroom bodies, a region of the brain known for multi-modal sensory integration and responsive to various types of reward. Differentially expressed genes (DEGs) associated with the onset of mating (623 genes) were enriched for the gene ontology (GO) categories of Transcription, Unfolded Protein Binding, Post-embryonic Development, and Neuron Differentiation. DEGs associated with the onset of foraging (473) were enriched for Lipid Transport, Regulation of Programmed Cell Death, and Actin Cytoskeleton Organization. These results demonstrate that there are fundamental molecular differences between similar instinctive and learned behaviors. In addition, there were 166 genes with strong similarities in expression across the two behaviors - a statistically significant overlap in gene expression, also seen in Weighted Gene Co-Expression Network Analysis. This finding indicates that similar instinctive and learned behaviors also share common molecular architecture. This common set of DEGs was enriched for Regulation of RNA Metabolic Process, Transcription Factor Activity, and Response to Ecdysone. These findings provide a starting point for better understanding the relationship between instincts and learned behaviors. In addition, because bees collect food for their colony rather than for themselves, these results also support the idea that altruistic behavior relies, in part, on elements of brain reward systems associated with selfish behavior.

  2. [The advantages and limitations of brain function analyses by PET].

    PubMed

    Kato, M; Taniwaki, T; Kuwabara, Y

    2000-12-01

    PET has been proved to be a powerful tool for exploring the brain function. We discussed the advantages and limitations of PET for analyzing the brain function on the basis of our clinical and experimental experiences of functional imaging. A multimodality PET study measuring cerebral energy metabolism (CMRO2 and CMRglc), cerebral blood flow (CBF), oxygen extraction fraction (OEF) and neurotransmitter function (presynaptic and postsynaptic) opens up a closer insight into a precise pathophysiology of the brain dysfunction: In cerebral infarction, it reveals a state of "misery perfusion" in the acute stage, "luxury perfusion" in the intermediate stage, and proportionately decreased CBF and CMRO2 in the chronic stage. Neurotransmitter function may identify specifically a neuronal subgroup of dysfunction. Owing to the low temporal resolution of PET, a neuronal activity may propagate transsynaptically to remote areas during the period of scanning, resulting in an obscured primary site of the neuronal activity. Uncoupling between neuronal activities and cerebral energy metabolism/CBF may occur under a certain state of brain pathology, particularly after an acute destructive lesion, according to our experimental studies. Neurotransmitter function may reveal the effect of drugs on the brain function, and may be useful for developing a new method of drug therapy for brain diseases in the future.

  3. Breakdown of the brain's functional network modularity with awareness.

    PubMed

    Godwin, Douglass; Barry, Robert L; Marois, René

    2015-03-24

    Neurobiological theories of awareness propose divergent accounts of the spatial extent of brain changes that support conscious perception. Whereas focal theories posit mostly local regional changes, global theories propose that awareness emerges from the propagation of neural signals across a broad extent of sensory and association cortex. Here we tested the scalar extent of brain changes associated with awareness using graph theoretical analysis applied to functional connectivity data acquired at ultra-high field while subjects performed a simple masked target detection task. We found that awareness of a visual target is associated with a degradation of the modularity of the brain's functional networks brought about by an increase in intermodular functional connectivity. These results provide compelling evidence that awareness is associated with truly global changes in the brain's functional connectivity.

  4. Functional brain imaging in schizophrenia: selected results and methods.

    PubMed

    Brown, Gregory G; Thompson, Wesley K

    2010-01-01

    Functional brain imaging studies of patients with schizophrenia may be grouped into those that assume that the signs and symptoms of schizophrenia are due to disordered circuitry within a critical brain region and studies that assume that the signs and symptoms are due to disordered connections among brain regions. Studies have investigated the disordered functional brain anatomy of both the positive and negative symptoms of schizophrenia. Studies of spontaneous hallucinations find that although hallucinations are associated with abnormal brain activity in primary and secondary sensory areas, disordered brain activation associated with hallucinations is not limited to sensory systems. Disordered activation in non-sensory regions appear to contribute to the emotional strength and valence of hallucinations, to be a factor underlying an inability to distinguish ongoing mental processing from memories, and to reflect the brain's attempt to modulate the intensity of hallucinations and resolve conflicts with other processing demands. Brain activation studies support the view that auditory/verbal hallucinations are associated with an impaired ability of internal speech plans to modulate neural activation in sensory language areas. In early studies, negative symptoms of schizophrenia were hypothesized to be associated with impaired function in frontal brain areas. In support of this hypothesis meta-analytical studies have found that resting blood flow or metabolism in frontal cortex is reduced in schizophrenia, though the magnitude of the effect is only small to moderate. Brain activation studies of working memory (WM) functioning are typically associated with large effect sizes in the frontal cortex, whereas studies of functions other than WM generally reveal smaller effects. Findings from some functional connectivity studies have supported the hypothesis that schizophrenia patients experience impaired functional connections between frontal and temporal cortex, although

  5. Functional brain network modularity predicts response to cognitive training after brain injury

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Anthony J.-W.; Novakovic-Agopian, Tatjana; Gratton, Caterina; Nomura, Emi M.; D'Esposito, Mark

    2015-01-01

    Objective: We tested the value of measuring modularity, a graph theory metric indexing the relative extent of integration and segregation of distributed functional brain networks, for predicting individual differences in response to cognitive training in patients with brain injury. Methods: Patients with acquired brain injury (n = 11) participated in 5 weeks of cognitive training and a comparison condition (brief education) in a crossover intervention study design. We quantified the measure of functional brain network organization, modularity, from functional connectivity networks during a state of tonic attention regulation measured during fMRI scanning before the intervention conditions. We examined the relationship of baseline modularity with pre- to posttraining changes in neuropsychological measures of attention and executive control. Results: The modularity of brain network organization at baseline predicted improvement in attention and executive function after cognitive training, but not after the comparison intervention. Individuals with higher baseline modularity exhibited greater improvements with cognitive training, suggesting that a more modular baseline network state may contribute to greater adaptation in response to cognitive training. Conclusions: Brain network properties such as modularity provide valuable information for understanding mechanisms that influence rehabilitation of cognitive function after brain injury, and may contribute to the discovery of clinically relevant biomarkers that could guide rehabilitation efforts. PMID:25788557

  6. Telemedicine for evaluation of brain function by a metacomputer.

    PubMed

    Mizuno-Matsumoto, Y; Date, S; Tabuchi, Y; Tamura, S; Sato, Y; Zoroofi, R A; Shimojo, S; Kadobayashi, Y; Tatsumi, H; Nogawa, H; Shinosaki, K; Takeda, M; Inouye, T; Miyahara, H

    2000-06-01

    A method of evaluating brain function using the metacomputer concept of the Globus system combined with a message-passing interface is described. The proposed method has the ability to exploit various geographically distributed resources and parallel computing linked to a high-technology medical instrumentation system, magnetoencephalography, to analyze the functional state of the brain. It is envisaged that the method will lead to the realization of an efficient telemedicine system for health care.

  7. [Functions of microglia in the healthy brain: focus on neuroplasticity].

    PubMed

    Tishkina, A O; Stepanichev, M Iu; Aniol, V A; Guliaeva, N V

    2014-01-01

    Microglia is in the center of modern research because it is involved in neuroinflammation processes, which is considered as an important part of pathogenesis of many brain pathologies. On the contrary, normal physiological functions of microglia are less studied. Here we review modern data on functioning of microglia in the healthy brain. We consider involvement of microglia in angiogenesis, neurogenesis, synaptogenesis, long-term potentiation, and the mechanisms of microglia-neuron interaction. We further consider modern concept on active interaction of microglia with neurons in developing and healthy mature brain and the essential role of microglia in neuroplasticity mechanisms at various levels.

  8. Maintaining older brain functionality: A targeted review.

    PubMed

    Ballesteros, Soledad; Kraft, Eduard; Santana, Silvina; Tziraki, Chariklia

    2015-08-01

    The unprecedented growth in the number of older adults in our society is accompanied by the exponential increase in the number of elderly people who will suffer cognitive decline and dementia in the next decades. This will create an enormous cost for governments, families and individuals. Brain plasticity and its role in brain adaptation to the process of aging is influenced by other changes as a result of co-morbidities, environmental factors, personality traits (psychosocial variables) and genetic and epigenetic factors. This review summarizes recent findings obtained mostly from interventional studies that aim to prevent and/or delay age-related cognitive decline in healthy adults. There are a multitude of such studies. In this paper, we focused our review on physical activity, computerized cognitive training and social enhancement interventions on improving cognition, physical health, independent living and wellbeing of older adults. The methodological limitations of some of these studies, and the need for new multi-domain synergistic interventions, based on current advances in neuroscience and social-brain theories, are discussed. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Brain Connectivity and Functional Recovery in Patients With Ischemic Stroke.

    PubMed

    Almeida, Sara Regina Meira; Vicentini, Jessica; Bonilha, Leonardo; De Campos, Brunno M; Casseb, Raphael F; Min, Li Li

    2017-01-01

    Brain mapping studies have demonstrated that functional poststroke brain reorganization is associated with recovery of motor function. Nonetheless, the specific mechanisms associated with functional reorganization leading to motor recovery are still partly unknown. In this study, we performed a cross-sectional evaluation of poststroke subjects with the following goals: (1) To assess intra- and interhemispheric functional brain activation patterns associated with motor function in poststroke patients with variable degrees of recovery; (2) to investigate the involvement of other nonmotor functional networks in relationship with recovery. We studied 59 individuals: 13 patients with function Rankin > 1 and Barthel < 100; 19 patients with preserved function with Rankin 0-1 and Barthel = 100; and 27 healthy controls. All subjects underwent structural and functional magnetic resonance imaging (3T Philips Achieva, Holland) using the same protocol (TR = 2 seconds, TE = 30 ms, FOV = 240 × 240 × 117, slice = 39). Resting state functional connectivity was used by in-house software, based on SPM12. Among patients with and without preserved function, the functional connectivity between the primary motor region (M1) and the contralateral hemisphere was increased compared with controls. Nonetheless, only patients with decreased function exhibited decreased functional connectivity between executive control, sensorimotor and visuospatial networks. Functional recovery after stroke is associated with preserved functional connectivity of motor to nonmotor networks. Copyright © 2016 by the American Society of Neuroimaging.

  10. Human brain activity with functional NIR optical imager

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luo, Qingming

    2001-08-01

    In this paper we reviewed the applications of functional near infrared optical imager in human brain activity. Optical imaging results of brain activity, including memory for new association, emotional thinking, mental arithmetic, pattern recognition ' where's Waldo?, occipital cortex in visual stimulation, and motor cortex in finger tapping, are demonstrated. It is shown that the NIR optical method opens up new fields of study of the human population, in adults under conditions of simulated or real stress that may have important effects upon functional performance. It makes practical and affordable for large populations the complex technology of measuring brain function. It is portable and low cost. In cognitive tasks subjects could report orally. The temporal resolution could be millisecond or less in theory. NIR method will have good prospects in exploring human brain secret.

  11. Degree of musical expertise modulates higher order brain functioning.

    PubMed

    Oechslin, Mathias S; Van De Ville, Dimitri; Lazeyras, François; Hauert, Claude-Alain; James, Clara E

    2013-09-01

    Using functional magnetic resonance imaging, we show for the first time that levels of musical expertise stepwise modulate higher order brain functioning. This suggests that degree of training intensity drives such cerebral plasticity. Participants (non-musicians, amateurs, and expert musicians) listened to a comprehensive set of specifically composed string quartets with hierarchically manipulated endings. In particular, we implemented 2 irregularities at musical closure that differed in salience but were both within the tonality of the piece (in-key). Behavioral sensitivity scores (d') of both transgressions perfectly separated participants according to their level of musical expertise. By contrasting brain responses to harmonic transgressions against regular endings, functional brain imaging data showed compelling evidence for stepwise modulation of brain responses by both violation strength and expertise level in a fronto-temporal network hosting universal functions of working memory and attention. Additional independent testing evidenced an advantage in visual working memory for the professionals, which could be predicted by musical training intensity. The here introduced findings of brain plasticity demonstrate the progressive impact of musical training on cognitive brain functions that may manifest well beyond the field of music processing.

  12. Special surgical considerations for functional brain mapping.

    PubMed

    Kekhia, Hussein; Rigolo, Laura; Norton, Isaiah; Golby, Alexandra J

    2011-04-01

    The development of functional mapping techniques gives neurosurgeons many options for preoperative planning. Integrating functional and anatomic data can inform patient selection and surgical planning and makes functional mapping more accessible than when only invasive studies were available. However, the applications of functional mapping to neurosurgical patients are still evolving. Functional imaging remains complex and requires an understanding of the underlying physiologic and imaging characteristics. Neurosurgeons must be accustomed to interpreting highly processed data. Successful implementation of functional image-guided procedures requires efficient interactions between neurosurgeon, neurologist, radiologist, neuropsychologist, and others, but promises to enhance the care of patients.

  13. EEG-based research on brain functional networks in cognition.

    PubMed

    Wang, Niannian; Zhang, Li; Liu, Guozhong

    2015-01-01

    Recently, exploring the cognitive functions of the brain by establishing a network model to understand the working mechanism of the brain has become a popular research topic in the field of neuroscience. In this study, electroencephalography (EEG) was used to collect data from subjects given four different mathematical cognitive tasks: recite numbers clockwise and counter-clockwise, and letters clockwise and counter-clockwise to build a complex brain function network (BFN). By studying the connectivity features and parameters of those brain functional networks, it was found that the average clustering coefficient is much larger than its corresponding random network and the average shortest path length is similar to the corresponding random networks, which clearly shows the characteristics of the small-world network. The brain regions stimulated during the experiment are consistent with traditional cognitive science regarding learning, memory, comprehension, and other rational judgment results. The new method of complex networking involves studying the mathematical cognitive process of reciting, providing an effective research foundation for exploring the relationship between brain cognition and human learning skills and memory. This could help detect memory deficits early in young and mentally handicapped children, and help scientists understand the causes of cognitive brain disorders.

  14. [Determinism and Freedom of Choice in the Brain Functioning].

    PubMed

    Ivanitsky, A M

    2015-01-01

    The problem is considered whether the brain response is completely determined by the stimulus and the personal experience or in some cases the brain is free to choose its behavioral response to achieve the desired goal. The attempt is made to approach to this important philosophical problem basing on modern knowledge about the brain. The paper consists of four parts. In the first part the theoretical views about the free choice problem solving are considered, including views about the freedom of choice as a useful illusion, the hypothesis on appliance of quantum mechanics laws to the brain functioning and the theory of mentalism. In other tree parts consequently the more complicated brain functions such as choice reaction, thinking and creation are analyzed. The general conclusion is that the possibility of quite unpredictable, but sometimes very effective decisions increases when the brain functions are more and more complicated. This fact can be explained with two factors: increasing stochasticity of the brain processes and the role of top-down determinations from mental to neural levels, according to the theory of mentalism.

  15. Pericytes control key neurovascular functions and neuronal phenotype in the adult brain and during brain aging

    PubMed Central

    Bell, Robert D.; Winkler, Ethan A.; Sagare, Abhay P.; Singh, Itender; LaRue, Barb; Deane, Rashid; Zlokovic, Berislav V.

    2010-01-01

    SUMMARY Pericytes play a key role in the development of cerebral microcirculation. The exact role of pericytes in the neurovascular unit in the adult brain and during brain aging remains, however, elusive. Using adult viable pericyte-deficient mice, we show that pericyte loss leads to brain vascular damage by two parallel pathways: (1) reduction in brain microcirculation causing diminished brain capillary perfusion, cerebral blood flow and cerebral blood flow responses to brain activation which ultimately mediates chronic perfusion stress and hypoxia, and (2) blood-brain barrier breakdown associated with brain accumulation of serum proteins and several vasculotoxic and/or neurotoxic macromolecules ultimately leading to secondary neuronal degenerative changes. We show that age-dependent vascular damage in pericyte-deficient mice precedes neuronal degenerative changes, learning and memory impairment and the neuroinflammatory response. Thus, pericytes control key neurovascular functions that are necessary for proper neuronal structure and function, and pericytes loss results in a progressive age-dependent vascular-mediated neurodegeneration. PMID:21040844

  16. Striatal Activity and Reward Relativity: Neural Signals Encoding Dynamic Outcome Valuation

    PubMed Central

    Webber, Emily S.; Mankin, David E.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract The striatum is a key brain region involved in reward processing. Striatal activity has been linked to encoding reward magnitude and integrating diverse reward outcome information. Recent work has supported the involvement of striatum in the valuation of outcomes. The present work extends this idea by examining striatal activity during dynamic shifts in value that include different levels and directions of magnitude disparity. A novel task was used to produce diverse relative reward effects on a chain of instrumental action. Rats (Rattus norvegicus) were trained to respond to cues associated with specific outcomes varying by food pellet magnitude. Animals were exposed to single-outcome sessions followed by mixed-outcome sessions, and neural activity was compared among identical outcome trials from the different behavioral contexts. Results recording striatal activity show that neural responses to different task elements reflect incentive contrast as well as other relative effects that involve generalization between outcomes or possible influences of outcome variety. The activity that was most prevalent was linked to food consumption and post-food consumption periods. Relative encoding was sensitive to magnitude disparity. A within-session analysis showed strong contrast effects that were dependent upon the outcome received in the immediately preceding trial. Significantly higher numbers of responses were found in ventral striatum linked to relative outcome effects. Our results support the idea that relative value can incorporate diverse relationships, including comparisons from specific individual outcomes to general behavioral contexts. The striatum contains these diverse relative processes, possibly enabling both a higher information yield concerning value shifts and a greater behavioral flexibility. PMID:27822506

  17. Striatal Activity and Reward Relativity: Neural Signals Encoding Dynamic Outcome Valuation.

    PubMed

    Webber, Emily S; Mankin, David E; Cromwell, Howard C

    2016-01-01

    The striatum is a key brain region involved in reward processing. Striatal activity has been linked to encoding reward magnitude and integrating diverse reward outcome information. Recent work has supported the involvement of striatum in the valuation of outcomes. The present work extends this idea by examining striatal activity during dynamic shifts in value that include different levels and directions of magnitude disparity. A novel task was used to produce diverse relative reward effects on a chain of instrumental action. Rats (Rattus norvegicus) were trained to respond to cues associated with specific outcomes varying by food pellet magnitude. Animals were exposed to single-outcome sessions followed by mixed-outcome sessions, and neural activity was compared among identical outcome trials from the different behavioral contexts. Results recording striatal activity show that neural responses to different task elements reflect incentive contrast as well as other relative effects that involve generalization between outcomes or possible influences of outcome variety. The activity that was most prevalent was linked to food consumption and post-food consumption periods. Relative encoding was sensitive to magnitude disparity. A within-session analysis showed strong contrast effects that were dependent upon the outcome received in the immediately preceding trial. Significantly higher numbers of responses were found in ventral striatum linked to relative outcome effects. Our results support the idea that relative value can incorporate diverse relationships, including comparisons from specific individual outcomes to general behavioral contexts. The striatum contains these diverse relative processes, possibly enabling both a higher information yield concerning value shifts and a greater behavioral flexibility.

  18. Branched-chain amino acids and brain function.

    PubMed

    Fernstrom, John D

    2005-06-01

    Branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) influence brain function by modifying large, neutral amino acid (LNAA) transport at the blood-brain barrier. Transport is shared by several LNAAs, notably the BCAAs and the aromatic amino acids (ArAAs), and is competitive. Consequently, when plasma BCAA concentrations rise, which can occur in response to food ingestion or BCAA administration, or with the onset of certain metabolic diseases (e.g., uncontrolled diabetes), brain BCAA concentrations rise, and ArAA concentrations decline. Such effects occur acutely and chronically. Such reductions in brain ArAA concentrations have functional consequences: biochemically, they reduce the synthesis and the release of neurotransmitters derived from ArAAs, notably serotonin (from tryptophan) and catecholamines (from tyrosine and phenylalanine). The functional effects of such neurochemical changes include altered hormonal function, blood pressure, and affective state. Although the BCAAs thus have biochemical and functional effects in the brain, few attempts have been made to characterize time-course or dose-response relations for such effects. And, no studies have attempted to identify levels of BCAA intake that might produce adverse effects on the brain. The only "model" of very high BCAA exposure is a very rare genetic disorder, maple syrup urine disease, a feature of which is substantial brain dysfunction but that probably cannot serve as a useful model for excessive BCAA intake by normal individuals. Given the known biochemical and functional effects of the BCAAs, it should be a straightforward exercise to design studies to assess dose-response relations for biochemical and functional effects and, in this context, to explore for adverse effect thresholds.

  19. Dynamic reconfiguration of cortical functional connectivity across brain states.

    PubMed

    Stitt, Iain; Hollensteiner, Karl J; Galindo-Leon, Edgar; Pieper, Florian; Fiedler, Eva; Stieglitz, Thomas; Engler, Gerhard; Nolte, Guido; Engel, Andreas K

    2017-08-18

    Throughout each day, the brain displays transient changes in state, as evidenced by shifts in behavior and vigilance. While the electrophysiological correlates of brain states have been studied for some time, it remains unclear how large-scale cortico-cortical functional connectivity systematically reconfigures across states. Here, we investigate state-dependent shifts in cortical functional connectivity by recording local field potentials (LFPs) during spontaneous behavioral transitions in the ferret using chronically implanted micro-electrocorticographic (µECoG) arrays positioned over occipital, parietal, and temporal cortical regions. To objectively classify brain state, we describe a data-driven approach that projects time-varying LFP spectral properties into brain state space. Distinct brain states displayed markedly different patterns of cross-frequency phase-amplitude coupling and inter-electrode phase synchronization across several LFP frequency bands. The largest across-state differences in functional connectivity were observed between periods of presumed slow-wave and rapid-eye-movement-sleep/active-state, which were characterized by the contrasting phenomena of cortical network fragmentation and global synchronization, respectively. Collectively, our data provide strong evidence that large-scale functional interactions in the brain dynamically reconfigure across behavioral states.

  20. Deconstructing multivariate decoding for the study of brain function.

    PubMed

    Hebart, Martin N; Baker, Chris I

    2017-08-04

    Multivariate decoding methods were developed originally as tools to enable accurate predictions in real-world applications. The realization that these methods can also be employed to study brain function has led to their widespread adoption in the neurosciences. However, prior to the rise of multivariate decoding, the study of brain function was firmly embedded in a statistical philosophy grounded on univariate methods of data analysis. In this way, multivariate decoding for brain interpretation grew out of two established frameworks: multivariate decoding for predictions in real-world applications, and classical univariate analysis based on the study and interpretation of brain activation. We argue that this led to two confusions, one reflecting a mixture of multivariate decoding for prediction or interpretation, and the other a mixture of the conceptual and statistical philosophies underlying multivariate decoding and classical univariate analysis. Here we attempt to systematically disambiguate multivariate decoding for the study of brain function from the frameworks it grew out of. After elaborating these confusions and their consequences, we describe six, often unappreciated, differences between classical univariate analysis and multivariate decoding. We then focus on how the common interpretation of what is signal and noise changes in multivariate decoding. Finally, we use four examples to illustrate where these confusions may impact the interpretation of neuroimaging data. We conclude with a discussion of potential strategies to help resolve these confusions in interpreting multivariate decoding results, including the potential departure from multivariate decoding methods for the study of brain function. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  1. Functional neuroimaging of traumatic brain injury: advances and clinical utility

    PubMed Central

    Irimia, Andrei; Van Horn, John Darrell

    2015-01-01

    Functional deficits due to traumatic brain injury (TBI) can have significant and enduring consequences upon patients’ life quality and expectancy. Although functional neuroimaging is essential for understanding TBI pathophysiology, an insufficient amount of effort has been dedicated to the task of translating functional neuroimaging findings into information with clinical utility. The purpose of this review is to summarize the use of functional neuroimaging techniques – especially functional magnetic resonance imaging, diffusion tensor imaging, positron emission tomography, magnetic resonance spectroscopy, and electroencephalography – for advancing current knowledge of TBI-related brain dysfunction and for improving the rehabilitation of TBI patients. We focus on seven core areas of functional deficits, namely consciousness, motor function, attention, memory, higher cognition, personality, and affect, and, for each of these, we summarize recent findings from neuroimaging studies which have provided substantial insight into brain function changes due to TBI. Recommendations are also provided to aid in setting the direction of future neuroimaging research and for understanding brain function changes after TBI. PMID:26396520

  2. Characterizing dynamic local functional connectivity in the human brain

    PubMed Central

    Deng, Lifu; Sun, Junfeng; Cheng, Lin; Tong, Shanbao

    2016-01-01

    Functional connectivity (FC), obtained from functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), brings insights into the functional organization of the brain. Recently, rich and complex behaviour of brain has been revealed by the dynamic fluctuation of FC, which had previously been regarded as confounding ‘noise’. While the dynamics of long-distance, inter-regional FC has been extensively studied, the dynamics of local FC within a few millimetres in space remains largely unexplored. In this study, the local FC was depicted by regional homogeneity (ReHo), and the dynamics of local FC was obtained using sliding windows method. We observed a robust positive correlation between ReHo and its temporal variability, which was shown to be an intrinsic feature of the brain rather than a pure stochastic effect. Furthermore, fluctuation of ReHo was associated with global functional organization: (i) brain regions with higher centrality of inter-regional FC tended to possess higher ReHo variability; (ii) coherence of ReHo fluctuation was higher within brain’s functional modules. Finally, we observed alteration of ReHo variability during a motor task compared with resting-state. Our findings associated the temporal fluctuation of ReHo with brain function, opening up the possibility of dynamic local FC study in the future. PMID:27231194

  3. Brain-Computer Interface Controlled Cyborg: Establishing a Functional Information Transfer Pathway from Human Brain to Cockroach Brain.

    PubMed

    Li, Guangye; Zhang, Dingguo

    2016-01-01

    An all-chain-wireless brain-to-brain system (BTBS), which enabled motion control of a cyborg cockroach via human brain, was developed in this work. Steady-state visual evoked potential (SSVEP) based brain-computer interface (BCI) was used in this system for recognizing human motion intention and an optimization algorithm was proposed in SSVEP to improve online performance of the BCI. The cyborg cockroach was developed by surgically integrating a portable microstimulator that could generate invasive electrical nerve stimulation. Through Bluetooth communication, specific electrical pulse trains could be triggered from the microstimulator by BCI commands and were sent through the antenna nerve to stimulate the brain of cockroach. Serial experiments were designed and conducted to test overall performance of the BTBS with six human subjects and three cockroaches. The experimental results showed that the online classification accuracy of three-mode BCI increased from 72.86% to 78.56% by 5.70% using the optimization algorithm and the mean response accuracy of the cyborgs using this system reached 89.5%. Moreover, the results also showed that the cyborg could be navigated by the human brain to complete walking along an S-shape track with the success rate of about 20%, suggesting the proposed BTBS established a feasible functional information transfer pathway from the human brain to the cockroach brain.

  4. Brain-Computer Interface Controlled Cyborg: Establishing a Functional Information Transfer Pathway from Human Brain to Cockroach Brain

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    An all-chain-wireless brain-to-brain system (BTBS), which enabled motion control of a cyborg cockroach via human brain, was developed in this work. Steady-state visual evoked potential (SSVEP) based brain-computer interface (BCI) was used in this system for recognizing human motion intention and an optimization algorithm was proposed in SSVEP to improve online performance of the BCI. The cyborg cockroach was developed by surgically integrating a portable microstimulator that could generate invasive electrical nerve stimulation. Through Bluetooth communication, specific electrical pulse trains could be triggered from the microstimulator by BCI commands and were sent through the antenna nerve to stimulate the brain of cockroach. Serial experiments were designed and conducted to test overall performance of the BTBS with six human subjects and three cockroaches. The experimental results showed that the online classification accuracy of three-mode BCI increased from 72.86% to 78.56% by 5.70% using the optimization algorithm and the mean response accuracy of the cyborgs using this system reached 89.5%. Moreover, the results also showed that the cyborg could be navigated by the human brain to complete walking along an S-shape track with the success rate of about 20%, suggesting the proposed BTBS established a feasible functional information transfer pathway from the human brain to the cockroach brain. PMID:26982717

  5. Prefrontal cortical regulation of brainwide circuit dynamics and reward-related behavior

    PubMed Central

    Grosenick, Logan; Warden, Melissa R.; Amatya, Debha; Katovich, Kiefer; Mehta, Hershel; Patenaude, Brian; Ramakrishnan, Charu; Kalanithi, Paul; Etkin, Amit; Knutson, Brian; Glover, Gary H.; Deisseroth, Karl

    2016-01-01

    Motivation for reward drives adaptive behaviors, whereas impairment of reward perception and experience (anhedonia) can contribute to psychiatric diseases, including depression and schizophrenia. We sought to test the hypothesis that the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) controls interactions among specific subcortical regions that govern hedonic responses. By using optogenetic functional magnetic resonance imaging to locally manipulate but globally visualize neural activity in rats, we found that dopamine neuron stimulation drives striatal activity, whereas locally increased mPFC excitability reduces this striatal response and inhibits the behavioral drive for dopaminergic stimulation. This chronic mPFC overactivity also stably suppresses natural reward-motivated behaviors and induces specific new brainwide functional interactions, which predict the degree of anhedonia in individuals. These findings describe a mechanism by which mPFC modulates expression of reward-seeking behavior, by regulating the dynamical interactions between specific distant subcortical regions. PMID:26722001

  6. Self-portraits of the brain: cognitive science, data visualization, and communicating brain structure and function.

    PubMed

    Goldstone, Robert L; Pestilli, Franco; Börner, Katy

    2015-08-01

    With several large-scale human brain projects currently underway and a range of neuroimaging techniques growing in availability to researchers, the amount and diversity of data relevant for understanding the human brain is increasing rapidly. A complete understanding of the brain must incorporate information about 3D neural location, activity, timing, and task. Data mining, high-performance computing, and visualization can serve as tools that augment human intellect; however, the resulting visualizations must take into account human abilities and limitations to be effective tools for exploration and communication. In this feature review, we discuss key challenges and opportunities that arise when leveraging the sophisticated perceptual and conceptual processing of the human brain to help researchers understand brain structure, function, and behavior. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. [Functional imaging of deep brain stimulation in idiopathic Parkinson's disease].

    PubMed

    Hilker, R

    2010-10-01

    Functional brain imaging allows the effects of deep brain stimulation (DBS) on the living human brain to be investigated. In patients with advanced Parkinson's disease (PD), positron emission tomography (PET) studies were undertaken at rest as well as under motor, cognitive or behavioral activation. DBS leads to a reduction of abnormal PD-related network activity in the motor system, which partly correlates with the improvement of motor symptoms. The local increase of energy consumption within the direct target area suggests a predominant excitatory influence of the stimulation current on neuronal tissue. Remote effects of DBS of the subthalamic nucleus (STN) on frontal association cortices indicate an interference of stimulation energy with associative and limbic basal ganglia loops. Taken together, functional brain imaging provides very valuable data for advancement of the DBS technique in PD therapy.

  8. Effect of glycolysis inhibition on mitochondrial function in rat brain.

    PubMed

    Cano-Ramírez, D; Torres-Vargas, C E; Guerrero-Castillo, S; Uribe-Carvajal, S; Hernández-Pando, R; Pedraza-Chaverri, J; Orozco-Ibarra, M

    2012-05-01

    Inhibition of the glycolytic enzyme glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase enhances the neural vulnerability to excitotoxicity both in vivo and in vitro through an unknown mechanism possibly related to mitochondrial failure. However, as the effect of glycolysis inhibition on mitochondrial function in brain has not been studied, the aim of the present work was to evaluate the effect of glycolysis inhibition induced by iodoacetate on mitochondrial function and oxidative stress in brain. Mitochondria were isolated from brain cortex, striatum and cerebellum of rats treated systemically with iodoacetate (25 mg/kg/day for 3 days). Oxygen consumption, ATP synthesis, transmembrane potential, reactive oxygen species production, lipoperoxidation, glutathione levels, and aconitase activity were assessed. Oxygen consumption and aconitase activity decreased in the brain cortex and striatum, showing that glycolysis inhibition did not trigger severe mitochondrial impairment, but a slight mitochondrial malfunction and oxidative stress were present.

  9. Enhancing brain functions in senior dogs: a new nutritional approach.

    PubMed

    Pan, Yuanlong

    2011-02-01

    Aging induces many morphological and metabolic changes in the brain, which may eventually lead to cognitive impairment and dementia called cognitive dysfunction syndrome in senior dogs. Cognitive impairment and dementia can adversely affect the quality of life in both dogs and their owners. Progress has been made over the past years to understand how aging affects brain and its functions in humans and animals including dogs. Existing data indicate that aging-induced changes in the brain are gradual and irreversible. Therefore, it is too late to effectively manage dogs with cognitive impairment and cognitive dysfunction syndrome. The best option to manage brain aging successfully is to reduce or prevent aging-induced changes in the brain by correcting early metabolic changes and eliminating risk factors associated with brain aging and dementia. This article reviews behavioral, morphological, and metabolic changes in the brain induced by aging and discusses a novel nutritional solution for the aging-induced metabolic changes in the brain. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Resiliency of EEG-Based Brain Functional Networks

    PubMed Central

    Jalili, Mahdi

    2015-01-01

    Applying tools available in network science and graph theory to study brain networks has opened a new era in understanding brain mechanisms. Brain functional networks extracted from EEG time series have been frequently studied in health and diseases. In this manuscript, we studied failure resiliency of EEG-based brain functional networks. The network structures were extracted by analysing EEG time series obtained from 30 healthy subjects in resting state eyes-closed conditions. As the network structure was extracted, we measured a number of metrics related to their resiliency. In general, the brain networks showed worse resilient behaviour as compared to corresponding random networks with the same degree sequences. Brain networks had higher vulnerability than the random ones (P < 0.05), indicating that their global efficiency (i.e., communicability between the regions) is more affected by removing the important nodes. Furthermore, the breakdown happened as a result of cascaded failures in brain networks was severer (i.e., less nodes survived) as compared to randomized versions (P < 0.05). These results suggest that real EEG-based networks have not been evolved to possess optimal resiliency against failures. PMID:26295341

  11. Resiliency of EEG-Based Brain Functional Networks.

    PubMed

    Jalili, Mahdi

    2015-01-01

    Applying tools available in network science and graph theory to study brain networks has opened a new era in understanding brain mechanisms. Brain functional networks extracted from EEG time series have been frequently studied in health and diseases. In this manuscript, we studied failure resiliency of EEG-based brain functional networks. The network structures were extracted by analysing EEG time series obtained from 30 healthy subjects in resting state eyes-closed conditions. As the network structure was extracted, we measured a number of metrics related to their resiliency. In general, the brain networks showed worse resilient behaviour as compared to corresponding random networks with the same degree sequences. Brain networks had higher vulnerability than the random ones (P < 0.05), indicating that their global efficiency (i.e., communicability between the regions) is more affected by removing the important nodes. Furthermore, the breakdown happened as a result of cascaded failures in brain networks was severer (i.e., less nodes survived) as compared to randomized versions (P < 0.05). These results suggest that real EEG-based networks have not been evolved to possess optimal resiliency against failures.

  12. Developing Brain Vital Signs: Initial Framework for Monitoring Brain Function Changes Over Time.

    PubMed

    Ghosh Hajra, Sujoy; Liu, Careesa C; Song, Xiaowei; Fickling, Shaun; Liu, Luke E; Pawlowski, Gabriela; Jorgensen, Janelle K; Smith, Aynsley M; Schnaider-Beeri, Michal; Van Den Broek, Rudi; Rizzotti, Rowena; Fisher, Kirk; D'Arcy, Ryan C N

    2016-01-01

    Clinical assessment of brain function relies heavily on indirect behavior-based tests. Unfortunately, behavior-based assessments are subjective and therefore susceptible to several confounding factors. Event-related brain potentials (ERPs), derived from electroencephalography (EEG), are often used to provide objective, physiological measures of brain function. Historically, ERPs have been characterized extensively within research settings, with limited but growing clinical applications. Over the past 20 years, we have developed clinical ERP applications for the evaluation of functional status following serious injury and/or disease. This work has identified an important gap: the need for a clinically accessible framework to evaluate ERP measures. Crucially, this enables baseline measures before brain dysfunction occurs, and might enable the routine collection of brain function metrics in the future much like blood pressure measures today. Here, we propose such a framework for extracting specific ERPs as potential "brain vital signs." This framework enabled the translation/transformation of complex ERP data into accessible metrics of brain function for wider clinical utilization. To formalize the framework, three essential ERPs were selected as initial indicators: (1) the auditory N100 (Auditory sensation); (2) the auditory oddball P300 (Basic attention); and (3) the auditory speech processing N400 (Cognitive processing). First step validation was conducted on healthy younger and older adults (age range: 22-82 years). Results confirmed specific ERPs at the individual level (86.81-98.96%), verified predictable age-related differences (P300 latency delays in older adults, p < 0.05), and demonstrated successful linear transformation into the proposed brain vital sign (BVS) framework (basic attention latency sub-component of BVS framework reflects delays in older adults, p < 0.05). The findings represent an initial critical step in developing, extracting, and

  13. Joint brain connectivity estimation from diffusion and functional MRI data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chu, Shu-Hsien; Lenglet, Christophe; Parhi, Keshab K.

    2015-03-01

    Estimating brain wiring patterns is critical to better understand the brain organization and function. Anatomical brain connectivity models axonal pathways, while the functional brain connectivity characterizes the statistical dependencies and correlation between the activities of various brain regions. The synchronization of brain activity can be inferred through the variation of blood-oxygen-level dependent (BOLD) signal from functional MRI (fMRI) and the neural connections can be estimated using tractography from diffusion MRI (dMRI). Functional connections between brain regions are supported by anatomical connections, and the synchronization of brain activities arises through sharing of information in the form of electro-chemical signals on axon pathways. Jointly modeling fMRI and dMRI data may improve the accuracy in constructing anatomical connectivity as well as functional connectivity. Such an approach may lead to novel multimodal biomarkers potentially able to better capture functional and anatomical connectivity variations. We present a novel brain network model which jointly models the dMRI and fMRI data to improve the anatomical connectivity estimation and extract the anatomical subnetworks associated with specific functional modes by constraining the anatomical connections as structural supports to the functional connections. The key idea is similar to a multi-commodity flow optimization problem that minimizes the cost or maximizes the efficiency for flow configuration and simultaneously fulfills the supply-demand constraint for each commodity. In the proposed network, the nodes represent the grey matter (GM) regions providing brain functionality, and the links represent white matter (WM) fiber bundles connecting those regions and delivering information. The commodities can be thought of as the information corresponding to brain activity patterns as obtained for instance by independent component analysis (ICA) of fMRI data. The concept of information

  14. Brain Reward Circuits in Morphine Addiction.

    PubMed

    Kim, Juhwan; Ham, Suji; Hong, Heeok; Moon, Changjong; Im, Heh-In

    2016-09-01

    Morphine is the most potent analgesic for chronic pain, but its clinical use has been limited by the opiate's innate tendency to produce tolerance, severe withdrawal symptoms and rewarding properties with a high risk of relapse. To understand the addictive properties of morphine, past studies have focused on relevant molecular and cellular changes in the brain, highlighting the functional roles of reward-related brain regions. Given the accumulated findings, a recent, emerging trend in morphine research is that of examining the dynamics of neuronal interactions in brain reward circuits under the influence of morphine action. In this review, we highlight recent findings on the roles of several reward circuits involved in morphine addiction based on pharmacological, molecular and physiological evidences.

  15. Brain Reward Circuits in Morphine Addiction

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Juhwan; Ham, Suji; Hong, Heeok; Moon, Changjong; Im, Heh-In

    2016-01-01

    Morphine is the most potent analgesic for chronic pain, but its clinical use has been limited by the opiate’s innate tendency to produce tolerance, severe withdrawal symptoms and rewarding properties with a high risk of relapse. To understand the addictive properties of morphine, past studies have focused on relevant molecular and cellular changes in the brain, highlighting the functional roles of reward-related brain regions. Given the accumulated findings, a recent, emerging trend in morphine research is that of examining the dynamics of neuronal interactions in brain reward circuits under the influence of morphine action. In this review, we highlight recent findings on the roles of several reward circuits involved in morphine addiction based on pharmacological, molecular and physiological evidences. PMID:27506251

  16. Exercise as a Positive Modulator of Brain Function.

    PubMed

    Alkadhi, Karim A

    2017-05-02

    Various forms of exercise have been shown to prevent, restore, or ameliorate a variety of brain disorders including dementias, Parkinson's disease, chronic stress, thyroid disorders, and sleep deprivation, some of which are discussed here. In this review, the effects on brain function of various forms of exercise and exercise mimetics in humans and animal experiments are compared and discussed. Possible mechanisms of the beneficial effects of exercise including the role of neurotrophic factors and others are also discussed.

  17. Organization of Cognitive Functions in the Brain.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Smith, Aaron

    Neuropsychological research on the effects of hemispherectomy-the excision of one of the cerebral hemispheres-in children and adults adds to knowledge about the division of labor between the left cerebral hemisphere, which specializes in language and verbal cognitive functions, and the right hemisphere, which specializes in nonlanguage functions.…

  18. BrainMap: A Database of Functional Neuroanatomy Derived from Human Brain Images

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1991-08-26

    medical imaging techniques such as PET and MRI. We have developed highly quantitative image analysis tools for PET which provide spatial localization of brain function in a standardized spatial frame (AC-PC reference frame). Database strategies have been developed to specifically address the needs of brain mapping. Most of our efforts during this quarter were devoted to the Macintosh version of BrainMap. Software development is proceeding in a timely fashion, and at present we see no major problems with completing this portion of the project on

  19. Leptin and the brain: influences on brain development, cognitive functioning and psychiatric disorders.

    PubMed

    Farr, Olivia M; Tsoukas, Michael A; Mantzoros, Christos S

    2015-01-01

    Receptors of leptin, the prototypical adipokine, are expressed throughout the cortex and several other areas of the brain. Although typically studied for its role in energy intake and expenditure, leptin plays a critical role in many other neurocognitive processes and interacts with various other hormones and neurotransmitters to perform these functions. Here, we review the literature on how leptin influences brain development, neural degradation, Alzheimer's disease, psychiatric disorders, and more complicated cognitive functioning and feeding behaviors. We also discuss modulators of leptin and the leptin receptor as they relate to normal cognitive functioning and may mediate some of the actions of leptin in the brain. Although we are beginning to better understand the critical role leptin plays in normal cognitive functioning, there is much to be discovered.

  20. Differentiating functional brain regions using optical coherence tomography (Conference Presentation)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gil, Daniel A.; Bow, Hansen C.; Shen, Jin-H.; Joos, Karen M.; Skala, Melissa C.

    2017-02-01

    The human brain is made up of functional regions governing movement, sensation, language, and cognition. Unintentional injury during neurosurgery can result in significant neurological deficits and morbidity. The current standard for localizing function to brain tissue during surgery, intraoperative electrical stimulation or recording, significantly increases the risk, time, and cost of the procedure. There is a need for a fast, cost-effective, and high-resolution intraoperative technique that can avoid damage to functional brain regions. We propose that optical coherence tomography (OCT) can fill this niche by imaging differences in the cellular composition and organization of functional brain areas. We hypothesized this would manifest as differences in the attenuation coefficient measured using OCT. Five functional regions (prefrontal, somatosensory, auditory, visual, and cerebellum) were imaged in ex vivo porcine brains (n=3), a model chosen due to a similar white/gray matter ratio as human brains. The attenuation coefficient was calculated using a depth-resolved model and quantitatively validated with Intralipid phantoms across a physiological range of attenuation coefficients (absolute difference < 0.1cm-1). Image analysis was performed on the attenuation coefficient images to derive quantitative endpoints. We observed a statistically significant difference among the median attenuation coefficients of these five regions (one-way ANOVA, p<0.05). Nissl-stained histology will be used to validate our results and correlate OCT-measured attenuation coefficients to neuronal density. Additional development and validation of OCT algorithms to discriminate brain regions are planned to improve the safety and efficacy of neurosurgical procedures such as biopsy, electrode placement, and tissue resection.

  1. Loss of brain function - liver disease

    MedlinePlus

    ... may be made by the body, such as ammonia. Or they may be substances that you take ... MRI EEG Liver function tests Prothrombin time Serum ammonia level Sodium level in the blood Potassium level ...

  2. Decreased functional brain connectivity in adolescents with internet addiction.

    PubMed

    Hong, Soon-Beom; Zalesky, Andrew; Cocchi, Luca; Fornito, Alex; Choi, Eun-Jung; Kim, Ho-Hyun; Suh, Jeong-Eun; Kim, Chang-Dai; Kim, Jae-Won; Yi, Soon-Hyung

    2013-01-01

    Internet addiction has become increasingly recognized as a mental disorder, though its neurobiological basis is unknown. This study used functional neuroimaging to investigate whole-brain functional connectivity in adolescents diagnosed with internet addiction. Based on neurobiological changes seen in other addiction related disorders, it was predicted that connectivity disruptions in adolescents with internet addiction would be most prominent in cortico-striatal circuitry. Participants were 12 adolescents diagnosed with internet addiction and 11 healthy comparison subjects. Resting-state functional magnetic resonance images were acquired, and group differences in brain functional connectivity were analyzed using the network-based statistic. We also analyzed network topology, testing for between-group differences in key graph-based network measures. Adolescents with internet addiction showed reduced functional connectivity spanning a distributed network. The majority of impaired connections involved cortico-subcortical circuits (∼24% with prefrontal and ∼27% with parietal cortex). Bilateral putamen was the most extensively involved subcortical brain region. No between-group difference was observed in network topological measures, including the clustering coefficient, characteristic path length, or the small-worldness ratio. Internet addiction is associated with a widespread and significant decrease of functional connectivity in cortico-striatal circuits, in the absence of global changes in brain functional network topology.

  3. Analyzing complex functional brain networks: Fusing statistics and network science to understand the brain*†

    PubMed Central

    Simpson, Sean L.; Bowman, F. DuBois; Laurienti, Paul J.

    2014-01-01

    Complex functional brain network analyses have exploded over the last decade, gaining traction due to their profound clinical implications. The application of network science (an interdisciplinary offshoot of graph theory) has facilitated these analyses and enabled examining the brain as an integrated system that produces complex behaviors. While the field of statistics has been integral in advancing activation analyses and some connectivity analyses in functional neuroimaging research, it has yet to play a commensurate role in complex network analyses. Fusing novel statistical methods with network-based functional neuroimage analysis will engender powerful analytical tools that will aid in our understanding of normal brain function as well as alterations due to various brain disorders. Here we survey widely used statistical and network science tools for analyzing fMRI network data and discuss the challenges faced in filling some of the remaining methodological gaps. When applied and interpreted correctly, the fusion of network scientific and statistical methods has a chance to revolutionize the understanding of brain function. PMID:25309643

  4. Understanding entangled cerebral networks: a prerequisite for restoring brain function with brain-computer interfaces

    PubMed Central

    Mandonnet, Emmanuel; Duffau, Hugues

    2014-01-01

    Historically, cerebral processing has been conceptualized as a framework based on statically localized functions. However, a growing amount of evidence supports a hodotopical (delocalized) and flexible organization. A number of studies have reported absence of a permanent neurological deficit after massive surgical resections of eloquent brain tissue. These results highlight the tremendous plastic potential of the brain. Understanding anatomo-functional correlates underlying this cerebral reorganization is a prerequisite to restore brain functions through brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) in patients with cerebral diseases, or even to potentiate brain functions in healthy individuals. Here, we review current knowledge of neural networks that could be utilized in the BCIs that enable movements and language. To this end, intraoperative electrical stimulation in awake patients provides valuable information on the cerebral functional maps, their connectomics and plasticity. Overall, these studies indicate that the complex cerebral circuitry that underpins interactions between action, cognition and behavior should be throughly investigated before progress in BCI approaches can be achieved. PMID:24834030

  5. Stereotactic PET atlas of the human brain: Aid for visual interpretation of functional brain images

    SciTech Connect

    Minoshima, S.; Koeppe, R.A.; Frey, A.; Ishihara, M.; Kuhl, D.E.

    1994-06-01

    In the routine analysis of functional brain images obtained by PET, subjective visual interpretation is often used for anatomic localization. To enhance the accuracy and consistency of the anatomic interpretation, a PET stereotactic atlas and localization approach was designed for functional brain images. The PET atlas was constructed from a high-resolution [{sup 18}F]fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) image set of a normal volunteer (a 41-yr-ld woman). The image set was reoriented stereotactically, according to the intercommissural (anterior and posterior commissures) line and transformed to the standard stereotactic atlas coordinates. Cerebral structures were annotated on the transaxial planes using a proportional grid system and surface-rendered images. The stereotactic localization technique was applied to image sets from patients with Alzheimer`s disease, and areas of functional alteration were localized visually by referring to the PET atlas. Major brain structures were identified on both transaxial planes and surface-rendered images. In the stereotactic system, anatomic correspondence between the PET atlas and stereotactically reoriented individual image sets of patients with Alzheimer`s disease facilitated both indirect and direct localization of the cerebral structures. Because rapid stereotactic alignment methods for PET images are now available for routine use, the PET atlas will serve as an aid for visual interpretation of functional brain images in the stereotactic system. Widespread application of stereotactic localization may be used in functional brain images, not only in the research setting, but also in routine clinical situations. 41 refs., 3 figs.

  6. [Functional imaging for brain tumors (perfusion, DTI and MR spectroscopy)].

    PubMed

    Essig, M; Giesel, F; Stieltjes, B; Weber, M A

    2007-06-01

    This contribution considers the possibilities involved with using functional methods in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) diagnostics for brain tumors. Of the functional methods available, we discuss perfusion MRI (PWI), diffusion MRI (DWI and DTI) and MR spectroscopy (H-MRS). In cases of brain tumor, PWI aids in grading and better differentiation in diagnostics as well as for pre-therapeutic planning. In addition, the course of treatment, both after chemo- as well as radiotherapy in combination with surgical treatment, can be optimized. PWI allows better estimates of biological activity and aggressiveness in low grade brain tumors, and in the case of WHO grade II astrocytoma showing anaplasically transformed tumor areas, allows more rapid visu-alization and a better prediction of the course of the disease than conventional MRI diagnostics. Diffusion MRI, due to the directional dependence of the diffusion, can illustrate the course and direction of the nerve fibers, as well as reconstructing the nerve tracts in the cerebrum, pons and cerebellum 3-dimensionally. Diffusion imaging can be used for describing brain tumors, for evaluating contralateral involvement and the course of the nerve fibers near the tumor. Due to its operator dependence, DTI based fiber tracking for defining risk structures is controversial. DWI can also not differentiate accurately between cystic and necrotic brain tumors, or between metastases and brain abscesses. H-MRS provides information on cell membrane metabolism, neuronal integrity and the function of neuronal structures, energy metabolism and the formation of tumors and brain tissue necroses. Diagnostic problems such as the differentiation between neoplastic and non-neoplastic lesions, grading cerebral glioma and distinguishing between primary brain tumors and metastases can be resolved. An additional contribution will discuss the control of the course of glial tumors after radiotherapy.

  7. Laterality patterns of brain functional connectivity: gender effects.

    PubMed

    Tomasi, Dardo; Volkow, Nora D

    2012-06-01

    Lateralization of brain connectivity may be essential for normal brain function and may be sexually dimorphic. Here, we study the laterality patterns of short-range (implicated in functional specialization) and long-range (implicated in functional integration) connectivity and the gender effects on these laterality patterns. Parallel computing was used to quantify short- and long-range functional connectivity densities in 913 healthy subjects. Short-range connectivity was rightward lateralized and most asymmetrical in areas around the lateral sulcus, whereas long-range connectivity was rightward lateralized in lateral sulcus and leftward lateralizated in inferior prefrontal cortex and angular gyrus. The posterior inferior occipital cortex was leftward lateralized (short- and long-range connectivity). Males had greater rightward lateralization of brain connectivity in superior temporal (short- and long-range), inferior frontal, and inferior occipital cortices (short-range), whereas females had greater leftward lateralization of long-range connectivity in the inferior frontal cortex. The greater lateralization of the male's brain (rightward and predominantly short-range) may underlie their greater vulnerability to disorders with disrupted brain asymmetries (schizophrenia, autism).

  8. Laterality Patterns of Brain Functional Connectivity: Gender Effects

    PubMed Central

    Tomasi, Dardo; Volkow, Nora D.

    2012-01-01

    Lateralization of brain connectivity may be essential for normal brain function and may be sexually dimorphic. Here, we study the laterality patterns of short-range (implicated in functional specialization) and long-range (implicated in functional integration) connectivity and the gender effects on these laterality patterns. Parallel computing was used to quantify short- and long-range functional connectivity densities in 913 healthy subjects. Short-range connectivity was rightward lateralized and most asymmetrical in areas around the lateral sulcus, whereas long-range connectivity was rightward lateralized in lateral sulcus and leftward lateralizated in inferior prefrontal cortex and angular gyrus. The posterior inferior occipital cortex was leftward lateralized (short- and long-range connectivity). Males had greater rightward lateralization of brain connectivity in superior temporal (short- and long-range), inferior frontal, and inferior occipital cortices (short-range), whereas females had greater leftward lateralization of long-range connectivity in the inferior frontal cortex. The greater lateralization of the male's brain (rightward and predominantly short-range) may underlie their greater vulnerability to disorders with disrupted brain asymmetries (schizophrenia, autism). PMID:21878483

  9. An Adaptive Complex Network Model for Brain Functional Networks

    PubMed Central

    Gomez Portillo, Ignacio J.; Gleiser, Pablo M.

    2009-01-01

    Brain functional networks are graph representations of activity in the brain, where the vertices represent anatomical regions and the edges their functional connectivity. These networks present a robust small world topological structure, characterized by highly integrated modules connected sparsely by long range links. Recent studies showed that other topological properties such as the degree distribution and the presence (or absence) of a hierarchical structure are not robust, and show different intriguing behaviors. In order to understand the basic ingredients necessary for the emergence of these complex network structures we present an adaptive complex network model for human brain functional networks. The microscopic units of the model are dynamical nodes that represent active regions of the brain, whose interaction gives rise to complex network structures. The links between the nodes are chosen following an adaptive algorithm that establishes connections between dynamical elements with similar internal states. We show that the model is able to describe topological characteristics of human brain networks obtained from functional magnetic resonance imaging studies. In particular, when the dynamical rules of the model allow for integrated processing over the entire network scale-free non-hierarchical networks with well defined communities emerge. On the other hand, when the dynamical rules restrict the information to a local neighborhood, communities cluster together into larger ones, giving rise to a hierarchical structure, with a truncated power law degree distribution. PMID:19738902

  10. Assortative mixing in functional brain networks during epileptic seizures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bialonski, Stephan; Lehnertz, Klaus

    2013-09-01

    We investigate assortativity of functional brain networks before, during, and after one-hundred epileptic seizures with different anatomical onset locations. We construct binary functional networks from multi-channel electroencephalographic data recorded from 60 epilepsy patients; and from time-resolved estimates of the assortativity coefficient, we conclude that positive degree-degree correlations are inherent to seizure dynamics. While seizures evolve, an increasing assortativity indicates a segregation of the underlying functional network into groups of brain regions that are only sparsely interconnected, if at all. Interestingly, assortativity decreases already prior to seizure end. Together with previous observations of characteristic temporal evolutions of global statistical properties and synchronizability of epileptic brain networks, our findings may help to gain deeper insights into the complicated dynamics underlying generation, propagation, and termination of seizures.

  11. Can we observe epigenetic effects on human brain function?

    PubMed Central

    Nikolova, Yuliya S.; Hariri, Ahmad R.

    2015-01-01

    Imaging genetics has identified many contributions of DNA sequence variation to individual differences in brain function, behavior, and risk for psychopathology. Recent studies have extended this work beyond the genome by mapping epigenetic differences, specifically gene methylation in peripherally assessed DNA, onto variability in behaviorally and clinically relevant brain function. These data have generated understandable enthusiasm for the potential of such research to illuminate biological mechanisms of risk. Here, we use our research on effects of genetic and epigenetic variation in the human serotonin transporter on brain function to generate a guardedly optimistic opinion that available data encourages continued research in this direction, and suggest strategies to promote faster progress moving forward. PMID:26051383

  12. Neuropsychological assessment of executive functions following pediatric traumatic brain injury.

    PubMed

    Gaines, K Drorit; Soper, Henry V

    2016-09-27

    Assessment of executive functions in the adult is best captured at the stage where full maturation of brain development occurs. Assessment of executive functions of children, however, is considerably more complicated. First, assessment of executive functioning in children represents a snapshot of these developing functions at a particular time linked stage, which may have implications for further development. Second, neuropsychological measures available to assess executive functions in children are limited in number and scope and may not be sensitive to the gradual developmental changes. The present article provides an overview of the salient neurodevelopmental stages of executive functioning and discusses the utilization of recently developed neuropsychological measures to assess these stages. Comments on clinical implications of these findings regarding Traumatic Brain Injury will be provided.

  13. Netrin 1 regulates blood-brain barrier function and neuroinflammation.

    PubMed

    Podjaski, Cornelia; Alvarez, Jorge I; Bourbonniere, Lyne; Larouche, Sandra; Terouz, Simone; Bin, Jenea M; Lécuyer, Marc-André; Saint-Laurent, Olivia; Larochelle, Catherine; Darlington, Peter J; Arbour, Nathalie; Antel, Jack P; Kennedy, Timothy E; Prat, Alexandre

    2015-06-01

    Blood-brain barrier function is driven by the influence of astrocyte-secreted factors. During neuroinflammatory responses the blood-brain barrier is compromised resulting in central nervous system damage and exacerbated pathology. Here, we identified endothelial netrin 1 induction as a vascular response to astrocyte-derived sonic hedgehog that promotes autocrine barrier properties during homeostasis and increases with inflammation. Netrin 1 supports blood-brain barrier integrity by upregulating endothelial junctional protein expression, while netrin 1 knockout mice display disorganized tight junction protein expression and barrier breakdown. Upon inflammatory conditions, blood-brain barrier endothelial cells significantly upregulated netrin 1 levels in vitro and in situ, which prevented junctional breach and endothelial cell activation. Finally, netrin 1 treatment during experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis significantly reduced blood-brain barrier disruption and decreased clinical and pathological indices of disease severity. Our results demonstrate that netrin 1 is an important regulator of blood-brain barrier maintenance that protects the central nervous system against inflammatory conditions such as multiple sclerosis and experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis. © The Author (2015). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Guarantors of Brain. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  14. Brain functional domains inform therapeutic interventions in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder and pediatric bipolar disorder

    PubMed Central

    Passarotti, Alessandra M; Pavuluri, Mani N

    2011-01-01

    A deeper understanding of how the relationships between impulsivity, reward systems and executive function deficits may be similar or different in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and pediatric bipolar disorder (PBD) is fundamental for better defining phenotypy in these two developmental illnesses, and moving towards improved treatment and intervention. We focus our article on recent neurocognitive and neuroimaging data examining the behavioral and neural aspects of poor behavior regulation, response inhibition and reward systems in ADHD and PBD. In light of recent research evidence, we propose that the common behavioral manifestations of impulsivity in ADHD and PBD may indeed originate from different neural mechanisms mediated by altered reward systems. In order to define and differentiate these mechanisms, unlike previous approaches, our theoretical model examines the interface of the dorsal frontostriatal circuit, involved in behavior regulation, and the ventral frontostriatal circuit, which is involved in reward-related and affect processes. Preliminary evidence suggests that the neural systems involved in impulsivity, reward systems and executive function engage differently in the two illnesses. In PBD, `emotional impulsivity' is predominantly `bottom-up' and emotionally/motivationally driven, and stems from ventral frontostriatal circuitry dysfunction. By contrast, in ADHD `cognitive impulsivity' is predominantly `top-down' and more `cognitively driven', and stems from dorsal frontostriatal dysfunction. We discuss this evidence in view of clinically relevant questions and implications for illness-based intervention. We conclude that the reward-related mechanisms underlying the interactions between executive function, behavior regulation and impulsivity in PBD and ADHD may be differentially compromised, and in accordance differently shape the clinical symptoms of impulsivity and goal-directed behavior. PMID:21651336

  15. Whole brain resting state functional connectivity abnormalities in schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Venkataraman, Archana; Whitford, Thomas J; Westin, Carl-Fredrik; Golland, Polina; Kubicki, Marek

    2012-08-01

    Schizophrenia has been associated with disturbances in brain connectivity; however the exact nature of these disturbances is not fully understood. Measuring temporal correlations between the functional MRI time courses of spatially disparate brain regions obtained during rest has recently emerged as a popular paradigm for estimating brain connectivity. Previous resting state studies in schizophrenia explored connections related to particular clinical or cognitive symptoms (connectivity within a-priori selected networks), or connections restricted to functional networks obtained from resting state analysis. Relatively little has been done to understand global brain connectivity in schizophrenia. Eighteen patients with chronic schizophrenia and 18 healthy volunteers underwent a resting state fMRI scan on a 3T magnet. Whole brain temporal correlations have been estimated using resting-state fMRI data and free surfer cortical parcellations. A multivariate classification method was then used to indentify brain connections that distinguish schizophrenia patients from healthy controls. The classification procedure achieved a prediction accuracy of 75% in differentiating between groups on the basis of their functional connectivity. Relative to controls, schizophrenia patients exhibited co-existing patterns of increased connectivity between parietal and frontal regions, and decreased connectivity between parietal and temporal regions, and between the temporal cortices bilaterally. The decreased parieto-temporal connectivity was associated with the severity of patients' positive symptoms, while increased fronto-parietal connectivity was associated with patients' negative and general symptoms. Our analysis revealed two co-existing patterns of functional connectivity abnormalities in schizophrenia, each related to different clinical profiles. Such results provide further evidence that abnormalities in brain connectivity, characteristic of schizophrenia, are directly related to

  16. Reduction of brain kynurenic acid improves cognitive function.

    PubMed

    Kozak, Rouba; Campbell, Brian M; Strick, Christine A; Horner, Weldon; Hoffmann, William E; Kiss, Tamas; Chapin, Douglas S; McGinnis, Dina; Abbott, Amanda L; Roberts, Brooke M; Fonseca, Kari; Guanowsky, Victor; Young, Damon A; Seymour, Patricia A; Dounay, Amy; Hajos, Mihaly; Williams, Graham V; Castner, Stacy A

    2014-08-06

    The elevation of kynurenic acid (KYNA) observed in schizophrenic patients may contribute to core symptoms arising from glutamate hypofunction, including cognitive impairments. Although increased KYNA levels reduce excitatory neurotransmission, KYNA has been proposed to act as an endogenous antagonist at the glycine site of the glutamate NMDA receptor (NMDAR) and as a negative allosteric modulator at the α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. Levels of KYNA are elevated in CSF and the postmortem brain of schizophrenia patients, and these elevated levels of KYNA could contribute to NMDAR hypofunction and the cognitive deficits and negative symptoms associated with this disease. However, the impact of endogenously produced KYNA on brain function and behavior is less well understood due to a paucity of pharmacological tools. To address this issue, we identified PF-04859989, a brain-penetrable inhibitor of kynurenine aminotransferase II (KAT II), the enzyme responsible for most brain KYNA synthesis. In rats, systemic administration of PF-04859989 dose-dependently reduced brain KYNA to as little as 28% of basal levels, and prevented amphetamine- and ketamine-induced disruption of auditory gating and improved performance in a sustained attention task. It also prevented ketamine-induced disruption of performance in a working memory task and a spatial memory task in rodents and nonhuman primates, respectively. Together, these findings support the hypotheses that endogenous KYNA impacts cognitive function and that inhibition of KAT II, and consequent lowering of endogenous brain KYNA levels, improves cognitive performance under conditions considered relevant for schizophrenia.

  17. Functional Connectivity Hubs and Networks in the Awake Marmoset Brain

    PubMed Central

    Belcher, Annabelle M.; Yen, Cecil Chern-Chyi; Notardonato, Lucia; Ross, Thomas J.; Volkow, Nora D.; Yang, Yihong; Stein, Elliot A.; Silva, Afonso C.; Tomasi, Dardo

    2016-01-01

    In combination with advances in analytical methods, resting-state fMRI is allowing unprecedented access to a better understanding of the network organization of the brain. Increasing evidence suggests that this architecture may incorporate highly functionally connected nodes, or “hubs”, and we have recently proposed local functional connectivity density (lFCD) mapping to identify highly-connected nodes in the human brain. Here, we imaged awake nonhuman primates to test whether, like the human brain, the marmoset brain contains FC hubs. Ten adult common marmosets (Callithrix jacchus) were acclimated to mild, comfortable restraint using individualized helmets. Following restraint training, resting BOLD data were acquired during eight consecutive 10 min scans for each subject. lFCD revealed prominent cortical and subcortical hubs of connectivity across the marmoset brain; specifically, in primary and secondary visual cortices (V1/V2), higher-order visual association areas (A19M/V6[DM]), posterior parietal and posterior cingulate areas (PGM and A23b/A31), thalamus, dorsal and ventral striatal areas (caudate, putamen, lateral septal nucleus, and anterior cingulate cortex (A24a). lFCD hubs were highly connected to widespread areas of the brain, and further revealed significant network-network interactions. These data provide a baseline platform for future investigations in a nonhuman primate model of the brain’s network topology. PMID:26973476

  18. Functional brain regeneration in the acoel worm Symsagittifera roscoffensis

    PubMed Central

    Sprecher, Simon G.; Bernardo-Garcia, F. Javier; van Giesen, Lena; Hartenstein, Volker; Reichert, Heinrich; Neves, Ricardo; Bailly, Xavier; Martinez, Pedro; Brauchle, Michael

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT The ability of some animals to regrow their head and brain after decapitation provides a striking example of the regenerative capacity within the animal kingdom. The acoel worm Symsagittifera roscoffensis can regrow its head, brain and sensory head organs within only a few weeks after decapitation. How rapidly and to what degree it also reacquires its functionality to control behavior however remains unknown. We provide here a neuroanatomical map of the brain neuropils of the adult S. roscoffensis and show that after decapitation a normal neuroanatomical organization of the brain is restored in the majority of animals. By testing different behaviors we further show that functionality of both sensory perception and the underlying brain architecture are restored within weeks after decapitation. Interestingly not all behaviors are restored at the same speed and to the same extent. While we find that phototaxis recovered rapidly, geotaxis is not restored within 7 weeks. Our findings show that regeneration of the head, sensory organs and brain result in the restoration of directed navigation behavior, suggesting a tight coordination in the regeneration of certain sensory organs with that of their underlying neural circuits. Thus, at least in S. roscoffensis, the regenerative capacity of different sensory modalities follows distinct paths. PMID:26581588

  19. Dynamic functional brain networks involved in simple visual discrimination learning.

    PubMed

    Fidalgo, Camino; Conejo, Nélida María; González-Pardo, Héctor; Arias, Jorge Luis

    2014-10-01

    Visual discrimination tasks have been widely used to evaluate many types of learning and memory processes. However, little is known about the brain regions involved at different stages of visual discrimination learning. We used cytochrome c oxidase histochemistry to evaluate changes in regional brain oxidative metabolism during visual discrimination learning in a water-T maze at different time points during training. As compared with control groups, the results of the present study reveal the gradual activation of cortical (prefrontal and temporal cortices) and subcortical brain regions (including the striatum and the hippocampus) associated to the mastery of a simple visual discrimination task. On the other hand, the brain regions involved and their functional interactions changed progressively over days of training. Regions associated with novelty, emotion, visuo-spatial orientation and motor aspects of the behavioral task seem to be relevant during the earlier phase of training, whereas a brain network comprising the prefrontal cortex was found along the whole learning process. This study highlights the relevance of functional interactions among brain regions to investigate learning and memory processes. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Hemispheric asymmetry of electroencephalography-based functional brain networks.

    PubMed

    Jalili, Mahdi

    2014-11-12

    Electroencephalography (EEG)-based functional brain networks have been investigated frequently in health and disease. It has been shown that a number of graph theory metrics are disrupted in brain disorders. EEG-based brain networks are often studied in the whole-brain framework, where all the nodes are grouped into a single network. In this study, we studied the brain networks in two hemispheres and assessed whether there are any hemispheric-specific patterns in the properties of the networks. To this end, resting state closed-eyes EEGs from 44 healthy individuals were processed and the network structures were extracted separately for each hemisphere. We examined neurophysiologically meaningful graph theory metrics: global and local efficiency measures. The global efficiency did not show any hemispheric asymmetry, whereas the local connectivity showed rightward asymmetry for a range of intermediate density values for the constructed networks. Furthermore, the age of the participants showed significant direct correlations with the global efficiency of the left hemisphere, but only in the right hemisphere, with local connectivity. These results suggest that only local connectivity of EEG-based functional networks is associated with brain hemispheres.

  1. Estimating brain's functional graph from the structural graph's Laplacian

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abdelnour, F.; Dayan, M.; Devinsky, O.; Thesen, T.; Raj, A.

    2015-09-01

    The interplay between the brain's function and structure has been of immense interest to the neuroscience and connectomics communities. In this work we develop a simple linear model relating the structural network and the functional network. We propose that the two networks are related by the structural network's Laplacian up to a shift. The model is simple to implement and gives accurate prediction of function's eigenvalues at the subject level and its eigenvectors at group level.

  2. Human brain networks function in connectome-specific harmonic waves.

    PubMed

    Atasoy, Selen; Donnelly, Isaac; Pearson, Joel

    2016-01-21

    A key characteristic of human brain activity is coherent, spatially distributed oscillations forming behaviour-dependent brain networks. However, a fundamental principle underlying these networks remains unknown. Here we report that functional networks of the human brain are predicted by harmonic patterns, ubiquitous throughout nature, steered by the anatomy of the human cerebral cortex, the human connectome. We introduce a new technique extending the Fourier basis to the human connectome. In this new frequency-specific representation of cortical activity, that we call 'connectome harmonics', oscillatory networks of the human brain at rest match harmonic wave patterns of certain frequencies. We demonstrate a neural mechanism behind the self-organization of connectome harmonics with a continuous neural field model of excitatory-inhibitory interactions on the connectome. Remarkably, the critical relation between the neural field patterns and the delicate excitation-inhibition balance fits the neurophysiological changes observed during the loss and recovery of consciousness.

  3. The microbiota-gut-brain axis in functional gastrointestinal disorders.

    PubMed

    De Palma, Giada; Collins, Stephen M; Bercik, Premysl

    2014-01-01

    Functional gastrointestinal disorders (FGIDs) are highly prevalent and pose a significant burden on health care and society, and impact patients' quality of life. FGIDs comprise a heterogeneous group of disorders, with unclear underlying pathophysiology. They are considered to result from the interaction of altered gut physiology and psychological factors via the gut-brain axis, where brain and gut symptoms are reciprocally influencing each other's expression. Intestinal microbiota, as a part of the gut-brain axis, plays a central role in FGIDs. Patients with Irritable Bowel Syndrome, a prototype of FGIDs, display altered composition of the gut microbiota compared with healthy controls and benefit, at the gastrointestinal and psychological levels, from the use of probiotics and antibiotics. This review aims to recapitulate the available literature on FGIDs and microbiota-gut-brain axis.

  4. Human brain networks function in connectome-specific harmonic waves

    PubMed Central

    Atasoy, Selen; Donnelly, Isaac; Pearson, Joel

    2016-01-01

    A key characteristic of human brain activity is coherent, spatially distributed oscillations forming behaviour-dependent brain networks. However, a fundamental principle underlying these networks remains unknown. Here we report that functional networks of the human brain are predicted by harmonic patterns, ubiquitous throughout nature, steered by the anatomy of the human cerebral cortex, the human connectome. We introduce a new technique extending the Fourier basis to the human connectome. In this new frequency-specific representation of cortical activity, that we call ‘connectome harmonics', oscillatory networks of the human brain at rest match harmonic wave patterns of certain frequencies. We demonstrate a neural mechanism behind the self-organization of connectome harmonics with a continuous neural field model of excitatory–inhibitory interactions on the connectome. Remarkably, the critical relation between the neural field patterns and the delicate excitation–inhibition balance fits the neurophysiological changes observed during the loss and recovery of consciousness. PMID:26792267

  5. The microbiota-gut-brain axis in functional gastrointestinal disorders

    PubMed Central

    De Palma, Giada; Collins, Stephen M; Bercik, Premysl

    2014-01-01

    Functional gastrointestinal disorders (FGIDs) are highly prevalent and pose a significant burden on health care and society, and impact patients’ quality of life. FGIDs comprise a heterogeneous group of disorders, with unclear underlying pathophysiology. They are considered to result from the interaction of altered gut physiology and psychological factors via the gut-brain axis, where brain and gut symptoms are reciprocally influencing each other’s expression. Intestinal microbiota, as a part of the gut-brain axis, plays a central role in FGIDs. Patients with Irritable Bowel Syndrome, a prototype of FGIDs, display altered composition of the gut microbiota compared with healthy controls and benefit, at the gastrointestinal and psychological levels, from the use of probiotics and antibiotics. This review aims to recapitulate the available literature on FGIDs and microbiota-gut-brain axis. PMID:24921926

  6. Hierarchical organization unveiled by functional connectivity in complex brain networks.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Changsong; Zemanová, Lucia; Zamora, Gorka; Hilgetag, Claus C; Kurths, Jürgen

    2006-12-08

    How do diverse dynamical patterns arise from the topology of complex networks? We study synchronization dynamics in the cortical brain network of the cat, which displays a hierarchically clustered organization, by modeling each node (cortical area) with a subnetwork of interacting excitable neurons. We find that in the biologically plausible regime the dynamics exhibits a hierarchical modular organization, in particular, revealing functional clusters coinciding with the anatomical communities at different scales. Our results provide insights into the relationship between network topology and functional organization of complex brain networks.

  7. Darwin's evolution theory, brain oscillations, and complex brain function in a new "Cartesian view".

    PubMed

    Başar, Erol; Güntekin, Bahar

    2009-01-01

    Comparatively analyses of electrophysiological correlates across species during evolution, alpha activity during brain maturation, and alpha activity in complex cognitive processes are presented to illustrate a new multidimensional "Cartesian System" brain function. The main features are: (1) The growth of the alpha activity during evolution, increase of alpha during cognitive processes, and decrease of the alpha entropy during evolution provide an indicator for evolution of brain cognitive performance. (2) Human children younger than 3 years are unable to produce higher cognitive processes and do not show alpha activity till the age of 3 years. The mature brain can perform higher cognitive processes and demonstrates regular alpha activity. (3) Alpha activity also is significantly associated with highly complex cognitive processes, such as the recognition of facial expressions. The neural activity reflected by these brain oscillations can be considered as constituent "building blocks" for a great number of functions. An overarching statement on the alpha function is presented by extended analyzes with multiple dimensions that constitute a "Cartesian Hyperspace" as the basis for oscillatory function. Theoretical implications are considered.

  8. Thyroid, brain and mood modulation in affective disorder: insights from molecular research and functional brain imaging.

    PubMed

    Bauer, M; London, E D; Silverman, D H; Rasgon, N; Kirchheiner, J; Whybrow, P C

    2003-11-01

    The efficacy resulting from adjunctive use of supraphysiological doses of levothyroxine has emerged as a promising approach to therapy and prophylaxis for refractory mood disorders. Most patients with mood disorders who receive treatment with supraphysiological doses of levothyroxine have normal peripheral thyroid hormone levels, and also respond differently to the hormone and tolerate it better than healthy individuals and patients with primary thyroid diseases. Progress in molecular and functional brain imaging techniques has provided a new understanding of these phenomena, illuminating the relationship between thyroid function, mood modulation and behavior. Thyroid hormones are widely distributed in the brain and have a multitude of effects on the central nervous system. Notably many of the limbic system structures where thyroid hormone receptors are prevalent have been implicated in the pathogenesis of mood disorders. The influence of the thyroid system on neurotransmitters (particularly serotonin and norepinephrine), which putatively play a major role in the regulation of mood and behavior, may contribute to the mechanisms of mood modulation. Recent functional brain imaging studies using positron emission tomography (PET) with [ (18)F]-fluorodeoxyglucose demonstrated that thyroid hormone treatment with levothyroxine affects regional brain metabolism in patients with hypothyroidism and bipolar disorder. Theses studies confirm that thyroid hormones are active in modulating metabolic function in the mature adult brain, and provide intriging neuroanatomic clues that may guide future research.

  9. Loss of functional GABAA receptors in the Alzheimer diseased brain

    PubMed Central

    Limon, Agenor; Reyes-Ruiz, Jorge Mauricio; Miledi, Ricardo

    2012-01-01

    The cholinergic and glutamatergic neurotransmission systems are known to be severely disrupted in Alzheimer's disease (AD). GABAergic neurotransmission, in contrast, is generally thought to be well preserved. Evidence from animal models and human postmortem tissue suggest GABAergic remodeling in the AD brain. Nevertheless, there is no information on changes, if any, in the electrophysiological properties of human native GABA receptors as a consequence of AD. To gain such information, we have microtransplanted cell membranes, isolated from temporal cortices of control and AD brains, into Xenopus oocytes, and recorded the electrophysiological activity of the transplanted GABA receptors. We found an age-dependent reduction of GABA currents in the AD brain. This reduction was larger when the AD membranes were obtained from younger subjects. We also found that GABA currents from AD brains have a faster rate of desensitization than those from non-AD brains. Furthermore, GABA receptors from AD brains were slightly, but significantly, less sensitive to GABA than receptors from non-AD brains. The reduction of GABA currents in AD was associated with reductions of mRNA and protein of the principal GABA receptor subunits normally present in the temporal cortex. Pairwise analysis of the transcripts within control and AD groups and analyses of the proportion of GABA receptor subunits revealed down-regulation of α1 and γ2 subunits in AD. In contrast, the proportions of α2, β1, and γ1 transcripts were up-regulated in the AD brains. Our data support a functional remodeling of GABAergic neurotransmission in the human AD brain. PMID:22691495

  10. The Role of Noise in Brain Function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roy, S.; Llinás, R.

    2012-12-01

    Noise plays a fundamental role in all living organisms from the earliest prokaryotes to advanced mammalian forms, such as ourselves. In the context of living organisms, the term 'noise' usually refers to the variance amongst measurements obtained from repeated identical experimental conditions, or from output signals from these systems. It is noteworthy that both these conditions are universally characterized by the presence of background fluctuations. In non-biological systems, such as electronics or in communications sciences, where the aim is to send error-free messages, noise was generally regarded as a problem. The discovery of Stochastic Resonances (SR) in non-linear dynamics brought a shift of perception where noise, rather than representing a problem, became fundamental to system function, especially so in biology. The question now is: to what extent is biological function dependent on random noise. Indeed, it seems feasible that noise also plays an important role in neuronal communication and oscillatory synchronization. Given this approach, it follows that determining Fisher information content could be relevant in neuronal communication. It also seems possible that the principle of least time, and that of the sum over histories, could be important basic principles in understanding the coherence dynamics responsible for action and perception. Ultimately, external noise cancellation combined with intrinsic noise signal embedding and, the use of the principle of least time may be considered an essential step in the organization of central nervous system (CNS) function.

  11. Nutrition, brain function and cognitive performance.

    PubMed

    Lieberman, Harris R

    2003-06-01

    Military interest in the effects of nutritional factors on cognitive function has stimulated considerable research on a variety of food constituents. This paper will review the research on the amino acids tryptophan and tyrosine, caffeine and carbohydrate. It will focus on research that addresses the potential utility of these compounds in military applications, particularly the acute, as opposed to chronic, effects of these substances on cognitive functions such as alertness, vigilance and resistance to stress. Caffeine, the most intensively studied food constituent, has unequivocal beneficial effects on vigilance, and in sleep deprived individuals it enhances other cognitive functions as well. Tryptophan, although it clearly has sedative-like properties, has not been extensively studied by military laboratories for use as a hypnotic, due to safety concerns. Tyrosine has been examined in animal models and human studies, and appears to prevent the substantial decline in various aspects of cognitive performance and mood associated with many kinds of acute stress. Carbohydrate supplementation appears to enhance cognitive performance in soldiers engaged in sustained, intense physical activities that expend high levels of energy.

  12. Maturation of widely distributed brain function subserves cognitive development.

    PubMed

    Luna, B; Thulborn, K R; Munoz, D P; Merriam, E P; Garver, K E; Minshew, N J; Keshavan, M S; Genovese, C R; Eddy, W F; Sweeney, J A

    2001-05-01

    Cognitive and brain maturational changes continue throughout late childhood and adolescence. During this time, increasing cognitive control over behavior enhances the voluntary suppression of reflexive/impulsive response tendencies. Recently, with the advent of functional MRI, it has become possible to characterize changes in brain activity during cognitive development. In order to investigate the cognitive and brain maturation subserving the ability to voluntarily suppress context-inappropriate behavior, we tested 8-30 year olds in an oculomotor response-suppression task. Behavioral results indicated that adult-like ability to inhibit prepotent responses matured gradually through childhood and adolescence. Functional MRI results indicated that brain activation in frontal, parietal, striatal, and thalamic regions increased progressively from childhood to adulthood. Prefrontal cortex was more active in adolescents than in children or adults; adults demonstrated greater activation in the lateral cerebellum than younger subjects. These results suggest that efficient top-down modulation of reflexive acts may not be fully developed until adulthood and provide evidence that maturation of function across widely distributed brain regions lays the groundwork for enhanced voluntary control of behavior during cognitive development.

  13. Interactions between occlusion and human brain function activities.

    PubMed

    Ohkubo, C; Morokuma, M; Yoneyama, Y; Matsuda, R; Lee, J S

    2013-02-01

    There are few review articles in the area of human research that focus on the interactions between occlusion and brain function. This systematic review discusses the effect of occlusion on the health of the entire body with a focus on brain function. Available relevant articles in English from 1999 to 2011 were assessed in an online database and as hard copies in libraries. The selected 19 articles were classified into the following five categories: chewing and tongue movements, clenching and grinding, occlusal splints and occlusal interference, prosthetic rehabilitation, and pain and stimulation. The relationships between the brain activity observed in the motor and sensory cortices and movements of the oral and maxillofacial area, such as those produced by gum chewing, tapping and clenching, were investigated. It was found that the sensorimotor cortex was also affected by the placement of the occlusal interference devices, splints and implant prostheses. Brain activity may change depending on the strength of the movements in the oral and maxillofacial area. Therefore, mastication and other movements stimulate the activity in the cerebral cortex and may be helpful in preventing degradation of a brain function. However, these findings must be verified by evidence gathered from more subjects.

  14. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy improves cognitive functioning after brain injury.

    PubMed

    Liu, Su; Shen, Guangyu; Deng, Shukun; Wang, Xiubin; Wu, Qinfeng; Guo, Aisong

    2013-12-15

    Hyperbaric oxygen therapy has been widely applied and recognized in the treatment of brain injury; however, the correlation between the protective effect of hyperbaric oxygen therapy and changes of metabolites in the brain remains unclear. To investigate the effect and potential mechanism of hyperbaric oxygen therapy on cognitive functioning in rats, we established traumatic brain injury models using Feeney's free falling method. We treated rat models with hyperbaric oxygen therapy at 0.2 MPa for 60 minutes per day. The Morris water maze test for spatial navigation showed that the average escape latency was significantly prolonged and cognitive function decreased in rats with brain injury. After treatment with hyperbaric oxygen therapy for 1 and 2 weeks, the rats' spatial learning and memory abilities were improved. Hydrogen proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy analysis showed that the N-acetylaspartate/creatine ratio in the hippocampal CA3 region was significantly increased at 1 week, and the N-acetylaspartate/choline ratio was significantly increased at 2 weeks after hyperbaric oxygen therapy. Nissl staining and immunohistochemical staining showed that the number of nerve cells and Nissl bodies in the hippocampal CA3 region was significantly increased, and glial fibrillary acidic protein positive cells were decreased after a 2-week hyperbaric oxygen therapy treatment. Our findings indicate that hyperbaric oxygen therapy significantly improves cognitive functioning in rats with traumatic brain injury, and the potential mechanism is mediated by metabolic changes and nerve cell restoration in the hippocampal CA3 region.

  15. Homocysteine, Liver Function Derangement and Brain Atrophy in Alcoholics.

    PubMed

    Fernández-Rodríguez, Camino; González-Reimers, Emilio; Quintero-Platt, Geraldine; de la Vega-Prieto, María José; Pérez-Hernández, Onán; Martín-González, Candelaria; Espelosín-Ortega, Elisa; Romero-Acevedo, Lucía; Santolaria-Fernández, Francisco

    2016-11-01

    Hyperhomocysteinemia may be involved in the development of brain atrophy in alcoholics. Its pathogenesis is multifactorial. In the present study, we analyse the relationship between homocysteine levels and brain atrophy, and the relative weight of co-existing factors such as liver function impairment, the amount of ethanol consumed, serum vitamin B12, B6, and folic acid levels on homocysteine levels and brain alterations in alcoholic patients. We included 59 patients admitted to this hospital for major withdrawal symptoms and 24 controls. The mini-mental state examination test and a brain computed tomography (CT) scan were performed and several indices were calculated. Serum levels of homocysteine, folic acid, vitamin B6 and vitamin B12 were determined. Liver function was assessed by Child-Pugh score. The daily consumption of ethanol in grams per day and years of addiction were recorded. A total of 83.6% and 80% of the patients showed cerebellar or frontal atrophy, respectively. Patients showed altered values of brain indices, higher levels of homocysteine and vitamin B12, but lower levels of folic acid, compared with controls. Homocysteine, B12 and liver function variables showed significant correlations with brain CT indices. Multivariate analyses disclosed that Pugh's score, albumin and bilirubin were independently related to cerebellar atrophy, frontal atrophy, cella index or ventricular index. Serum vitamin B12 was the only factor independently related to Evans index. It was also related to cella index, but after bilirubin. Homocysteine levels were independently related to ventricular index, but after bilirubin. Vitamin B12 and homocysteine levels are higher among alcoholics. Liver function derangement, vitamin B12 and homocysteine are all independently related to brain atrophy, although not to cognitive alterations. Hyperhomocysteinemia has been described in alcoholics and may be related to brain atrophy, a reversible condition with an obscure pathogenesis

  16. Effects of Soccer Heading on Brain Structure and Function.

    PubMed

    Rodrigues, Ana Carolina; Lasmar, Rodrigo Pace; Caramelli, Paulo

    2016-01-01

    Soccer is the most popular sport in the world, with more than 265 million players worldwide, including professional and amateur ones. Soccer is unique in comparison to other sports, as it is the only sport in which participants purposely use their head to hit the ball. Heading is considered as an offensive or defensive move whereby the player's unprotected head is used to deliberately impact the ball and direct it during play. A soccer player can be subjected to an average of 6-12 incidents of heading the ball per competitive game, where the ball reaches high velocities. Moreover, in practice sessions, heading training, which involves heading the ball repeatedly at low velocities, is common. Although the scientific community, as well as the media, has focused on the effects of concussions in contact sports, the role of subconcussive impacts, as it can occur during heading, has recently gained attention, considering that it may represent an additional mechanism of cumulative brain injury. The purpose of this study is to review the existing literature regarding the effects of soccer heading on brain structure and function. Only in the last years, some investigations have addressed the impact of heading on brain structure, by using neuroimaging techniques. Similarly, there have been some recent studies investigating biochemical markers of brain injury in soccer players. There is evidence of association between heading and abnormal brain structure, but the data are still preliminary. Also, some studies have suggested that subconcussive head impacts, as heading, could cause cognitive impairment, whereas others have not corroborated this finding. Questions persist as to whether or not heading is deleterious to cognitive functioning. Further studies, especially with longitudinal designs, are needed to clarify the clinical significance of heading as a cause of brain injury and to identify risk factors. Such investigations might contribute to the establishment of safety

  17. Effects of Soccer Heading on Brain Structure and Function

    PubMed Central

    Rodrigues, Ana Carolina; Lasmar, Rodrigo Pace; Caramelli, Paulo

    2016-01-01

    Soccer is the most popular sport in the world, with more than 265 million players worldwide, including professional and amateur ones. Soccer is unique in comparison to other sports, as it is the only sport in which participants purposely use their head to hit the ball. Heading is considered as an offensive or defensive move whereby the player’s unprotected head is used to deliberately impact the ball and direct it during play. A soccer player can be subjected to an average of 6–12 incidents of heading the ball per competitive game, where the ball reaches high velocities. Moreover, in practice sessions, heading training, which involves heading the ball repeatedly at low velocities, is common. Although the scientific community, as well as the media, has focused on the effects of concussions in contact sports, the role of subconcussive impacts, as it can occur during heading, has recently gained attention, considering that it may represent an additional mechanism of cumulative brain injury. The purpose of this study is to review the existing literature regarding the effects of soccer heading on brain structure and function. Only in the last years, some investigations have addressed the impact of heading on brain structure, by using neuroimaging techniques. Similarly, there have been some recent studies investigating biochemical markers of brain injury in soccer players. There is evidence of association between heading and abnormal brain structure, but the data are still preliminary. Also, some studies have suggested that subconcussive head impacts, as heading, could cause cognitive impairment, whereas others have not corroborated this finding. Questions persist as to whether or not heading is deleterious to cognitive functioning. Further studies, especially with longitudinal designs, are needed to clarify the clinical significance of heading as a cause of brain injury and to identify risk factors. Such investigations might contribute to the establishment of safety

  18. Expectation modulates neural representations of valence throughout the human brain

    PubMed Central

    Ramayya, Ashwin G.; Pedisich, Isaac; Kahana, Michael J.

    2015-01-01

    The brain's sensitivity to unexpected gains or losses plays an important role in our ability to learn new behaviors (Rescorla and Wagner, 1972; Sutton and Barto, 1990). Recent work suggests that gains and losses are ubiquitously encoded throughout the human brain (Vickery et al., 2011), however, the extent to which reward expectation modulates these valence representations is not known. To address this question we analyzed recordings from 4,306 intracranially implanted electrodes in 39 neurosurgical patients as they performed a two-alternative probability learning task. Using high-frequency activity (HFA, 70-200 Hz) as an indicator of local firing rates, we found that expectation modulated reward-related neural activity in widespread brain regions, including regions that receive sparse inputs from midbrain dopaminergic neurons. The strength of unexpected gain signals predicted subjects’ abilities to encode stimulus-reward associations. Thus, neural signals that are functionally related to learning are widely distributed throughout the human brain. PMID:25937489

  19. Functional constraints in the evolution of brain circuits

    PubMed Central

    Bosman, Conrado A.; Aboitiz, Francisco

    2015-01-01

    Regardless of major anatomical and neurodevelopmental differences, the vertebrate isocortex shows a remarkably well-conserved organization. In the isocortex, reciprocal connections between excitatory and inhibitory neurons are distributed across multiple layers, encompassing modular, dynamical and recurrent functional networks during information processing. These dynamical brain networks are often organized in neuronal assemblies interacting through rhythmic phase relationships. Accordingly, these oscillatory interactions are observed across multiple brain scale levels, and they are associated with several sensory, motor, and cognitive processes. Most notably, oscillatory interactions are also found in the complete spectrum of vertebrates. Yet, it is unknown why this functional organization is so well conserved in evolution. In this perspective, we propose some ideas about how functional requirements of the isocortex can account for the evolutionary stability observed in microcircuits across vertebrates. We argue that isocortex architectures represent canonical microcircuits resulting from: (i) the early selection of neuronal architectures based on the oscillatory excitatory-inhibitory balance, which lead to the implementation of compartmentalized oscillations and (ii) the subsequent emergence of inferential coding strategies (predictive coding), which are able to expand computational capacities. We also argue that these functional constraints may be the result of several advantages that oscillatory activity contributes to brain network processes, such as information transmission and code reliability. In this manner, similarities in mesoscale brain circuitry and input-output organization between different vertebrate groups may reflect evolutionary constraints imposed by these functional requirements, which may or may not be traceable to a common ancestor. PMID:26388716

  20. Continuous theta burst transcranial magnetic stimulation affects brain functional connectivity.

    PubMed

    Dan Cao; Yingjie Li; Ling Wei; Yingying Tang

    2016-08-01

    Prefrontal cortex (PFC) plays an important role in the emotional processing as well as in the functional brain network. Hyperactivity in the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) would be found in anxious participants. However, it is still unclear what the role of PFC played in a resting functional network. Continuous theta burst transcranial magnetic stimulation (cTBS) is an effective tool to create virtual lesions on brain regions. In this paper, we applied cTBS over right prefrontal area, and investigated the effects of cTBS on the brain activity for functional connectivity by the method of graph theory. We recorded 64-channels EEG on thirteen healthy participants in the resting condition and emotional tasks before and after 40 s of cTBS. This work focused on the effect of cTBS on cortical activities in the resting condition by calculating the coherence between EEG channels and building functional networks before and after cTBS in the delta, theta, alpha and beta bands. Results revealed that 1) The functional connectivity after cTBS was significantly increased compared with that before cTBS in delta, theta, alpha and beta bands in the resting condition; 2) The efficiency-cost reached the maximum before and after cTBS both with the cost about 0.3 in the bands above, which meant that the information transmission of functional brain network with this cost was highly efficient; 3) the clustering coefficient and path length after cTBS was significantly increased in delta, theta and beta bands. In conclusion, cTBS over PFC indeed enhanced the functional connectivity in the resting condition. In addition, the information transmission in the resting brain network was highly efficient with the cost about 0.3.

  1. Effects of nutrients on brain function.

    PubMed

    Maher, T J

    2000-01-01

    While many of the above examples support a role of these dietary components in modifying the synthesis, storage, release and actions of various neurotransmitter molecules in the central nervous system, most of the responses to eating everyday foods are expected to produce subtle changes in physiological and/or behavioral parameters. However, the observed subtle changes may have significant consequences when present in individuals with altered homeostasis as might be present in various disease states or certain environmental situations (e.g. depression, PMS, stress). Studies in the future should investigate the effects of various diets, e.g., vegetarian, macrobiotic, traditional Eastern, etc. on physiological and psychological functioning. Care should be taken to differentiate between the responses of subgroups of subjects, e.g. male vs. female, old vs. young, and lean vs. obese, as some differences in the rate of neurotransmitter synthesis and receptor dynamics have been reported in some studies. Chronic consumption of these diets may lead to long-term alterations in the neurotransmitter systems' dynamics, or as is often the situation with long-term pharmacological treatments, may result in adaptive changes to minimize the acute effects of such treatments. To date, no such studies have been performed that have systematically addressed many of these issues. Future studies will require careful design so as to enhance the chances of detecting such alterations in function. However, the most significant alterations in function occur when a dietary component is administered in a purified form, separate from the normal diet. In this case the compound should be treated more like a pharmacological agent than a nutrient since adverse (i.e. antinutritive) effects may result. The most difficult studies however will use everyday foods with the aim of detecting changes based on the underlying biochemical changes.

  2. Diverse Functions of Retinoic Acid in Brain Vascular Development

    PubMed Central

    Bonney, Stephanie; Harrison-Uy, Susan; Mishra, Swati; MacPherson, Amber M.; Choe, Youngshik; Li, Dan; Jaminet, Shou-Ching; Fruttiger, Marcus; Pleasure, Samuel J.

    2016-01-01

    As neural structures grow in size and increase metabolic demand, the CNS vasculature undergoes extensive growth, remodeling, and maturation. Signals from neural tissue act on endothelial cells to stimulate blood vessel ingression, vessel patterning, and acquisition of mature brain vascular traits, most notably the blood–brain barrier. Using mouse genetic and in vitro approaches, we identified retinoic acid (RA) as an important regulator of brain vascular development via non-cell-autonomous and cell-autonomous regulation of endothelial WNT signaling. Our analysis of globally RA-deficient embryos (Rdh10 mutants) points to an important, non-cell-autonomous function for RA in the development of the vasculature in the neocortex. We demonstrate that Rdh10 mutants have severe defects in cerebrovascular development and that this phenotype correlates with near absence of endothelial WNT signaling, specifically in the cerebrovasculature, and substantially elevated expression of WNT inhibitors in the neocortex. We show that RA can suppress the expression of WNT inhibitors in neocortical progenitors. Analysis of vasculature in non-neocortical brain regions suggested that RA may have a separate, cell-autonomous function in brain endothelial cells to inhibit WNT signaling. Using both gain and loss of RA signaling approaches, we show that RA signaling in brain endothelial cells can inhibit WNT-β-catenin transcriptional activity and that this is required to moderate the expression of WNT target Sox17. From this, a model emerges in which RA acts upstream of the WNT pathway via non-cell-autonomous and cell-autonomous mechanisms to ensure the formation of an adequate and stable brain vascular plexus. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Work presented here provides novel insight into important yet little understood aspects of brain vascular development, implicating for the first time a factor upstream of endothelial WNT signaling. We show that RA is permissive for cerebrovascular growth via

  3. The role of sleep in emotional brain function.

    PubMed

    Goldstein, Andrea N; Walker, Matthew P

    2014-01-01

    Rapidly emerging evidence continues to describe an intimate and causal relationship between sleep and emotional brain function. These findings are mirrored by long-standing clinical observations demonstrating that nearly all mood and anxiety disorders co-occur with one or more sleep abnormalities. This review aims to (a) provide a synthesis of recent findings describing the emotional brain and behavioral benefits triggered by sleep, and conversely, the detrimental impairments following a lack of sleep; (b) outline a proposed framework in which sleep, and specifically rapid-eye movement (REM) sleep, supports a process of affective brain homeostasis, optimally preparing the organism for next-day social and emotional functioning; and (c) describe how this hypothesized framework can explain the prevalent relationships between sleep and psychiatric disorders, with a particular focus on posttraumatic stress disorder and major depression.

  4. The Role of Sleep in Emotional Brain Function

    PubMed Central

    Goldstein, Andrea N.; Walker, Matthew P.

    2014-01-01

    Rapidly emerging evidence continues to describe an intimate and causal relationship between sleep and emotional brain function. These findings are mirrored by longstanding clinical observations demonstrating that nearly all mood and anxiety disorders co-occur with one or more sleep abnormalities. This review aims to (1) provide a synthesis of recent findings describing the emotional brain and behavioral benefits triggered by sleep, and conversely, the detrimental impairments following a lack of sleep, (2) outline a proposed framework in which sleep, and specifically rapid-eye movement (REM) sleep, supports a process of affective brain homeostasis, optimally preparing the organism for next-day social and emotional functioning, and (3) describe how this hypothesized framework can explain the prevalent relationships between sleep and psychiatric disorders, with a particular focus on post-traumatic stress disorder and major depression. PMID:24499013

  5. A cellular perspective on brain energy metabolism and functional imaging.

    PubMed

    Magistretti, Pierre J; Allaman, Igor

    2015-05-20

    The energy demands of the brain are high: they account for at least 20% of the body's energy consumption. Evolutionary studies indicate that the emergence of higher cognitive functions in humans is associated with an increased glucose utilization and expression of energy metabolism genes. Functional brain imaging techniques such as fMRI and PET, which are widely used in human neuroscience studies, detect signals that monitor energy delivery and use in register with neuronal activity. Recent technological advances in metabolic studies with cellular resolution have afforded decisive insights into the understanding of the cellular and molecular bases of the coupling between neuronal activity and energy metabolism and point at a key role of neuron-astrocyte metabolic interactions. This article reviews some of the most salient features emerging from recent studies and aims at providing an integration of brain energy metabolism across resolution scales. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Structural and functional clusters of complex brain networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zemanová, Lucia; Zhou, Changsong; Kurths, Jürgen

    2006-12-01

    Recent research using the complex network approach has revealed a rich and complicated network topology in the cortical connectivity of mammalian brains. It is of importance to understand the implications of such complex network structures in the functional organization of the brain activities. Here we study this problem from the viewpoint of dynamical complex networks. We investigate synchronization dynamics on the corticocortical network of the cat by modeling each node (cortical area) of the network with a sub-network of interacting excitable neurons. We find that the network displays clustered synchronization behavior, and the dynamical clusters coincide with the topological community structures observed in the anatomical network. Our results provide insights into the relationship between the global organization and the functional specialization of the brain cortex.

  7. Evaluation of traumatic brain injury: brain potentials in diagnosis, function, and prognosis.

    PubMed

    Duncan, Connie C; Summers, Angela C; Perla, Elizabeth J; Coburn, Kerry L; Mirsky, Allan F

    2011-10-01

    The focus of this review is an analysis of the use of event-related brain potential (ERP) abnormalities as indices of functional pathophysiology in survivors of traumatic brain injury (TBI). TBI may be the most prevalent but least understood neurological disorder in both civilian and military populations. In the military, thousands of new brain injuries occur yearly; this lends considerable urgency to the use of highly sensitive ERP tools to illuminate brain changes and to address remediation issues. We review the processes thought to be indexed by the cognitive components of the ERP and outline the rationale for applying ERPs to evaluate deficits after TBI. Studies in which ERPs were used to clarify the nature of cognitive complaints of TBI survivors are reviewed, emphasizing impairment in attention, information processing, and cognitive control. Also highlighted is research on the application of ERPs to predict emergence from coma and eventual outcome. We describe primary blast injury, the leading cause of TBI for active duty military personnel in present day warfare. The review concludes with a description of an ongoing investigation of mild TBI, aimed at using indices of brain structure and function to predict the course of posttraumatic stress disorder. An additional goal of this ongoing investigation is to characterize the structural and functional sequelae of blast injury.

  8. Disrupted functional brain connectome in unilateral sudden sensorineural hearing loss.

    PubMed

    Xu, Haibo; Fan, Wenliang; Zhao, Xueyan; Li, Jing; Zhang, Wenjuan; Lei, Ping; Liu, Yuan; Wang, Haha; Cheng, Huamao; Shi, Hong

    2016-05-01

    Sudden sensorineural hearing loss (SSNHL) is generally defined as sensorineural hearing loss of 30 dB or greater over at least three contiguous audiometric frequencies and within a three-day period. This hearing loss is usually unilateral and can be associated with tinnitus and vertigo. The pathogenesis of unilateral sudden sensorineural hearing loss is still unknown, and the alterations in the functional connectivity are suspected to involve one possible pathogenesis. Despite scarce findings with respect to alterations in brain functional networks in unilateral sudden sensorineural hearing loss, the alterations of the whole brain functional connectome and whether these alterations were already in existence in the acute period remains unknown. The aim of this study was to investigate the alterations of brain functional connectome in two large samples of unilateral sudden sensorineural hearing loss patients and to investigate the correlation between unilateral sudden sensorineural hearing loss characteristics and changes in the functional network properties. Pure tone audiometry was performed to assess hearing ability. Abnormal changes in the peripheral auditory system were examined using conventional magnetic resonance imaging. The graph theoretical network analysis method was used to detect brain connectome alterations in unilateral sudden sensorineural hearing loss. Compared with the control groups, both groups of unilateral SSNHL patients exhibited a significantly increased clustering coefficient, global efficiency, and local efficiency but a significantly decreased characteristic path length. In addition, the primary increased nodal strength (e.g., nodal betweenness, hubs) was observed in several regions primarily, including the limbic and paralimbic systems, and in the auditory network brain areas. These findings suggest that the alteration of network organization already exists in unilateral sudden sensorineural hearing loss patients within the acute period

  9. Does sleep restore the topology of functional brain networks?

    PubMed

    Koenis, Maria M G; Romeijn, Nico; Piantoni, Giovanni; Verweij, Ilse; Van der Werf, Ysbrand D; Van Someren, Eus J W; Stam, Cornelis J

    2013-02-01

    Previous studies have shown that healthy anatomical as well as functional brain networks have small-world properties and become less optimal with brain disease. During sleep, the functional brain network becomes more small-world-like. Here we test the hypothesis that the functional brain network during wakefulness becomes less optimal after sleep deprivation (SD). Electroencephalography (EEG) was recorded five times a day after a night of SD and after a night of normal sleep in eight young healthy subjects, both during eyes-closed and eyes-open resting state. Overall synchronization was determined with the synchronization likelihood (SL) and the phase lag index (PLI). From these coupling strength matrices the normalized clustering coefficient C (a measurement of local clustering) and path length L (a measurement of global integration) were computed. Both measures were normalized by dividing them by their corresponding C-s and L-s values of random control networks. SD reduced alpha band C/C-s and L/L-s and theta band C/C-s during eyes-closed resting state. In contrast, SD increased gamma-band C/C-s and L/L-s during eyes-open resting state. Functional relevance of these changes in network properties was suggested by their association with sleep deprivation-induced performance deficits on a sustained attention simple reaction time task. The findings indicate that SD results in a more random network of alpha-coupling and a more ordered network of gamma-coupling. The present study shows that SD induces frequency-specific changes in the functional network topology of the brain, supporting the idea that sleep plays a role in the maintenance of an optimal functional network.

  10. Altered Resting Brain Function and Structure in Professional Badminton Players

    PubMed Central

    Di, Xin; Zhu, Senhua; Wang, Pin; Ye, Zhuoer; Zhou, Ke; Zhuo, Yan

    2012-01-01

    Abstract Neuroimaging studies of professional athletic or musical training have demonstrated considerable practice-dependent plasticity in various brain structures, which may reflect distinct training demands. In the present study, structural and functional brain alterations were examined in professional badminton players and compared with healthy controls using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and resting-state functional MRI. Gray matter concentration (GMC) was assessed using voxel-based morphometry (VBM), and resting-brain functions were measured by amplitude of low-frequency fluctuation (ALFF) and seed-based functional connectivity. Results showed that the athlete group had greater GMC and ALFF in the right and medial cerebellar regions, respectively. The athlete group also demonstrated smaller ALFF in the left superior parietal lobule and altered functional connectivity between the left superior parietal and frontal regions. These findings indicate that badminton expertise is associated with not only plastic structural changes in terms of enlarged gray matter density in the cerebellum, but also functional alterations in fronto-parietal connectivity. Such structural and functional alterations may reflect specific experiences of badminton training and practice, including high-capacity visuo-spatial processing and hand-eye coordination in addition to refined motor skills. PMID:22840241

  11. Altered resting brain function and structure in professional badminton players.

    PubMed

    Di, Xin; Zhu, Senhua; Jin, Hua; Wang, Pin; Ye, Zhuoer; Zhou, Ke; Zhuo, Yan; Rao, Hengyi

    2012-01-01

    Neuroimaging studies of professional athletic or musical training have demonstrated considerable practice-dependent plasticity in various brain structures, which may reflect distinct training demands. In the present study, structural and functional brain alterations were examined in professional badminton players and compared with healthy controls using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and resting-state functional MRI. Gray matter concentration (GMC) was assessed using voxel-based morphometry (VBM), and resting-brain functions were measured by amplitude of low-frequency fluctuation (ALFF) and seed-based functional connectivity. Results showed that the athlete group had greater GMC and ALFF in the right and medial cerebellar regions, respectively. The athlete group also demonstrated smaller ALFF in the left superior parietal lobule and altered functional connectivity between the left superior parietal and frontal regions. These findings indicate that badminton expertise is associated with not only plastic structural changes in terms of enlarged gray matter density in the cerebellum, but also functional alterations in fronto-parietal connectivity. Such structural and functional alterations may reflect specific experiences of badminton training and practice, including high-capacity visuo-spatial processing and hand-eye coordination in addition to refined motor skills.

  12. Aberrant functional brain connectome in people with antisocial personality disorder

    PubMed Central

    Tang, Yan; Long, Jun; Wang, Wei; Liao, Jian; Xie, Hua; Zhao, Guihu; Zhang, Hao

    2016-01-01

    Antisocial personality disorder (ASPD) is characterised by a disregard for social obligations and callous unconcern for the feelings of others. Studies have demonstrated that ASPD is associated with abnormalities in brain regions and aberrant functional connectivity. In this paper, topological organisation was examined in resting-state fMRI data obtained from 32 ASPD patients and 32 non-ASPD controls. The frequency-dependent functional networks were constructed using wavelet-based correlations over 90 brain regions. The topology of the functional networks of ASPD subjects was analysed via graph theoretical analysis. Furthermore, the abnormal functional connectivity was determined with a network-based statistic (NBS) approach. Our results revealed that, compared with the controls, the ASPD patients exhibited altered topological configuration of the functional connectome in the frequency interval of 0.016–0.031 Hz, as indicated by the increased clustering coefficient and decreased betweenness centrality in the medial superior frontal gyrus, precentral gyrus, Rolandic operculum, superior parietal gyrus, angular gyrus, and middle temporal pole. In addition, the ASPD patients showed increased functional connectivity mainly located in the default-mode network. The present study reveals an aberrant topological organisation of the functional brain network in individuals with ASPD. Our findings provide novel insight into the neuropathological mechanisms of ASPD. PMID:27257047

  13. Brain structure and function correlates of cognitive subtypes in schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Geisler, Daniel; Walton, Esther; Naylor, Melissa; Roessner, Veit; Lim, Kelvin O; Charles Schulz, S; Gollub, Randy L; Calhoun, Vince D; Sponheim, Scott R; Ehrlich, Stefan

    2015-10-30

    Stable neuropsychological deficits may provide a reliable basis for identifying etiological subtypes of schizophrenia. The aim of this study was to identify clusters of individuals with schizophrenia based on dimensions of neuropsychological performance, and to characterize their neural correlates. We acquired neuropsychological data as well as structural and functional magnetic resonance imaging from 129 patients with schizophrenia and 165 healthy controls. We derived eight cognitive dimensions and subsequently applied a cluster analysis to identify possible schizophrenia subtypes. Analyses suggested the following four cognitive clusters of schizophrenia: (1) Diminished Verbal Fluency, (2) Diminished Verbal Memory and Poor Motor Control, (3) Diminished Face Memory and Slowed Processing, and (4) Diminished Intellectual Function. The clusters were characterized by a specific pattern of structural brain changes in areas such as Wernicke's area, lingual gyrus and occipital face area, and hippocampus as well as differences in working memory-elicited neural activity in several fronto-parietal brain regions. Separable measures of cognitive function appear to provide a method for deriving cognitive subtypes meaningfully related to brain structure and function. Because the present study identified brain-based neural correlates of the cognitive clusters, the proposed groups of individuals with schizophrenia have some external validity. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Psychosocial Stress and Brain Function in Adolescent Psychopathology.

    PubMed

    Quinlan, Erin Burke; Cattrell, Anna; Jia, Tianye; Artiges, Eric; Banaschewski, Tobias; Barker, Gareth; Bokde, Arun L W; Bromberg, Uli; Büchel, Christian; Brühl, Rüdiger; Conrod, Patricia J; Desrivieres, Sylvane; Flor, Herta; Frouin, Vincent; Gallinat, Jürgen; Garavan, Hugh; Gowland, Penny; Heinz, Andreas; Martinot, Jean-Luc; Paillère Martinot, Marie-Laure; Nees, Frauke; Papadopoulos-Orfanos, Dimitri; Paus, Tomáš; Poustka, Luise; Smolka, Michael N; Vetter, Nora C; Walter, Henrik; Whelan, Robert; Glennon, Jeffrey C; Buitelaar, Jan K; Happé, Francesca; Loth, Eva; Barker, Edward D; Schumann, Gunter

    2017-08-01

    The authors sought to explore how conduct, hyperactivity/inattention, and emotional symptoms are associated with neural reactivity to social-emotional stimuli, and the extent to which psychosocial stress modulates these relationships. Participants were community adolescents recruited as part of the European IMAGEN study. Bilateral amygdala regions of interest were used to assess the relationship between the three symptom domains and functional MRI neural reactivity during passive viewing of dynamic angry and neutral facial expressions. Exploratory functional connectivity and whole brain multiple regression approaches were used to analyze how the symptoms and psychosocial stress relate to other brain regions. In response to the social-emotional stimuli, adolescents with high levels of conduct or hyperactivity/inattention symptoms who had also experienced a greater number of stressful life events showed hyperactivity of the amygdala and several regions across the brain. This effect was not observed with emotional symptoms. A cluster in the midcingulate was found to be common to both conduct problems and hyperactivity symptoms. Exploratory functional connectivity analyses suggested that amygdala-precuneus connectivity is associated with hyperactivity/inattention symptoms. The results link hyperactive amygdala responses and regions critical for top-down emotional processing with high levels of psychosocial stress in individuals with greater conduct and hyperactivity/inattention symptoms. This work highlights the importance of studying how psychosocial stress affects functional brain responses to social-emotional stimuli, particularly in adolescents with externalizing symptoms.

  15. Structural and Functional Plasticity in the Maternal Brain Circuitry

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pereira, Mariana

    2016-01-01

    Parenting recruits a distributed network of brain structures (and neuromodulators) that coordinates caregiving responses attuned to the young's affect, needs, and developmental stage. Many of these structures and connections undergo significant structural and functional plasticity, mediated by the interplay between maternal hormones and social…

  16. Variability in functional brain networks predicts expertise during action observation.

    PubMed

    Amoruso, Lucía; Ibáñez, Agustín; Fonseca, Bruno; Gadea, Sebastián; Sedeño, Lucas; Sigman, Mariano; García, Adolfo M; Fraiman, Ricardo; Fraiman, Daniel

    2017-02-01

    Observing an action performed by another individual activates, in the observer, similar circuits as those involved in the actual execution of that action. This activation is modulated by prior experience; indeed, sustained training in a particular motor domain leads to structural and functional changes in critical brain areas. Here, we capitalized on a novel graph-theory approach to electroencephalographic data (Fraiman et al., 2016) to test whether variability in functional brain networks implicated in Tango observation can discriminate between groups differing in their level of expertise. We found that experts and beginners significantly differed in the functional organization of task-relevant networks. Specifically, networks in expert Tango dancers exhibited less variability and a more robust functional architecture. Notably, these expertise-dependent effects were captured within networks derived from electrophysiological brain activity recorded in a very short time window (2s). In brief, variability in the organization of task-related networks seems to be a highly sensitive indicator of long-lasting training effects. This finding opens new methodological and theoretical windows to explore the impact of domain-specific expertise on brain plasticity, while highlighting variability as a fruitful measure in neuroimaging research. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Assessment of Emotional Functioning in Brain-Impaired Individuals.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nelson, Linda D.; Cicchetti, Domenic V.

    1995-01-01

    Two basic models are presented of emotional functioning as it is commonly considered relative to brain damage. Methodological concerns in the literature are reviewed, and issues of measurement are highlighted to demonstrate the importance of empirically defining the prevalence of emotional effects. (SLD)

  18. Functional split brain in a driving/listening paradigm.

    PubMed

    Sasai, Shuntaro; Boly, Melanie; Mensen, Armand; Tononi, Giulio

    2016-12-13

    We often engage in two concurrent but unrelated activities, such as driving on a quiet road while listening to the radio. When we do so, does our brain split into functionally distinct entities? To address this question, we imaged brain activity with fMRI in experienced drivers engaged in a driving simulator while listening either to global positioning system instructions (integrated task) or to a radio show (split task). We found that, compared with the integrated task, the split task was characterized by reduced multivariate functional connectivity between the driving and listening networks. Furthermore, the integrated information content of the two networks, predicting their joint dynamics above and beyond their independent dynamics, was high in the integrated task and zero in the split task. Finally, individual subjects' ability to switch between high and low information integration predicted their driving performance across integrated and split tasks. This study raises the possibility that under certain conditions of daily life, a single brain may support two independent functional streams, a "functional split brain" similar to what is observed in patients with an anatomical split.

  19. Predicting functional brain ROIs via fiber shape models.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Tuo; Guo, Lei; Li, Kaiming; Zhu, Dajing; Cui, Guangbin; Liu, Tianming

    2011-01-01

    Study of structural and functional connectivities of the human brain has received significant interest and effort recently. A fundamental question arises when attempting to measure the structural and/or functional connectivities of specific brain networks: how to best identify possible Regions of Interests (ROIs)? In this paper, we present a novel ROI prediction framework that localizes ROIs in individual brains based on learned fiber shape models from multimodal task-based fMRI and diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) data. In the training stage, ROIs are identified as activation peaks in task-based fMRI data. Then, shape models of white matter fibers emanating from these functional ROIs are learned. In addition, ROIs' location distribution model is learned to be used as an anatomical constraint. In the prediction stage, functional ROIs are predicted in individual brains based on DTI data. The ROI prediction is formulated and solved as an energy minimization problem, in which the two learned models are used as energy terms. Our experiment results show that the average ROI prediction error is 3.45 mm, in comparison with the benchmark data provided by working memory task-based fMRI. Promising results were also obtained on the ADNI-2 longitudinal DTI dataset.

  20. "Hotheaded": the role OF TRPV1 in brain functions.

    PubMed

    Martins, D; Tavares, I; Morgado, C

    2014-10-01

    The TRPV1 (vanilloid 1) channel is best known for its role in sensory transmission in the nociceptive neurons of the peripheral nervous system. Although first studied in the dorsal root ganglia as the receptor for capsaicin, TRPV1 has been recently recognized to have a broader distribution in the central nervous system, where it is likely to constitute an atypical neurotransmission system involved in several functions through modulation of both neuronal and glial activities. The endovanilloid-activated brain TRPV1 channels seem to be involved in somatosensory, motor and visceral functions. Recent studies suggested that TRPV1 channels also account for more complex functions, as addiction, anxiety, mood and cognition/learning. However, more studies are needed before the relevance of TRPV1 in brain activity can be clearly stated. This review highlights the increasing importance of TRPV1 as a regulator of brain function and discusses possible bases for the future development of new therapeutic approaches that by targeting brain TRPV1 receptors might be used for the treatment of several neurological disorders.

  1. Structural and Functional Plasticity in the Maternal Brain Circuitry

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pereira, Mariana

    2016-01-01

    Parenting recruits a distributed network of brain structures (and neuromodulators) that coordinates caregiving responses attuned to the young's affect, needs, and developmental stage. Many of these structures and connections undergo significant structural and functional plasticity, mediated by the interplay between maternal hormones and social…

  2. The nicotinic cholinergic system function in the human brain.

    PubMed

    Nees, Frauke

    2015-09-01

    Research on the nicotinic cholinergic system function in the brain was previously mainly derived from animal studies, yet, research in humans is growing. Up to date, findings allow significant advances on the understanding of nicotinic cholinergic effects on human cognition, emotion and behavior using a range of functional brain imaging approaches such as pharmacological functional magnetic resonance imaging or positron emission tomography. Studies provided insights across various mechanistic psychological domains using different tasks as well as at rest in both healthy individuals and patient populations, with so far partly mixed results reporting both enhancements and decrements of neural activity related to the nicotinic cholinergic system. Moreover, studies on the relation between brain structure and the nicotinic cholinergic system add important information in this context. The present review summarizes the current status of human brain imaging studies and presents the findings within a theoretical and clinical perspective as they may be useful not only for an advancement of the understanding of basic nicotinic cholinergic-related mechanisms, but also for the development and integration of psychological and pharmacological treatment approaches. Patterns of functional neuroanatomy and neural circuitry across various cognitive and emotional domains may be used as neuropsychological markers of mental disorders such as addiction, Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson disease or schizophrenia, where nicotinic cholinergic system changes are characteristic. This article is part of the Special Issue entitled 'The Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor: From Molecular Biology to Cognition'. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Functional craniology and brain evolution: from paleontology to biomedicine.

    PubMed

    Bruner, Emiliano; de la Cuétara, José Manuel; Masters, Michael; Amano, Hideki; Ogihara, Naomichi

    2014-01-01

    Anatomical systems are organized through a network of structural and functional relationships among their elements. This network of relationships is the result of evolution, it represents the actual target of selection, and it generates the set of rules orienting and constraining the morphogenetic processes. Understanding the relationship among cranial and cerebral components is necessary to investigate the factors that have influenced and characterized our neuroanatomy, and possible drawbacks associated with the evolution of large brains. The study of the spatial relationships between skull and brain in the human genus has direct relevance in cranial surgery. Geometrical modeling can provide functional perspectives in evolution and brain physiology, like in simulations to investigate metabolic heat production and dissipation in the endocranial form. Analysis of the evolutionary constraints between facial and neural blocks can provide new information on visual impairment. The study of brain form variation in fossil humans can supply a different perspective for interpreting the processes behind neurodegeneration and Alzheimer's disease. Following these examples, it is apparent that paleontology and biomedicine can exchange relevant information and contribute at the same time to the development of robust evolutionary hypotheses on brain evolution, while offering more comprehensive biological perspectives with regard to the interpretation of pathological processes.

  4. Functional craniology and brain evolution: from paleontology to biomedicine

    PubMed Central

    Bruner, Emiliano; de la Cuétara, José Manuel; Masters, Michael; Amano, Hideki; Ogihara, Naomichi

    2014-01-01

    Anatomical systems are organized through a network of structural and functional relationships among their elements. This network of relationships is the result of evolution, it represents the actual target of selection, and it generates the set of rules orienting and constraining the morphogenetic processes. Understanding the relationship among cranial and cerebral components is necessary to investigate the factors that have influenced and characterized our neuroanatomy, and possible drawbacks associated with the evolution of large brains. The study of the spatial relationships between skull and brain in the human genus has direct relevance in cranial surgery. Geometrical modeling can provide functional perspectives in evolution and brain physiology, like in simulations to investigate metabolic heat production and dissipation in the endocranial form. Analysis of the evolutionary constraints between facial and neural blocks can provide new information on visual impairment. The study of brain form variation in fossil humans can supply a different perspective for interpreting the processes behind neurodegeneration and Alzheimer’s disease. Following these examples, it is apparent that paleontology and biomedicine can exchange relevant information and contribute at the same time to the development of robust evolutionary hypotheses on brain evolution, while offering more comprehensive biological perspectives with regard to the interpretation of pathological processes. PMID:24765064

  5. Astrocyte functions in the copper homeostasis of the brain.

    PubMed

    Scheiber, Ivo F; Dringen, Ralf

    2013-04-01

    Copper is an essential element that is required for a variety of important cellular functions. Since not only copper deficiency but also excess of copper can seriously affect cellular functions, the cellular copper metabolism is tightly regulated. In brain, astrocytes appear to play a pivotal role in the copper metabolism. With their strategically important localization between capillary endothelial cells and neuronal structures they are ideally positioned to transport copper from the blood-brain barrier to parenchymal brain cells. Accordingly, astrocytes have the capacity to efficiently take up, store and to export copper. Cultured astrocytes appear to be remarkably resistant against copper-induced toxicity. However, copper exposure can lead to profound alterations in the metabolism of these cells. This article will summarize the current knowledge on the copper metabolism of astrocytes, will describe copper-induced alterations in the glucose and glutathione metabolism of astrocytes and will address the potential role of astrocytes in the copper metabolism of the brain in diseases that have been connected with disturbances in brain copper homeostasis.

  6. Memory Function Before and After Whole Brain Radiotherapy in Patients With and Without Brain Metastases

    SciTech Connect

    Welzel, Grit Fleckenstein, Katharina; Schaefer, Joerg; Hermann, Brigitte; Kraus-Tiefenbacher, Uta; Mai, Sabine K.; Wenz, Frederik

    2008-12-01

    Purpose: To prospectively compare the effect of prophylactic and therapeutic whole brain radiotherapy (WBRT) on memory function in patients with and without brain metastases. Methods and Materials: Adult patients with and without brain metastases (n = 44) were prospectively evaluated with serial cognitive testing, before RT (T0), after starting RT (T1), at the end of RT (T2), and 6-8 weeks (T3) after RT completion. Data were obtained from small-cell lung cancer patients treated with prophylactic cranial irradiation, patients with brain metastases treated with therapeutic cranial irradiation (TCI), and breast cancer patients treated with RT to the breast. Results: Before therapy, prophylactic cranial irradiation patients performed worse than TCI patients or than controls on most test scores. During and after WBRT, verbal memory function was influenced by pretreatment cognitive status (p < 0.001) and to a lesser extent by WBRT. Acute (T1) radiation effects on verbal memory function were only observed in TCI patients (p = 0.031). Subacute (T3) radiation effects on verbal memory function were observed in both TCI and prophylactic cranial irradiation patients (p = 0.006). These effects were more pronounced in patients with above-average performance at baseline. Visual memory and attention were not influenced by WBRT. Conclusions: The results of our study have shown that WBRT causes cognitive dysfunction immediately after the beginning of RT in patients with brain metastases only. At 6-8 weeks after the end of WBRT, cognitive dysfunction was seen in patients with and without brain metastases. Because cognitive dysfunction after WBRT is restricted to verbal memory, patients should not avoid WBRT because of a fear of neurocognitive side effects.

  7. Pregnancy reduces brain sigma receptor function

    PubMed Central

    Bergeron, Richard; de Montigny, Claude; Debonnel, Guy

    1999-01-01

    Sigma (σ) receptors have recently been cloned, though their endogenous ligand(s) remain unidentified. However, some neuroactive steroids, such as progesterone, have a high affinity for these receptors. Some σ ligands, such as DTG, (+)-pentazocine and DHEA, act as σ ‘agonists' by potentiating the neuronal response to NMDA. Others, such as haloperidol, NE-100 and progesterone, act as σ ‘antagonists' by reversing the potentiations induced by σ ‘agonists'.We compared the effects of σ ‘agonists' in four series of female rats: in controls, at day 18 of pregnancy, at day 5 post-partum, and in ovariectomized rats following a 3-week treatment with a high dose of progesterone.In pregnant rats and following a 3-week treatment with progesterone, 10 fold higher doses of DTG, (+)-pentazocine and DHEA were required to elicit a selective potentiation of the NMDA response comparable to that obtained in control females. Conversely, at day 5 post-partum and following the 3-week treatment with a progesterone and after a 5-day washout, the potentiation of the NMDA response induced by the σ ‘agonist' DTG was greater than in control females.The present data suggest that endogenous progesterone acts as an ‘antagonist' at σ receptors. The resulting changes in the function of σ receptors during pregnancy and post-partum may be implicated in emotional phenomena occurring during these periods. PMID:10482906

  8. Beyond genotype: serotonin transporter epigenetic modification predicts human brain function.

    PubMed

    Nikolova, Yuliya S; Koenen, Karestan C; Galea, Sandro; Wang, Chiou-Miin; Seney, Marianne L; Sibille, Etienne; Williamson, Douglas E; Hariri, Ahmad R

    2014-09-01

    We examined epigenetic regulation in regards to behaviorally and clinically relevant human brain function. Specifically, we found that increased promoter methylation of the serotonin transporter gene predicted increased threat-related amygdala reactivity and decreased mRNA expression in postmortem amygdala tissue. These patterns were independent of functional genetic variation in the same region. Furthermore, the association with amygdala reactivity was replicated in a second cohort and was robust to both sampling methods and age.

  9. Left Brain vs. Right Brain: Findings on Visual Spatial Capacities and the Functional Neurology of Giftedness

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kalbfleisch, M. Layne; Gillmarten, Charles

    2013-01-01

    As neuroimaging technologies increase their sensitivity to assess the function of the human brain and results from these studies draw the attention of educators, it becomes paramount to identify misconceptions about what these data illustrate and how these findings might be applied to educational contexts. Some of these "neuromyths" have…

  10. Left Brain vs. Right Brain: Findings on Visual Spatial Capacities and the Functional Neurology of Giftedness

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kalbfleisch, M. Layne; Gillmarten, Charles

    2013-01-01

    As neuroimaging technologies increase their sensitivity to assess the function of the human brain and results from these studies draw the attention of educators, it becomes paramount to identify misconceptions about what these data illustrate and how these findings might be applied to educational contexts. Some of these "neuromyths" have…

  11. Functional recovery after surgical resection of low grade gliomas in eloquent brain: hypothesis of brain compensation

    PubMed Central

    Duffau, H; Capelle, L; Denvil, D; Sichez, N; Gatignol, P; Lopes, M; Mitchell, M; Sichez, J; Van Effenterre, R

    2003-01-01

    Objectives: To describe functional recovery after surgical resection of low grade gliomas (LGG) in eloquent brain areas, and discuss the mechanisms of compensation. Methods: Seventy-seven right-handed patients without deficit were operated on for a LGG invading primary and/or secondary sensorimotor and/or language areas, as shown anatomically by pre-operative MRI and intraoperatively by electrical brain stimulation and cortico-subcortical mapping. Results: Tumours involved 31 supplementary motor areas, 28 insulas, 8 primary somatosensory areas, 4 primary motor areas, 4 Broca's areas, and 2 left temporal language areas. All patients had immediate post-operative deficits. Recovery occurred within 3 months in all except four cases (definitive morbidity: 5%). Ninety-two percent of the lesions were either totally or extensively resected on post-operative MRI. Conclusions: These findings suggest that spatio-temporal functional re-organisation is possible in peritumoural brain, and that the process is dynamic. The recruitment of compensatory areas with long term perilesional functional reshaping would explain why: before surgery, there is no clinical deficit despite the tumour growth in eloquent regions; immediately after surgery, the occurrence of a deficit, which could be due to the resection of invaded areas participating (but not essential) to the function; and why three months after surgery, almost complete recovery had occurred. This brain plasticity, which decreases the long term risk of surgical morbidity, may be used to extend the limits of surgery in eloquent areas. PMID:12810776

  12. Correspondence between evoked and intrinsic functional brain network configurations.

    PubMed

    Bolt, Taylor; Nomi, Jason S; Rubinov, Mikail; Uddin, Lucina Q

    2017-04-01

    Much of the literature exploring differences between intrinsic and task-evoked brain architectures has examined changes in functional connectivity patterns between specific brain regions. While informative, this approach overlooks important overall functional changes in hub organization and network topology that may provide insights about differences in integration between intrinsic and task-evoked states. Examination of changes in overall network organization, such as a change in the concentration of hub nodes or a quantitative change in network organization, is important for understanding the underlying processes that differ between intrinsic and task-evoked brain architectures. The present study used graph-theoretical techniques applied to publicly available neuroimaging data collected from a large sample of individuals (N = 202), and a within-subject design where resting-state and several task scans were collected from each participant as part of the Human Connectome Project. We demonstrate that differences between intrinsic and task-evoked brain networks are characterized by a task-general shift in high-connectivity hubs from primarily sensorimotor/auditory processing areas during the intrinsic state to executive control/salience network areas during task performance. In addition, we demonstrate that differences between intrinsic and task-evoked architectures are associated with changes in overall network organization, such as increases in network clustering, global efficiency and integration between modules. These findings offer a new perspective on the principles guiding functional brain organization by identifying unique and divergent properties of overall network organization between the resting-state and task performance. Hum Brain Mapp 38:1992-2007, 2017. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  13. Effects of exercise on brain functions in diabetic animal models.

    PubMed

    Yi, Sun Shin

    2015-05-15

    Human life span has dramatically increased over several decades, and the quality of life has been considered to be equally important. However, diabetes mellitus (DM) characterized by problems related to insulin secretion and recognition has become a serious health problem in recent years that threatens human health by causing decline in brain functions and finally leading to neurodegenerative diseases. Exercise is recognized as an effective therapy for DM without medication administration. Exercise studies using experimental animals are a suitable option to overcome this drawback, and animal studies have improved continuously according to the needs of the experimenters. Since brain health is the most significant factor in human life, it is very important to assess brain functions according to the different exercise conditions using experimental animal models. Generally, there are two types of DM; insulin-dependent type 1 DM and an insulin-independent type 2 DM (T2DM); however, the author will mostly discuss brain functions in T2DM animal models in this review. Additionally, many physiopathologic alterations are caused in the brain by DM such as increased adiposity, inflammation, hormonal dysregulation, uncontrolled hyperphagia, insulin and leptin resistance, and dysregulation of neurotransmitters and declined neurogenesis in the hippocampus and we describe how exercise corrects these alterations in animal models. The results of changes in the brain environment differ according to voluntary, involuntary running exercises and resistance exercise, and gender in the animal studies. These factors have been mentioned in this review, and this review will be a good reference for studying how exercise can be used with therapy for treating DM.

  14. Complex function in the dynamic brain. Comment on “Understanding brain networks and brain organization” by Luiz Pessoa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anderson, Michael L.

    2014-09-01

    There is much to commend in this excellent overview of the progress we've made toward-and the challenges that remain for-developing an empirical framework for neuroscience that is adequate to the dynamic complexity of the brain [17]. Here I will limit myself first to highlighting the concept of dynamic affiliation, which I take to be the central feature of the functional architecture of the brain, and second to clarifying Pessoa's brief discussion of the ontology of cognition, to be sure readers appreciate this crucial issue.

  15. Functional MRI during Hippocampal Deep Brain Stimulation in the Healthy Rat Brain

    PubMed Central

    Van Den Berge, Nathalie; Vanhove, Christian; Descamps, Benedicte; Dauwe, Ine; van Mierlo, Pieter; Vonck, Kristl; Keereman, Vincent; Raedt, Robrecht; Boon, Paul; Van Holen, Roel

    2015-01-01

    Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) is a promising treatment for neurological and psychiatric disorders. The mechanism of action and the effects of electrical fields administered to the brain by means of an electrode remain to be elucidated. The effects of DBS have been investigated primarily by electrophysiological and neurochemical studies, which lack the ability to investigate DBS-related responses on a whole-brain scale. Visualization of whole-brain effects of DBS requires functional imaging techniques such as functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI), which reflects changes in blood oxygen level dependent (BOLD) responses throughout the entire brain volume. In order to visualize BOLD responses induced by DBS, we have developed an MRI-compatible electrode and an acquisition protocol to perform DBS during BOLD fMRI. In this study, we investigate whether DBS during fMRI is valuable to study local and whole-brain effects of hippocampal DBS and to investigate the changes induced by different stimulation intensities. Seven rats were stereotactically implanted with a custom-made MRI-compatible DBS-electrode in the right hippocampus. High frequency Poisson distributed stimulation was applied using a block-design paradigm. Data were processed by means of Independent Component Analysis. Clusters were considered significant when p-values were <0.05 after correction for multiple comparisons. Our data indicate that real-time hippocampal DBS evokes a bilateral BOLD response in hippocampal and other mesolimbic structures, depending on the applied stimulation intensity. We conclude that simultaneous DBS and fMRI can be used to detect local and whole-brain responses to circuit activation with different stimulation intensities, making this technique potentially powerful for exploration of cerebral changes in response to DBS for both preclinical and clinical DBS. PMID:26193653

  16. Tesmilifene modifies brain endothelial functions and opens the blood-brain/blood-glioma barrier.

    PubMed

    Walter, Fruzsina R; Veszelka, Szilvia; Pásztói, Mária; Péterfi, Zoltán A; Tóth, András; Rákhely, Gábor; Cervenak, László; Ábrahám, Csongor S; Deli, Mária A

    2015-09-01

    Tesmilifene, a tamoxifen analog with antihistamine action, has chemopotentiating properties in experimental and clinical cancer studies. In our previous works, tesmilifene increased the permeability of the blood-brain barrier (BBB) in animal and culture models. Our aim was to investigate the effects of tesmilifene on brain microvessel permeability in the rat RG2 glioma model and to reveal its mode of action in brain endothelial cells. Tesmilifene significantly increased fluorescein extravasation in the glioma. Short-term treatment with tesmilifene reduced the resistance and increased the permeability for marker molecules in a rat triple co-culture BBB model. Tesmilifene also affected the barrier integrity in brain endothelial cells co-cultured with RG2 glioblastoma cells. Tesmilifene inhibited the activity of P-glycoprotein and multidrug resistance-associated protein-1 efflux pumps and down-regulated the mRNA expression of tight junction proteins, efflux pumps, solute carriers, and metabolic enzymes important for BBB functions. Among the possible signaling pathways that regulate BBB permeability, tesmilifene activated the early nuclear translocation of NFκB. The MAPK/ERK and PI3K/Akt kinase pathways were also involved. We demonstrate for the first time that tesmilifene increases permeability marker molecule extravasation in glioma and inhibits efflux pump activity in brain endothelial cells, which may have therapeutic relevance. Tesmilifene, a chemopotentiator in experimental and clinical cancer studies increases vascular permeability in RG2 glioma in rats and permeability for marker molecules in a culture model of the blood-brain barrier. Tesmilifene inhibits the activity of efflux pumps and down-regulates the mRNA expression of tight junction proteins, transporters, and metabolic enzymes important for the blood-brain barrier functions, which may have therapeutic relevance.

  17. Suicidal brains: a review of functional and structural brain studies in association with suicidal behaviour.

    PubMed

    van Heeringen, C; Bijttebier, S; Godfrin, K

    2011-01-01

    Evidence of an association between a vulnerability to suicidal behaviour and neurobiological abnormalities is accumulating. Post-mortem studies have demonstrated structural and biochemical changes in the brains of suicide victims. More recently, imaging techniques have become available to study changes in the brain in vivo. This systematic review of comparative imaging studies of suicidal brains shows that changes in the structure and functions of the brain in association with suicidal behaviour are mainly found in the orbitofrontal and dorsolateral parts of the prefrontal cortex. Correlational studies suggest that these changes relate to neuropsychological disturbances in decision-making, problem solving and fluency, respectively. As a consequence, the findings from these studies suggest that suicidal behaviour is associated with (1) a particular sensitivity to social disapproval (2) choosing options with high immediate reward and (3) a reduced ability to generate positive future events. Further study is needed to elaborate these findings and to investigate to what extent changes in the structure and function of suicidal brains are amenable to psychological and/or biological interventions. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Cross-hemispheric functional connectivity in the human fetal brain

    PubMed Central

    Thomason, ME; Dassanayake, MT; Shen, S; Katkuri, Y; Alexis, M; Anderson, AL; Yeo, L; Mody, S; Hernandez-Andrade, E; Hassan, SS; Studholme, C; Jeong, JW; Romero, R

    2013-01-01

    Compelling evidence indicates that psychiatric and developmental disorders are generally caused by disruptions in the functional connectivity (FC) of brain networks. Events occurring during development, and in particular during fetal life, have been implicated in the genesis of such disorders. However, the developmental timetable for the emergence of neural FC during human fetal life is unknown. We present the results of resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging performed in 25 healthy human fetuses in the second and third trimesters of pregnancy (24 to 38 weeks of gestation). We report the presence of bilateral fetal brain FC and regional and age-related variation in FC. Significant bilateral connectivity was evident in half of the 42 areas tested, and the strength of FC between homologous cortical brain regions increased with advancing gestational age. We also observed medial to lateral gradients in fetal functional brain connectivity. These findings improve understanding of human fetal central nervous system development and provide a basis for examining the role of insults during fetal life in the subsequent development of disorders in neural FC. PMID:23427244

  19. Impact of fatty acids on brain circulation, structure and function.

    PubMed

    Haast, Roy A M; Kiliaan, Amanda J

    2015-01-01

    The use of dietary intervention has evolved into a promising approach to prevent the onset and progression of brain diseases. The positive relationship between intake of omega-3 long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (ω3-LCPUFAs) and decreased onset of disease- and aging-related deterioration of brain health is increasingly endorsed across epidemiological and diet-interventional studies. Promising results are found regarding to the protection of proper brain circulation, structure and functionality in healthy and diseased humans and animal models. These include enhanced cerebral blood flow (CBF), white and gray matter integrity, and improved cognitive functioning, and are possibly mediated through increased neurovascular coupling, neuroprotection and neuronal plasticity, respectively. Contrary, studies investigating diets high in saturated fats provide opposite results, which may eventually lead to irreversible damage. Studies like these are of great importance given the high incidence of obesity caused by the increased and decreased consumption of respectively saturated fats and ω3-LCPUFAs in the Western civilization. This paper will review in vivo research conducted on the effects of ω3-LCPUFAs and saturated fatty acids on integrity (circulation, structure and function) of the young, aging and diseased brain. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Neurolinguistics: Structure, Function, and Connectivity in the Bilingual Brain.

    PubMed

    Wong, Becky; Yin, Bin; O'Brien, Beth

    2016-01-01

    Advances in neuroimaging techniques and analytic methods have led to a proliferation of studies investigating the impact of bilingualism on the cognitive and brain systems in humans. Lately, these findings have attracted much interest and debate in the field, leading to a number of recent commentaries and reviews. Here, we contribute to the ongoing discussion by compiling and interpreting the plethora of findings that relate to the structural, functional, and connective changes in the brain that ensue from bilingualism. In doing so, we integrate theoretical models and empirical findings from linguistics, cognitive/developmental psychology, and neuroscience to examine the following issues: (1) whether the language neural network is different for first (dominant) versus second (nondominant) language processing; (2) the effects of bilinguals' executive functioning on the structure and function of the "universal" language neural network; (3) the differential effects of bilingualism on phonological, lexical-semantic, and syntactic aspects of language processing on the brain; and (4) the effects of age of acquisition and proficiency of the user's second language in the bilingual brain, and how these have implications for future research in neurolinguistics.

  1. Design analysis of an MPI human functional brain scanner

    PubMed Central

    Mason, Erica E.; Cooley, Clarissa Z.; Cauley, Stephen F.; Griswold, Mark A.; Conolly, Steven M.; Wald, Lawrence L.

    2017-01-01

    MPI’s high sensitivity makes it a promising modality for imaging brain function. Functional contrast is proposed based on blood SPION concentration changes due to Cerebral Blood Volume (CBV) increases during activation, a mechanism utilized in fMRI studies. MPI offers the potential for a direct and more sensitive measure of SPION concentration, and thus CBV, than fMRI. As such, fMPI could surpass fMRI in sensitivity, enhancing the scientific and clinical value of functional imaging. As human-sized MPI systems have not been attempted, we assess the technical challenges of scaling MPI from rodent to human brain. We use a full-system MPI simulator to test arbitrary hardware designs and encoding practices, and we examine tradeoffs imposed by constraints that arise when scaling to human size as well as safety constraints (PNS and central nervous system stimulation) not considered in animal scanners, thereby estimating spatial resolutions and sensitivities achievable with current technology. Using a projection FFL MPI system, we examine coil hardware options and their implications for sensitivity and spatial resolution. We estimate that an fMPI brain scanner is feasible, although with reduced sensitivity (20×) and spatial resolution (5×) compared to existing rodent systems. Nonetheless, it retains sufficient sensitivity and spatial resolution to make it an attractive future instrument for studying the human brain; additional technical innovations can result in further improvements. PMID:28752130

  2. Mapping Multiplex Hubs in Human Functional Brain Networks

    PubMed Central

    De Domenico, Manlio; Sasai, Shuntaro; Arenas, Alex

    2016-01-01

    Typical brain networks consist of many peripheral regions and a few highly central ones, i.e., hubs, playing key functional roles in cerebral inter-regional interactions. Studies have shown that networks, obtained from the analysis of specific frequency components of brain activity, present peculiar architectures with unique profiles of region centrality. However, the identification of hubs in networks built from different frequency bands simultaneously is still a challenging problem, remaining largely unexplored. Here we identify each frequency component with one layer of a multiplex network and face this challenge by exploiting the recent advances in the analysis of multiplex topologies. First, we show that each frequency band carries unique topological information, fundamental to accurately model brain functional networks. We then demonstrate that hubs in the multiplex network, in general different from those ones obtained after discarding or aggregating the measured signals as usual, provide a more accurate map of brain's most important functional regions, allowing to distinguish between healthy and schizophrenic populations better than conventional network approaches. PMID:27471443

  3. Neurolinguistics: Structure, Function, and Connectivity in the Bilingual Brain

    PubMed Central

    Wong, Becky; Yin, Bin; O'Brien, Beth

    2016-01-01

    Advances in neuroimaging techniques and analytic methods have led to a proliferation of studies investigating the impact of bilingualism on the cognitive and brain systems in humans. Lately, these findings have attracted much interest and debate in the field, leading to a number of recent commentaries and reviews. Here, we contribute to the ongoing discussion by compiling and interpreting the plethora of findings that relate to the structural, functional, and connective changes in the brain that ensue from bilingualism. In doing so, we integrate theoretical models and empirical findings from linguistics, cognitive/developmental psychology, and neuroscience to examine the following issues: (1) whether the language neural network is different for first (dominant) versus second (nondominant) language processing; (2) the effects of bilinguals' executive functioning on the structure and function of the “universal” language neural network; (3) the differential effects of bilingualism on phonological, lexical-semantic, and syntactic aspects of language processing on the brain; and (4) the effects of age of acquisition and proficiency of the user's second language in the bilingual brain, and how these have implications for future research in neurolinguistics. PMID:26881224

  4. Cross-hemispheric functional connectivity in the human fetal brain.

    PubMed

    Thomason, Moriah E; Dassanayake, Maya T; Shen, Stephen; Katkuri, Yashwanth; Alexis, Mitchell; Anderson, Amy L; Yeo, Lami; Mody, Swati; Hernandez-Andrade, Edgar; Hassan, Sonia S; Studholme, Colin; Jeong, Jeong-Won; Romero, Roberto

    2013-02-20

    Compelling evidence indicates that psychiatric and developmental disorders are generally caused by disruptions in the functional connectivity (FC) of brain networks. Events occurring during development, and in particular during fetal life, have been implicated in the genesis of such disorders. However, the developmental timetable for the emergence of neural FC during human fetal life is unknown. We present the results of resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging performed in 25 healthy human fetuses in the second and third trimesters of pregnancy (24 to 38 weeks of gestation). We report the presence of bilateral fetal brain FC and regional and age-related variation in FC. Significant bilateral connectivity was evident in half of the 42 areas tested, and the strength of FC between homologous cortical brain regions increased with advancing gestational age. We also observed medial to lateral gradients in fetal functional brain connectivity. These findings improve understanding of human fetal central nervous system development and provide a basis for examining the role of insults during fetal life in the subsequent development of disorders in neural FC.

  5. Brain Functional and Structural Predictors of Language Performance.

    PubMed

    Skeide, Michael A; Brauer, Jens; Friederici, Angela D

    2016-05-01

    The relation between brain function and behavior on the one hand and the relation between structural changes and behavior on the other as well as the link between the 2 aspects are core issues in cognitive neuroscience. It is an open question, however, whether brain function or brain structure is the better predictor for age-specific cognitive performance. Here, in a comprehensive set of analyses, we investigated the direct relation between hemodynamic activity in 2 pairs of frontal and temporal cortical areas, 2 long-distance white matter fiber tracts connecting each pair and sentence comprehension performance of 4 age groups, including 3 groups of children between 3 and 10 years as well as young adults. We show that the increasing accuracy of processing complex sentences throughout development is correlated with the blood-oxygen-level-dependent activation of 2 core language processing regions in Broca's area and the posterior portion of the superior temporal gyrus. Moreover, both accuracy and speed of processing are correlated with the maturational status of the arcuate fasciculus, that is, the dorsal white matter fiber bundle connecting these 2 regions. The present data provide compelling evidence for the view that brain function and white matter structure together best predict developing cognitive performance. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  6. Functional MRI and intraoperative brain mapping to evaluate brain plasticity in patients with brain tumours and hemiparesis

    PubMed Central

    Roux, F; Boulanouar, K; Ibarrola, D; Tremoulet, M; Chollet, F; Berry, I

    2000-01-01

    OBJECTIVE—To support the hypothesis about the potential compensatory role of ipsilateral corticofugal pathways when the contralateral pathways are impaired by brain tumours.
METHODS—Retrospective analysis was carried out on the results of functional MRI (fMRI) of a selected group of five paretic patients with Rolandic brain tumours who exhibited an abnormally high ipsilateral/contralateral ratio of activation—that is, movements of the paretic hand activated predominately the ipsilateral cortex. Brain activation was achieved with a flexion extension of the fingers. Statistical parametric activation was obtained using a t test and a threshold of p<0.001. These patients, candidates for tumour resection, also underwent cortical intraoperative stimulation that was correlated to the fMRI spatial data using three dimensional reconstructions of the brain. Three patients also had postoperative control fMRI.
RESULTS—The absence of fMRI activation of the primary sensorimotor cortex normally innervating the paretic hand for the threshold chosen, was correlated with completely negative cortical responses of the cortical hand area during the operation. The preoperative fMRI activation of these patients predominantly found in the ipsilateral frontal and primary sensorimotor cortices could be related to the residual ipsilateral hand function. Postoperatively, the fMRI activation returned to more classic patterns of activation, reflecting the consequences of therapy.
CONCLUSION—In paretic patients with brain tumours, ipsilateral control could be implicated in the residual hand function, when the normal primary pathways are impaired. The possibility that functional tissue still remains in the peritumorous sensorimotor cortex even when the preoperative fMRI and the cortical intraoperative stimulations are negative, should be taken into account when planning the tumour resection and during the operation.

 PMID:10990503

  7. Partial sleep in the context of augmentation of brain function

    PubMed Central

    Pigarev, Ivan N.; Pigareva, Marina L.

    2014-01-01

    Inability to solve complex problems or errors in decision making is often attributed to poor brain processing, and raises the issue of brain augmentation. Investigation of neuronal activity in the cerebral cortex in the sleep-wake cycle offers insights into the mechanisms underlying the reduction in mental abilities for complex problem solving. Some cortical areas may transit into a sleep state while an organism is still awake. Such local sleep would reduce behavioral ability in the tasks for which the sleeping areas are crucial. The studies of this phenomenon have indicated that local sleep develops in high order cortical areas. This is why complex problem solving is mostly affected by local sleep, and prevention of local sleep might be a potential way of augmentation of brain function. For this approach to brain augmentation not to entail negative consequences for the organism, it is necessary to understand the functional role of sleep. Our studies have given an unexpected answer to this question. It was shown that cortical areas that process signals from extero- and proprioreceptors during wakefulness, switch to the processing of interoceptive information during sleep. It became clear that during sleep all “computational power” of the brain is directed to the restoration of the vital functions of internal organs. These results explain the logic behind the initiation of total and local sleep. Indeed, a mismatch between the current parameters of any visceral system and the genetically determined normal range would provide the feeling of tiredness, or sleep pressure. If an environmental situation allows falling asleep, the organism would transit to a normal total sleep in all cortical areas. However, if it is impossible to go to sleep immediately, partial sleep may develop in some cortical areas in the still behaviorally awake organism. This local sleep may reduce both the “intellectual power” and the restorative function of sleep for visceral organs. PMID

  8. The development of social brain functions in infancy.

    PubMed

    Grossmann, Tobias

    2015-11-01

    One fundamental question in psychology is what makes humans such intensely social beings. Probing the developmental and neural origins of our social capacities is a way of addressing this question. In the last 10 years the field of social-cognitive development has witnessed a surge in studies using neuroscience methods to elucidate the development of social information processing during infancy. While the use of electroencephalography (EEG)/event-related brain potentials (ERPs) and functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) has revealed a great deal about the timing and localization of the cortical processes involved in early social cognition, the principles underpinning the early development of social brain functioning remain largely unexplored. Here I provide a framework that delineates the essential processes implicated in the early development of the social brain. In particular, I argue that the development of social brain functions in infancy is characterized by the following key principles: (a) self-relevance, (b) joint engagement, (c) predictability, (d) categorization, (e) discrimination, and (f) integration. For all of the proposed principles, I provide empirical examples to illustrate when in infancy they emerge. Moreover, I discuss to what extent they are in fact specifically social in nature or share properties with more domain-general developmental principles. Taken together, this article provides a conceptual integration of the existing EEG/ERPs and fNIRS work on infant social brain function and thereby offers the basis for a principle-based approach to studying the neural correlates of early social cognition. (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).

  9. Partial sleep in the context of augmentation of brain function.

    PubMed

    Pigarev, Ivan N; Pigareva, Marina L

    2014-01-01

    Inability to solve complex problems or errors in decision making is often attributed to poor brain processing, and raises the issue of brain augmentation. Investigation of neuronal activity in the cerebral cortex in the sleep-wake cycle offers insights into the mechanisms underlying the reduction in mental abilities for complex problem solving. Some cortical areas may transit into a sleep state while an organism is still awake. Such local sleep would reduce behavioral ability in the tasks for which the sleeping areas are crucial. The studies of this phenomenon have indicated that local sleep develops in high order cortical areas. This is why complex problem solving is mostly affected by local sleep, and prevention of local sleep might be a potential way of augmentation of brain function. For this approach to brain augmentation not to entail negative consequences for the organism, it is necessary to understand the functional role of sleep. Our studies have given an unexpected answer to this question. It was shown that cortical areas that process signals from extero- and proprioreceptors during wakefulness, switch to the processing of interoceptive information during sleep. It became clear that during sleep all "computational power" of the brain is directed to the restoration of the vital functions of internal organs. These results explain the logic behind the initiation of total and local sleep. Indeed, a mismatch between the current parameters of any visceral system and the genetically determined normal range would provide the feeling of tiredness, or sleep pressure. If an environmental situation allows falling asleep, the organism would transit to a normal total sleep in all cortical areas. However, if it is impossible to go to sleep immediately, partial sleep may develop in some cortical areas in the still behaviorally awake organism. This local sleep may reduce both the "intellectual power" and the restorative function of sleep for visceral organs.

  10. Brain structural and functional correlates of resilience to Bipolar Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Frangou, Sophia

    2011-01-01

    Background: Resilient adaptation can be construed in different ways, but as used here it refers to adaptive brain responses associated with avoidance of psychopathology despite expressed genetic predisposition to Bipolar Disorder (BD). Although family history of BD is associated with elevated risk of affective morbidity a significant proportion of first-degree relatives remain free of psychopathology. Examination of brain structure and function in these individuals may inform on adaptive responses that pre-empt disease expression. Methods: Data presented here are derived from the Vulnerability to Bipolar Disorders Study (VIBES) which includes BD patients, asymptomatic relatives and controls. Participants underwent extensive investigations including brain structural (sMRI) and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). We present results from sMRI voxel-based-morphometry and from conventional and connectivity analyses of fMRI data obtained during the Stroop Colour Word Test (SCWT), a task of cognitive control during conflict resolution. All analyses were implemented using Statistical Parametric Mapping software version 5 (SPM5). Resilience in relatives was operationalized as the lifetime absence of clinical-range symptoms. Results: Resilient relatives of BD patients expressed structural, functional, and connectivity changes reflecting the effect of genetic risk on the brain. These included increased insular volume, decreased activation within the posterior and inferior parietal regions involved in selective attention during the SCWT, and reduced fronto-insular and fronto-cingulate connectivity. Resilience was associated with increased cerebellar vermal volume and enhanced functional coupling between the dorsal and the ventral prefrontal cortex during the SCWT. Conclusions: Our findings suggests the presence of biological mechanisms associated with resilient adaptation of brain networks and pave the way for the identification of outcome-specific trajectories given

  11. Acetyl-L-carnitine improves aged brain function.

    PubMed

    Kobayashi, Satoru; Iwamoto, Machiko; Kon, Kazuo; Waki, Hatsue; Ando, Susumu; Tanaka, Yasukazu

    2010-07-01

    The effects of acetyl-L-carnitine (ALCAR), an acetyl derivative of L-carnitine, on memory and learning capacity and on brain synaptic functions of aged rats were examined. Male Fischer 344 rats were given ALCAR (100 mg/kg bodyweight) per os for 3 months and were subjected to the Hebb-Williams tasks and AKON-1 task to assess their learning capacity. Cholinergic activities were determined with synaptosomes isolated from brain cortices of the rats. Choline parameters, the high-affinity choline uptake, acetylcholine (ACh) synthesis and depolarization-evoked ACh release were all enhanced in the ALCAR group. An increment of depolarization-induced calcium ion influx into synaptosomes was also evident in rats given ALCAR. Electrophysiological studies using hippocampus slices indicated that the excitatory postsynaptic potential slope and population spike size were both increased in ALCAR-treated rats. These results indicate that ALCAR increases synaptic neurotransmission in the brain and consequently improves learning capacity in aging rats.

  12. Two distinct forms of functional lateralization in the human brain

    PubMed Central

    Gotts, Stephen J.; Jo, Hang Joon; Wallace, Gregory L.; Saad, Ziad S.; Cox, Robert W.; Martin, Alex

    2013-01-01

    The hemispheric lateralization of certain faculties in the human brain has long been held to be beneficial for functioning. However, quantitative relationships between the degree of lateralization in particular brain regions and the level of functioning have yet to be established. Here we demonstrate that two distinct forms of functional lateralization are present in the left vs. the right cerebral hemisphere, with the left hemisphere showing a preference to interact more exclusively with itself, particularly for cortical regions involved in language and fine motor coordination. In contrast, right-hemisphere cortical regions involved in visuospatial and attentional processing interact in a more integrative fashion with both hemispheres. The degree of lateralization present in these distinct systems selectively predicted behavioral measures of verbal and visuospatial ability, providing direct evidence that lateralization is associated with enhanced cognitive ability. PMID:23959883

  13. [Effects of anesthetics on the higher brain function].

    PubMed

    Sobue, Kazuya; Note, Hideaki; So, MinHye

    2014-11-01

    Number of surgeries for the elderly is increasing year by year. Postoperative cognitive dysfunction, POCD, and delirium are typical failure's of higher brain function after surgery. The mechanism of POCD and delirium has been suggested to be associated with inflammation, but its details are unknown. Alzheimer's disease leads to derangement in cognitive function. The number of patients with Alzheimer's disease is expected to increase rapidly. There is a possibility that inhalation anesthesia exacerbates the pathology of patients with impaired higher brain function such as Alzheimer's disease. On the other hand, the another suspect, that propofol is safe. However, it should be recognized that these results became clear by basic research. Further clinical study is required.

  14. Dynamic reorganization of intrinsic functional networks in the mouse brain.

    PubMed

    Grandjean, Joanes; Preti, Maria Giulia; Bolton, Thomas A W; Buerge, Michaela; Seifritz, Erich; Pryce, Christopher R; Van De Ville, Dimitri; Rudin, Markus

    2017-03-14

    Functional connectivity (FC) derived from resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI) allows for the integrative study of neuronal processes at a macroscopic level. The majority of studies to date have assumed stationary interactions between brain regions, without considering the dynamic aspects of network organization. Only recently has the latter received increased attention, predominantly in human studies. Applying dynamic FC (dFC) analysis to mice is attractive given the relative simplicity of the mouse brain and the possibility to explore mechanisms underlying network dynamics using pharmacological, environmental or genetic interventions. Therefore, we have evaluated the feasibility and research potential of mouse dFC using the interventions of social stress or anesthesia duration as two case-study examples. By combining a sliding-window correlation approach with dictionary learning, several dynamic functional states (dFS) with a complex organization were identified, exhibiting highly dynamic inter- and intra-modular interactions. Each dFS displayed a high degree of reproducibility upon changes in analytical parameters and across datasets. They fluctuated at different degrees as a function of anesthetic depth, and were sensitive indicators of pathology as shown for the chronic psychosocial stress mouse model of depression. Dynamic functional states are proposed to make a major contribution to information integration and processing in the healthy and diseased brain.

  15. The neurobiology of giving versus receiving support: The role of stress-related and social reward-related neural activity

    PubMed Central

    Inagaki, Tristen K.; Byrne Haltom, Kate E.; Suzuki, Shosuke; Jevtic, Ivana; Hornstein, Erica; Bower, Julienne E.; Eisenberger, Naomi I.

    2015-01-01

    Objectives There is a strong association between supportive ties and health. However most research has focused on the health benefits that come from the support one receives while largely ignoring the support giver and how giving may contribute to good health. Moreover, few studies have examined the neural mechanisms associated with support giving or how giving support compares to receiving support. Method The current study assessed the relationships: 1) between self-reported receiving and giving social support and vulnerability for negative psychological outcomes and 2) between receiving and giving social support and neural activity to socially rewarding and stressful tasks. Thirty-six participants (M age=22.36, SD=3.78, 44% female) completed three tasks in the fMRI scanner: (1) a stress task (mental arithmetic under evaluative threat), (2) an affiliative task (viewing images of close others), and (3) a prosocial task. Results Both self-reported receiving and giving social support were associated with reduced vulnerability for negative psychological outcomes. However, across the three neuroimaging tasks, giving, but not receiving support was related to reduced stress-related activity (dorsal anterior cingulate cortex, (r=−.27), left (r=−.28) and right anterior insula (r=−.33), and left (r=−.32) and right amygdala (r=−.32) to a stress task, greater reward-related activity (left (r=.42) and right ventral striatum (VS; r=.41) to an affiliative task, and greater caregiving-related activity (left VS (r=.31), right VS (r=.31), and septal area (r=.39) to a prosocial task. Conclusion These results contribute to an emerging literature suggesting that support giving is an overlooked contributor to how social support can benefit health. PMID:26867078

  16. Exercise-mimetic AICAR transiently benefits brain function.

    PubMed

    Guerrieri, Davide; van Praag, Henriette

    2015-07-30

    Exercise enhances learning and memory in animals and humans. The role of peripheral factors that may trigger the beneficial effects of running on brain function has been sparsely examined. In particular, it is unknown whether AMP-kinase (AMPK) activation in muscle can predict enhancement of brain plasticity. Here we compare the effects of running and administration of AMPK agonist 5-Aminoimidazole-4-carboxamide 1-β-D-ribofuranoside (AICAR, 500 mg/kg), for 3, 7 or 14 days in one-month-old male C57BL/6J mice, on muscle AMPK signaling. At the time-points where we observed equivalent running- and AICAR-induced muscle pAMPK levels (7 and 14 days), cell proliferation, synaptic plasticity and gene expression, as well as markers of oxidative stress and inflammation in the dentate gyrus (DG) of the hippocampus and lateral entorhinal cortex (LEC) were evaluated. At the 7-day time-point, both regimens increased new DG cell number and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) protein levels. Furthermore, microarray analysis of DG and LEC tissue showed a remarkable overlap between running and AICAR in the regulation of neuronal, mitochondrial and metabolism related gene classes. Interestingly, while similar outcomes for both treatments were stable over time in muscle, in the brain an inversion occurred at fourteen days. The compound no longer increased DG cell proliferation or neurotrophin levels, and upregulated expression of apoptotic genes and inflammatory cytokine interleukin-1β. Thus, an exercise mimetic that produces changes in muscle consistent with those of exercise does not have the same sustainable positive effects on the brain, indicating that only running consistently benefits brain function.

  17. Exercise-mimetic AICAR transiently benefits brain function

    PubMed Central

    Guerrieri, Davide; van Praag, Henriette

    2015-01-01

    Exercise enhances learning and memory in animals and humans. The role of peripheral factors that may trigger the beneficial effects of running on brain function has been sparsely examined. In particular, it is unknown whether AMP-kinase (AMPK) activation in muscle can predict enhancement of brain plasticity. Here we compare the effects of running and administration of AMPK agonist 5-Aminoimidazole-4-carboxamide 1-β-D-ribofuranoside (AICAR, 500 mg/kg), for 3, 7 or 14 days in one-month-old male C57BL/6J mice, on muscle AMPK signaling. At the time-points where we observed equivalent running- and AICAR-induced muscle pAMPK levels (7 and 14 days), cell proliferation, synaptic plasticity and gene expression, as well as markers of oxidative stress and inflammation in the dentate gyrus (DG) of the hippocampus and lateral entorhinal cortex (LEC) were evaluated. At the 7-day time-point, both regimens increased new DG cell number and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) protein levels. Furthermore, microarray analysis of DG and LEC tissue showed a remarkable overlap between running and AICAR in the regulation of neuronal, mitochondrial and metabolism related gene classes. Interestingly, while similar outcomes for both treatments were stable over time in muscle, in the brain an inversion occurred at fourteen days. The compound no longer increased DG cell proliferation or neurotrophin levels, and upregulated expression of apoptotic genes and inflammatory cytokine interleukin-1β. Thus, an exercise mimetic that produces changes in muscle consistent with those of exercise does not have the same sustainable positive effects on the brain, indicating that only running consistently benefits brain function. PMID:26286955

  18. Functional integrity in children with anoxic brain injury from drowning.

    PubMed

    Ishaque, Mariam; Manning, Janessa H; Woolsey, Mary D; Franklin, Crystal G; Tullis, Elizabeth W; Beckmann, Christian F; Fox, Peter T

    2017-10-01

    Drowning is a leading cause of accidental injury and death in young children. Anoxic brain injury (ABI) is a common consequence of drowning and can cause severe neurological morbidity in survivors. Assessment of functional status and prognostication in drowning victims can be extremely challenging, both acutely and chronically. Structural neuroimaging modalities (CT and MRI) have been of limited clinical value. Here, we tested the utility of resting-state functional MRI (rs-fMRI) for assessing brain functional integrity in this population. Eleven children with chronic, spastic quadriplegia due to drowning-induced ABI were investigated. All were comatose immediately after the injury and gradually regained consciousness, but with varying ability to communicate their cognitive state. Eleven neurotypical children matched for age and gender formed the control group. Resting-state fMRI and co-registered T1-weighted anatomical MRI were acquired at night during drug-aided sleep. Network integrity was quantified by independent components analysis (ICA), at both group- and per-subject levels. Functional-status assessments based on in-home observations were provided by families and caregivers. Motor ICNs were grossly compromised in ABI patients both group-wise and individually, concordant with their prominent motor deficits. Striking preservations of perceptual and cognitive ICNs were observed, and the degree of network preservation correlated (ρ = 0.74) with the per-subject functional status assessments. Collectively, our findings indicate that rs-fMRI has promise for assessing brain functional integrity in ABI and, potentially, in other disorders. Furthermore, our observations suggest that the severe motor deficits observed in this population can mask relatively intact perceptual and cognitive capabilities. Hum Brain Mapp 38:4813-4831, 2017. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  19. Thyroid hormone receptors in brain development and function.

    PubMed

    Bernal, Juan

    2007-03-01

    Thyroid hormones are important during development of the mammalian brain, acting on migration and differentiation of neural cells, synaptogenesis, and myelination. The actions of thyroid hormones are mediated through nuclear thyroid hormone receptors (TRs) and regulation of gene expression. The purpose of this article is to review the role of TRs in brain maturation. In developing humans maternal and fetal thyroid glands provide thyroid hormones to the fetal brain, but the timing of receptor ontogeny agrees with clinical data on the importance of the maternal thyroid gland before midgestation. Several TR isoforms, which are encoded by the THRA and THRB genes, are expressed in the brain, with the most common being TRalpha1. Deletion of TRalpha1 in rodents is not, however, equivalent to hormone deprivation and, paradoxically, even prevents the effects of hypothyroidism. Unliganded receptor activity is, therefore, probably an important factor in causing the harmful effects of hypothyroidism. Accordingly, expression of a mutant receptor with impaired triiodothyronine (T(3)) binding and dominant negative activity affected cerebellar development and motor performance. TRs are also involved in adult brain function. TRalpha1 deletion, or expression of a dominant negative mutant receptor, induces consistent behavioral changes in adult mice, leading to severe anxiety and morphological changes in the hippocampus.

  20. Thinking, Walking, Talking: Integratory Motor and Cognitive Brain Function

    PubMed Central

    Leisman, Gerry; Moustafa, Ahmed A.; Shafir, Tal

    2016-01-01

    In this article, we argue that motor and cognitive processes are functionally related and most likely share a similar evolutionary history. This is supported by clinical and neural data showing that some brain regions integrate both motor and cognitive functions. In addition, we also argue that cognitive processes coincide with complex motor output. Further, we also review data that support the converse notion that motor processes can contribute to cognitive function, as found by many rehabilitation and aerobic exercise training programs. Support is provided for motor and cognitive processes possessing dynamic bidirectional influences on each other. PMID:27252937

  1. Meta-analysis of functional brain imaging in specific phobia.

    PubMed

    Ipser, Jonathan C; Singh, Leesha; Stein, Dan J

    2013-07-01

    Although specific phobia is a prevalent anxiety disorder, evidence regarding its underlying functional neuroanatomy is inconsistent. A meta-analysis was undertaken to identify brain regions that were consistently responsive to phobic stimuli, and to characterize changes in brain activation following cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). We searched the PubMed, SCOPUS and PsycINFO databases to identify positron emission tomography and functional magnetic resonance imaging studies comparing brain activation in specific phobia patients and healthy controls. Two raters independently extracted study data from all the eligible studies, and pooled coordinates from these studies using activation likelihood estimation, a quantitative meta-analytic technique. Resulting statistical parametric maps were compared between patients and healthy controls, in response to phobic versus fear-evoking stimuli, and before and after therapy. Thirteen studies were included, comprising 327 participants. Regions that were consistently activated in response to phobic stimuli included the left insula, amygdala, and globus pallidus. Compared to healthy controls, phobic subjects had increased activation in response to phobic stimuli in the left amygdala/globus pallidus, left insula, right thalamus (pulvinar), and cerebellum. Following exposure-based therapy widespread deactivation was observed in the right frontal cortex, limbic cortex, basal ganglia and cerebellum, with increased activation detected in the thalamus. Exposure to phobia-specific stimuli elicits brain activation that is consistent with current understandings of the neuroanatomy of fear conditioning and extinction. There is evidence that the effects of CBT in specific phobia may be mediated through the same underlying neurocircuitry.

  2. Structural and functional brain changes in delusional disorder.

    PubMed

    Vicens, Victor; Radua, Joaquim; Salvador, Raymond; Anguera-Camós, Maria; Canales-Rodríguez, Erick J; Sarró, Salvador; Maristany, Teresa; McKenna, Peter J; Pomarol-Clotet, Edith

    2016-02-01

    Delusional disorder has been the subject of very little investigation using brain imaging. To examine potential structural and/or functional brain abnormalities in this disorder. We used structural imaging (voxel-based morphometry, VBM) and functional imaging (during performance of the n-back task and whole-brain resting connectivity analysis) to examine 22 patients meeting DSM-IV criteria for delusional disorder and 44 matched healthy controls. The patients showed grey matter reductions in the medial frontal/anterior cingulate cortex and bilateral insula on unmodulated (but not on modulated) VBM analysis, failure of de-activation in the medial frontal/anterior cingulate cortex during performance of the n-back task, and decreased resting-state connectivity in the bilateral insula. The findings provide evidence of brain abnormality in the medial frontal/anterior cingulate cortex and insula in delusional disorder. A role for the former region in the pathogenesis of delusions is consistent with several other lines of evidence. © The Royal College of Psychiatrists 2016.

  3. Functional brain networks associated with eating behaviors in obesity.

    PubMed

    Park, Bo-Yong; Seo, Jongbum; Park, Hyunjin

    2016-03-31

    Obesity causes critical health problems including diabetes and hypertension that affect billions of people worldwide. Obesity and eating behaviors are believed to be closely linked but their relationship through brain networks has not been fully explored. We identified functional brain networks associated with obesity and examined how the networks were related to eating behaviors. Resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans were obtained for 82 participants. Data were from an equal number of people of healthy weight (HW) and non-healthy weight (non-HW). Connectivity matrices were computed with spatial maps derived using a group independent component analysis approach. Brain networks and associated connectivity parameters with significant group-wise differences were identified and correlated with scores on a three-factor eating questionnaire (TFEQ) describing restraint, disinhibition, and hunger eating behaviors. Frontoparietal and cerebellum networks showed group-wise differences between HW and non-HW groups. Frontoparietal network showed a high correlation with TFEQ disinhibition scores. Both frontoparietal and cerebellum networks showed a high correlation with body mass index (BMI) scores. Brain networks with significant group-wise differences between HW and non-HW groups were identified. Parts of the identified networks showed a high correlation with eating behavior scores.

  4. Sleep Restriction Impairs Blood–Brain Barrier Function

    PubMed Central

    He, Junyun; Hsuchou, Hung; He, Yi; Kastin, Abba J.; Wang, Yuping

    2014-01-01

    The blood–brain barrier (BBB) is a large regulatory and exchange interface between the brain and peripheral circulation. We propose that changes of the BBB contribute to many pathophysiological processes in the brain of subjects with chronic sleep restriction (CSR). To achieve CSR that mimics a common pattern of human sleep loss, we quantified a new procedure of sleep disruption in mice by a week of consecutive sleep recording. We then tested the hypothesis that CSR compromises microvascular function. CSR not only diminished endothelial and inducible nitric oxide synthase, endothelin1, and glucose transporter expression in cerebral microvessels of the BBB, but it also decreased 2-deoxy-glucose uptake by the brain. The expression of several tight junction proteins also was decreased, whereas the level of cyclooxygenase-2 increased. This coincided with an increase of paracellular permeability of the BBB to the small tracers sodium fluorescein and biotin. CSR for 6 d was sufficient to impair BBB structure and function, although the increase of paracellular permeability returned to baseline after 24 h of recovery sleep. This merits attention not only in neuroscience research but also in public health policy and clinical practice. PMID:25355222

  5. Sleep restriction impairs blood-brain barrier function.

    PubMed

    He, Junyun; Hsuchou, Hung; He, Yi; Kastin, Abba J; Wang, Yuping; Pan, Weihong

    2014-10-29

    The blood-brain barrier (BBB) is a large regulatory and exchange interface between the brain and peripheral circulation. We propose that changes of the BBB contribute to many pathophysiological processes in the brain of subjects with chronic sleep restriction (CSR). To achieve CSR that mimics a common pattern of human sleep loss, we quantified a new procedure of sleep disruption in mice by a week of consecutive sleep recording. We then tested the hypothesis that CSR compromises microvascular function. CSR not only diminished endothelial and inducible nitric oxide synthase, endothelin1, and glucose transporter expression in cerebral microvessels of the BBB, but it also decreased 2-deoxy-glucose uptake by the brain. The expression of several tight junction proteins also was decreased, whereas the level of cyclooxygenase-2 increased. This coincided with an increase of paracellular permeability of the BBB to the small tracers sodium fluorescein and biotin. CSR for 6 d was sufficient to impair BBB structure and function, although the increase of paracellular permeability returned to baseline after 24 h of recovery sleep. This merits attention not only in neuroscience research but also in public health policy and clinical practice.

  6. Functional brain networks associated with eating behaviors in obesity

    PubMed Central

    Park, Bo-yong; Seo, Jongbum; Park, Hyunjin

    2016-01-01

    Obesity causes critical health problems including diabetes and hypertension that affect billions of people worldwide. Obesity and eating behaviors are believed to be closely linked but their relationship through brain networks has not been fully explored. We identified functional brain networks associated with obesity and examined how the networks were related to eating behaviors. Resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans were obtained for 82 participants. Data were from an equal number of people of healthy weight (HW) and non-healthy weight (non-HW). Connectivity matrices were computed with spatial maps derived using a group independent component analysis approach. Brain networks and associated connectivity parameters with significant group-wise differences were identified and correlated with scores on a three-factor eating questionnaire (TFEQ) describing restraint, disinhibition, and hunger eating behaviors. Frontoparietal and cerebellum networks showed group-wise differences between HW and non-HW groups. Frontoparietal network showed a high correlation with TFEQ disinhibition scores. Both frontoparietal and cerebellum networks showed a high correlation with body mass index (BMI) scores. Brain networks with significant group-wise differences between HW and non-HW groups were identified. Parts of the identified networks showed a high correlation with eating behavior scores. PMID:27030024

  7. Network functional connectivity and whole-brain functional connectomics to investigate cognitive decline in neurodegenerative conditions.

    PubMed

    Dipasquale, O; Cercignani, Mara

    Non-invasive mapping of brain functional connectivity (FC) has played a fundamental role in neuroscience, and numerous scientists have been fascinated by its ability to reveal the brain's intricate morphology and functional properties. In recent years, two different techniques have been developed that are able to explore FC in pathophysiological conditions and to provide simple and non-invasive biomarkers for the detection of disease onset, severity and progression. These techniques are independent component analysis, which allows a network-based functional exploration of the brain, and graph theory, which provides a quantitative characterization of the whole-brain FC. In this paper we provide an overview of these two techniques and some examples of their clinical applications in the most common neurodegenerative disorders associated with cognitive decline, including mild cognitive impairment, Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, dementia with Lewy Bodies and behavioral variant frontotemporal dementia.

  8. Functional magnetic resonance imaging of mild traumatic brain injury.

    PubMed

    Mayer, Andrew R; Bellgowan, Patrick S F; Hanlon, Faith M

    2015-02-01

    Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) offers great promise for elucidating the neuropathology associated with a single or repetitive mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI). The current review discusses the physiological underpinnings of the blood-oxygen level dependent response and how trauma affects the signal. Methodological challenges associated with fMRI data analyses are considered next, followed by a review of current mTBI findings. The majority of evoked studies have examined working memory and attentional functioning, with results suggesting a complex relationship between cognitive load/attentional demand and neuronal activation. Researchers have more recently investigated how brain trauma affects functional connectivity, and the benefits/drawbacks of evoked and functional connectivity studies are also discussed. The review concludes by discussing the major clinical challenges associated with fMRI studies of brain-injured patients, including patient heterogeneity and variations in scan-time post-injury. We conclude that the fMRI signal represents a complex filter through which researchers can measure the physiological correlates of concussive symptoms, an important goal for the burgeoning field of mTBI research.

  9. Fun cube based brain gym cognitive function assessment system.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Tao; Lin, Chung-Chih; Yu, Tsang-Chu; Sun, Jing; Hsu, Wen-Chuin; Wong, Alice May-Kuen

    2017-05-01

    The aim of this study is to design and develop a fun cube (FC) based brain gym (BG) cognitive function assessment system using the wireless sensor network and multimedia technologies. The system comprised (1) interaction devices, FCs and a workstation used as interactive tools for collecting and transferring data to the server, (2) a BG information management system responsible for managing the cognitive games and storing test results, and (3) a feedback system used for conducting the analysis of cognitive functions to assist caregivers in screening high risk groups with mild cognitive impairment. Three kinds of experiments were performed to evaluate the developed FC-based BG cognitive function assessment system. The experimental results showed that the Pearson correlation coefficient between the system's evaluation outcomes and the traditional Montreal Cognitive Assessment scores was 0.83. The average Technology Acceptance Model 2 score was close to six for 31 elderly subjects. Most subjects considered that the brain games are interesting and the FC human-machine interface is easy to learn and operate. The control group and the cognitive impairment group had statistically significant difference with respect to the accuracy of and the time taken for the brain cognitive function assessment games, including Animal Naming, Color Search, Trail Making Test, Change Blindness, and Forward / Backward Digit Span. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Functional split brain in a driving/listening paradigm

    PubMed Central

    Boly, Melanie; Mensen, Armand; Tononi, Giulio

    2016-01-01

    We often engage in two concurrent but unrelated activities, such as driving on a quiet road while listening to the radio. When we do so, does our brain split into functionally distinct entities? To address this question, we imaged brain activity with fMRI in experienced drivers engaged in a driving simulator while listening either to global positioning system instructions (integrated task) or to a radio show (split task). We found that, compared with the integrated task, the split task was characterized by reduced multivariate functional connectivity between the driving and listening networks. Furthermore, the integrated information content of the two networks, predicting their joint dynamics above and beyond their independent dynamics, was high in the integrated task and zero in the split task. Finally, individual subjects’ ability to switch between high and low information integration predicted their driving performance across integrated and split tasks. This study raises the possibility that under certain conditions of daily life, a single brain may support two independent functional streams, a “functional split brain” similar to what is observed in patients with an anatomical split. PMID:27911805

  11. Resting-state functional brain connectivity: lessons from functional near-infrared spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Niu, Haijing; He, Yong

    2014-04-01

    Resting-state functional near-infrared spectroscopy (R-fNIRS) is an active area of interest and is currently attracting considerable attention as a new imaging tool for the study of resting-state brain function. Using variations in hemodynamic concentration signals, R-fNIRS measures the brain's low-frequency spontaneous neural activity, combining the advantages of portability, low-cost, high temporal sampling rate and less physical burden to participants. The temporal synchronization of spontaneous neuronal activity in anatomically separated regions is referred to as resting-state functional connectivity (RSFC). In the past several years, an increasing body of R-fNIRS RSFC studies has led to many important findings about functional integration among local or whole-brain regions by measuring inter-regional temporal synchronization. Here, we summarize recent advances made in the R-fNIRS RSFC methodologies, from the detection of RSFC (e.g., seed-based correlation analysis, independent component analysis, whole-brain correlation analysis, and graph-theoretical topological analysis), to the assessment of RSFC performance (e.g., reliability, repeatability, and validity), to the application of RSFC in studying normal development and brain disorders. The literature reviewed here suggests that RSFC analyses based on R-fNIRS data are valid and reliable for the study of brain function in healthy and diseased populations, thus providing a promising imaging tool for cognitive science and clinics.

  12. Large-scale brain networks in affective and social neuroscience: towards an integrative functional architecture of the brain.

    PubMed

    Barrett, Lisa Feldman; Satpute, Ajay Bhaskar

    2013-06-01

    Understanding how a human brain creates a human mind ultimately depends on mapping psychological categories and concepts to physical measurements of neural response. Although it has long been assumed that emotional, social, and cognitive phenomena are realized in the operations of separate brain regions or brain networks, we demonstrate that it is possible to understand the body of neuroimaging evidence using a framework that relies on domain general, distributed structure-function mappings. We review current research in affective and social neuroscience and argue that the emerging science of large-scale intrinsic brain networks provides a coherent framework for a domain-general functional architecture of the human brain.

  13. Large-scale brain networks in affective and social neuroscience: Towards an integrative functional architecture of the brain

    PubMed Central

    Barrett, Lisa Feldman; Satpute, Ajay

    2013-01-01

    Understanding how a human brain creates a human mind ultimately depends on mapping psychological categories and concepts to physical measurements of neural response. Although it has long been assumed that emotional, social, and cognitive phenomena are realized in the operations of separate brain regions or brain networks, we demonstrate that it is possible to understand the body of neuroimaging evidence using a framework that relies on domain general, distributed structure-function mappings. We review current research in affective and social neuroscience and argue that the emerging science of large-scale intrinsic brain networks provides a coherent framework for a domain-general functional architecture of the human brain. PMID:23352202

  14. Functional connectivity networks for preoperative brain mapping in neurosurgery.

    PubMed

    Hart, Michael G; Price, Stephen J; Suckling, John

    2016-08-26

    OBJECTIVE Resection of focal brain lesions involves maximizing the resection while preserving brain function. Mapping brain function has entered a new era focusing on distributed connectivity networks at "rest," that is, in the absence of a specific task or stimulus, requiring minimal participant engagement. Central to this frame shift has been the development of methods for the rapid assessment of whole-brain connectivity with functional MRI (fMRI) involving blood oxygenation level-dependent imaging. The authors appraised the feasibility of fMRI-based mapping of a repertoire of functional connectivity networks in neurosurgical patients with focal lesions and the potential benefits of resting-state connectivity mapping for surgical planning. METHODS Resting-state fMRI sequences with a 3-T scanner and multiecho echo-planar imaging coupled to independent component analysis were acquired preoperatively from 5 study participants who had a right temporoparietooccipital glioblastoma. Seed-based functional connectivity analysis was performed with InstaCorr. Network identification focused on 7 major functional connectivity networks described in the literature and a putative language network centered on Broca's area. RESULTS All 8 functional connectivity networks were identified in each participant. Tumor-related topological changes to the default mode network were observed in all participants. In addition, each participant had at least 1 other abnormal network, and each network was abnormal in at least 1 participant. Individual patterns of network irregularities were identified with a qualitative approach and included local displacement due to mass effect, loss of a functional network component, and recruitment of new regions. CONCLUSIONS Resting-state fMRI can reliably and rapidly detect common functional connectivity networks in patients with glioblastoma and also has sufficient sensitivity for identifying patterns of network alterations. Mapping of functional

  15. Control channels in the brain and their influence on brain executive functions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meng, Qinglei; Choa, Fow-Sen; Hong, Elliot; Wang, Zhiguang; Islam, Mohammad

    2014-05-01

    In a computer network there are distinct data channels and control channels where massive amount of visual information are transported through data channels but the information streams are routed and controlled by intelligent algorithm through "control channels". Recent studies on cognition and consciousness have shown that the brain control channels are closely related to the brainwave beta (14-40 Hz) and alpha (7-13 Hz) oscillations. The high-beta wave is used by brain to synchronize local neural activities and the alpha oscillation is for desynchronization. When two sensory inputs are simultaneously presented to a person, the high-beta is used to select one of the inputs and the alpha is used to deselect the other so that only one input will get the attention. In this work we demonstrated that we can scan a person's brain using binaural beats technique and identify the individual's preferred control channels. The identified control channels can then be used to influence the subject's brain executive functions. In the experiment, an EEG measurement system was used to record and identify a subject's control channels. After these channels were identified, the subject was asked to do Stroop tests. Binaural beats was again used to produce these control-channel frequencies on the subject's brain when we recorded the completion time of each test. We found that the high-beta signal indeed speeded up the subject's executive function performance and reduced the time to complete incongruent tests, while the alpha signal didn't seem to be able to slow down the executive function performance.

  16. Control of Brain Development, Function, and Behavior by the Microbiome

    PubMed Central

    Sampson, Timothy R.; Mazmanian, Sarkis K.

    2015-01-01

    Animals share an intimate and life-long partnership with a myriad of resident microbial species, collectively referred to as the microbiota. Symbiotic microbes have been shown to regulate nutrition and metabolism, and are critical for the development and function of the immune system. More recently, studies have suggested that gut bacteria can impact neurological outcomes – altering behavior and potentially affecting the onset and/or severity of nervous system disorders. In this review, we highlight emerging evidence that the microbiome extends its influence to the brain via various pathways connecting the gut to the central nervous system. While understanding and appreciation of a gut microbial impact on neurological function is nascent, unraveling gut-microbiome-brain connections holds the promise of transforming the neurosciences and revealing potentially novel etiologies for psychiatric and neurodegenerative disorders. PMID:25974299

  17. Electrophysiological assessment of brain function in severe malnutrition.

    PubMed

    Robinson, S; Young, R E; Golden, M H

    1995-11-01

    Brain function in 10 severely malnourished children and matched controls was assessed using spectral analysis of electroencephalographic responses to photic driving during slow-wave sleep. The percentage power in the classical EEG broad-band domains was derived from temporo-occipital records. The malnourished group (5-23 months old; z-score height-for-age -3.2 +/- 0.3, weight-for-height -2.5 +/- 0.3) were tested on admission and on discharge from hospital. No significant differences were found between admission and discharge. Significant differences were found between malnourished and control groups, in the alpha 1 band in the undriven EEG, and in the alpha/beta 1 power ratio while driving at 8 Hz. These electrophysiological abnormalities, persisting despite somatic rehabilitation, must be associated with the chronic rather than the acute aspects of malnutrition, and can index the deviation of brain function from normality.

  18. Dehydration affects brain structure and function in healthy adolescents.

    PubMed

    Kempton, Matthew J; Ettinger, Ulrich; Foster, Russell; Williams, Steven C R; Calvert, Gemma A; Hampshire, Adam; Zelaya, Fernando O; O'Gorman, Ruth L; McMorris, Terry; Owen, Adrian M; Smith, Marcus S

    2011-01-01

    It was recently observed that dehydration causes shrinkage of brain tissue and an associated increase in ventricular volume. Negative effects of dehydration on cognitive performance have been shown in some but not all studies, and it has also been reported that an increased perceived effort may be required following dehydration. However, the effects of dehydration on brain function are unknown. We investigated this question using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in 10 healthy adolescents (mean age = 16.8, five females). Each subject completed a thermal exercise protocol and nonthermal exercise control condition in a cross-over repeated measures design. Subjects lost more weight via perspiration in the thermal exercise versus the control condition (P < 0.0001), and lateral ventricle enlargement correlated with the reduction in body mass (r = 0.77, P = 0.01). Dehydration following the thermal exercise protocol led to a significantly stronger increase in fronto-parietal blood-oxygen-level-dependent (BOLD) response during an executive function task (Tower of London) than the control condition, whereas cerebral perfusion during rest was not affected. The increase in BOLD response after dehydration was not paralleled by a change in cognitive performance, suggesting an inefficient use of brain metabolic activity following dehydration. This pattern indicates that participants exerted a higher level of neuronal activity in order to achieve the same performance level. Given the limited availability of brain metabolic resources, these findings suggest that prolonged states of reduced water intake may adversely impact executive functions such as planning and visuo-spatial processing.

  19. Global features of functional brain networks change with contextual disorder

    PubMed Central

    Andric, Michael; Hasson, Uri

    2015-01-01

    It is known that features of stimuli in the environment affect the strength of functional connectivity in the human brain. However, investigations to date have not converged in determining whether these also impact functional networks' global features, such as modularity strength, number of modules, partition structure, or degree distributions. We hypothesized that one environmental attribute that may strongly impact global features is the temporal regularity of the environment, as prior work indicates that differences in regularity impact regions involved in sensory, attentional and memory processes. We examined this with an fMRI study, in which participants passively listened to tonal series that had identical physical features and differed only in their regularity, as defined by the strength of transition structure between tones. We found that series-regularity induced systematic changes to global features of functional networks, including modularity strength, number of modules, partition structure, and degree distributions. In tandem, we used a novel node-level analysis to determine the extent to which brain regions maintained their within-module connectivity across experimental conditions. This analysis showed that primary sensory regions and those associated with default-mode processes are most likely to maintain their within-module connectivity across conditions, whereas prefrontal regions are least likely to do so. Our work documents a significant capacity for global-level brain network reorganization as a function of context. These findings suggest that modularity and other core, global features, while likely constrained by white-matter structural brain connections, are not completely determined by them. PMID:25988223

  20. Brain cannabinoid receptor 2: expression, function and modulation.

    PubMed

    Chen, De-Jie; Gao, Ming; Gao, Fen-Fei; Su, Quan-Xi; Wu, Jie

    2017-03-01

    Cannabis sativa (marijuana) is a fibrous flowering plant that produces an abundant variety of molecules, some with psychoactive effects. At least 4% of the world's adult population uses cannabis annually, making it one of the most frequently used illicit drugs in the world. The psychoactive effects of cannabis are mediated primarily through cannabinoid receptor (CBR) subtypes. The prevailing view is that CB1Rs are mainly expressed in the central neurons, whereas CB2Rs are predominantly expressed in peripheral immune cells. However, this traditional view has been challenged by emerging strong evidence that shows CB2Rs are moderately expressed and function in specific brain areas. New evidence has demonstrated that brain CB2Rs modulate animal drug-seeking behaviors, suggesting that these receptors may exist in brain regions that regulate drug addiction. Recently, we further confirmed that functional CB2Rs are expressed in mouse ventral tegmental area (VTA) dopamine (DA) neurons and that the activation of VTA CB2Rs reduces neuronal excitability and cocaine-seeking behavior. In addition, CB2R-mediated modulation of hippocampal CA3 neuronal excitability and network synchronization has been reported. Here, we briefly summarize recent lines of evidence showing how CB2Rs modulate function and pathophysiology in the CNS.

  1. Characterizing Resting-State Brain Function Using Arterial Spin Labeling

    PubMed Central

    Jann, Kay; Wang, Danny J.J.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Arterial spin labeling (ASL) is an increasingly established magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) technique that is finding broader applications in studying the healthy and diseased brain. This review addresses the use of ASL to assess brain function in the resting state. Following a brief technical description, we discuss the use of ASL in the following main categories: (1) resting-state functional connectivity (FC) measurement: the use of ASL-based cerebral blood flow (CBF) measurements as an alternative to the blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) technique to assess resting-state FC; (2) the link between network CBF and FC measurements: the use of network CBF as a surrogate of the metabolic activity within corresponding networks; and (3) the study of resting-state dynamic CBF-BOLD coupling and cerebral metabolism: the use of dynamic CBF information obtained using ASL to assess dynamic CBF-BOLD coupling and oxidative metabolism in the resting state. In addition, we summarize some future challenges and interesting research directions for ASL, including slice-accelerated (multiband) imaging as well as the effects of motion and other physiological confounds on perfusion-based FC measurement. In summary, this work reviews the state-of-the-art of ASL and establishes it as an increasingly viable MRI technique with high translational value in studying resting-state brain function. PMID:26106930

  2. Brain structure, executive function and appetitive traits in adolescent obesity.

    PubMed

    de Groot, C J; van den Akker, E L T; Rings, E H H M; Delemarre-van de Waal, H A; van der Grond, J

    2017-08-01

    Children with obesity show differences in brain structure, executive function and appetitive traits when compared with lean peers. Little is known on the relationship between brain structure and these traits. To investigate the relationship between differences in brain structure and executive function and appetitive traits, in obese and lean adolescents. MRI was used to measure cortical thickness and subcortical volumes. Executive function was measured by a Stop Signal-and a Choice Delay Task. Appetitive traits were measured using the Child Eating Behaviour Questionnaire. Adolescents with obesity had greater volumes of the pallidum; 1.78 mL (SE 0.03, p=0.014), when compared with controls; 1.65 mL (SE 0.02). In the group with obesity, greater pallidum volume was positively associated with the ability to delay reward in the Choice Delay Task (p=0.012). The association between pallidum volumes and Choice Delay Task in obese adolescents supports the hypothesis that the pallidum plays an important role in executive dysfunction in obese children. © 2016 World Obesity Federation.

  3. Global organization of functional brain connectivity in methamphetamine abusers.

    PubMed

    Ahmadlou, Mehran; Ahmadi, Khodabakhsh; Rezazade, Majid; Azad-Marzabadi, Esfandiar

    2013-06-01

    This study aimed to determine effects of chronic methamphetamine (MA) abuse on global organization of the functional brain connectivity. Eyes-closed resting-state EEGs of 36 MA abusers and 36 age-matched healthy subjects were recorded using a 32-channel system. The EEGs (1-60 Hz), after removing artifacts, were decomposed into the conventional EEG bands. Using visibility graph similarity (VGS) and coherence methods, the VGS and coherence matrices in each EEG band were constructed. Then the Small-World Network properties, clustering coefficient (C), mean path length (L) and C/L, of the VGS and coherence matrices, were computed in all EEG bands. Then using the Mann-Whitney test and an artificial neural network the differences of C, L and C/L between the two groups were evaluated. The MA abusers showed higher C, lower L and higher C/L at the gamma band (p-value < 0.005). An accuracy of 82.8% in discriminating the two groups was obtained by the classifier. The topology of the functional brain connectivity is disrupted in MA abusers, as depicted by deviation from Small-Worldness in the gamma band. This is the first but quasi-experimental study showing disrupted topology of the functional brain networks in MA abusers. Copyright © 2012 International Federation of Clinical Neurophysiology. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Characterizing Resting-State Brain Function Using Arterial Spin Labeling.

    PubMed

    Chen, J Jean; Jann, Kay; Wang, Danny J J

    2015-11-01

    Arterial spin labeling (ASL) is an increasingly established magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) technique that is finding broader applications in studying the healthy and diseased brain. This review addresses the use of ASL to assess brain function in the resting state. Following a brief technical description, we discuss the use of ASL in the following main categories: (1) resting-state functional connectivity (FC) measurement: the use of ASL-based cerebral blood flow (CBF) measurements as an alternative to the blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) technique to assess resting-state FC; (2) the link between network CBF and FC measurements: the use of network CBF as a surrogate of the metabolic activity within corresponding networks; and (3) the study of resting-state dynamic CBF-BOLD coupling and cerebral metabolism: the use of dynamic CBF information obtained using ASL to assess dynamic CBF-BOLD coupling and oxidative metabolism in the resting state. In addition, we summarize some future challenges and interesting research directions for ASL, including slice-accelerated (multiband) imaging as well as the effects of motion and other physiological confounds on perfusion-based FC measurement. In summary, this work reviews the state-of-the-art of ASL and establishes it as an increasingly viable MRI technique with high translational value in studying resting-state brain function.

  5. Brain cannabinoid receptor 2: expression, function and modulation

    PubMed Central

    Chen, De-jie; Gao, Ming; Gao, Fen-fei; Su, Quan-xi; Wu, Jie

    2017-01-01

    Cannabis sativa (marijuana) is a fibrous flowering plant that produces an abundant variety of molecules, some with psychoactive effects. At least 4% of the world's adult population uses cannabis annually, making it one of the most frequently used illicit drugs in the world. The psychoactive effects of cannabis are mediated primarily through cannabinoid receptor (CBR) subtypes. The prevailing view is that CB1Rs are mainly expressed in the central neurons, whereas CB2Rs are predominantly expressed in peripheral immune cells. However, this traditional view has been challenged by emerging strong evidence that shows CB2Rs are moderately expressed and function in specific brain areas. New evidence has demonstrated that brain CB2Rs modulate animal drug-seeking behaviors, suggesting that these receptors may exist in brain regions that regulate drug addiction. Recently, we further confirmed that functional CB2Rs are expressed in mouse ventral tegmental area (VTA) dopamine (DA) neurons and that the activation of VTA CB2Rs reduces neuronal excitability and cocaine-seeking behavior. In addition, CB2R-mediated modulation of hippocampal CA3 neuronal excitability and network synchronization has been reported. Here, we briefly summarize recent lines of evidence showing how CB2Rs modulate function and pathophysiology in the CNS. PMID:28065934

  6. Imaging emotional brain functions: conceptual and methodological issues.

    PubMed

    Peper, Martin

    2006-06-01

    This article reviews the psychophysiological and brain imaging literature on emotional brain function from a methodological point of view. The difficulties in defining, operationalising and measuring emotional activation and, in particular, aversive learning will be considered. Emotion is a response of the organism during an episode of major significance and involves physiological activation, motivational, perceptual, evaluative and learning processes, motor expression, action tendencies and monitoring/subjective feelings. Despite the advances in assessing the physiological correlates of emotional perception and learning processes, a critical appraisal shows that functional neuroimaging approaches encounter methodological difficulties regarding measurement precision (e.g., response scaling and reproducibility) and validity (e.g., response specificity, generalisation to other paradigms, subjects or settings). Since emotional processes are not only the result of localised but also of widely distributed activation, a more representative model of assessment is needed that systematically relates the hierarchy of high- and low-level emotion constructs with the corresponding patterns of activity and functional connectivity of the brain.

  7. A new algorithm for spatiotemporal analysis of brain functional connectivity.

    PubMed

    Mheich, A; Hassan, M; Khalil, M; Berrou, C; Wendling, F

    2015-03-15

    Specific networks of interacting neuronal assemblies distributed within and across distinct brain regions underlie brain functions. In most cognitive tasks, these interactions are dynamic and take place at the millisecond time scale. Among neuroimaging techniques, magneto/electroencephalography - M/EEG - allows for detection of very short-duration events and offers the single opportunity to follow, in time, the dynamic properties of cognitive processes (sub-millisecond temporal resolution). In this paper, we propose a new algorithm to track the functional brain connectivity dynamics. During a picture naming task, this algorithm aims at segmenting high-resolution EEG signals (hr-EEG) into functional connectivity microstates. The proposed algorithm is based on the K-means clustering of the connectivity graphs obtained from the phase locking value (PLV) method applied on hr-EEG. Results show that the analyzed evoked responses can be divided into six clusters representing distinct networks sequentially involved during the cognitive task, from the picture presentation and recognition to the motor response. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. What is feasible with imaging human brain function and connectivity using functional magnetic resonance imaging

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    When we consider all of the methods we employ to detect brain function, from electrophysiology to optical techniques to functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), we do not really have a ‘golden technique’ that meets all of the needs for studying the brain. We have methods, each of which has significant limitations but provide often complimentary information. Clearly, there are many questions that need to be answered about fMRI, which unlike other methods, allows us to study the human brain. However, there are also extraordinary accomplishments or demonstration of the feasibility of reaching new and previously unexpected scales of function in the human brain. This article reviews some of the work we have pursued, often with extensive collaborations with other co-workers, towards understanding the underlying mechanisms of the methodology, defining its limitations, and developing solutions to advance it. No doubt, our knowledge of human brain function has vastly expanded since the introduction of fMRI. However, methods and instrumentation in this dynamic field have evolved to a state that discoveries about the human brain based on fMRI principles, together with information garnered at a much finer spatial and temporal scale through other methods, are poised to significantly accelerate in the next decade. This article is part of the themed issue ‘Interpreting BOLD: a dialogue between cognitive and cellular neuroscience’. PMID:27574313

  9. Executive control- and reward-related neural processes associated with the opportunity to engage in voluntary dishonest moral decision making.

    PubMed

    Hu, Xiaoqing; Pornpattananangkul, Narun; Nusslock, Robin

    2015-06-01

    Research has begun to examine the neurocognitive processes underlying voluntary moral decision making, which involves engaging in honest or dishonest behavior in a setting in which the individual is free to make his or her own moral decisions. Employing event-related potentials, we measured executive control-related and reward-related neural processes during an incentivized coin-guessing task in which participants had the opportunity to voluntarily engage in dishonest behavior, by overreporting their wins to maximize earnings. We report four primary findings: First, the opportunity to deceive recruited executive control processes involving conflict monitoring and conflict resolution, as evidenced by a higher N2 and a smaller P3. Second, processing the outcome of the coin flips engaged reward-related processes, as evidenced by a larger medial feedback negativity (MFN) for incorrect (loss) than for correct (win) guesses, reflecting a reward prediction error signal. Third, elevated executive control-related neural activity reflecting conflict resolution (i.e., an attenuated executive control P3) predicted a greater likelihood of engaging in overall deceptive behavior. Finally, whereas elevated reward-related neural activity (the reward P3) was associated with a greater likelihood of engaging in overall deceptive behavior, an elevated reward prediction error signal (MFN difference score) predicted increased trial-by-trial moral behavioral adjustment (i.e., a greater likelihood to overreport wins following a previous honest loss than following a previous honest win trial). Collectively, these findings suggest that both executive control- and reward-related neural processes are implicated in moral decision making.

  10. Hour-Long Nap May Boost Brain Function in Older Adults

    MedlinePlus

    ... fullstory_162923.html Hour-Long Nap May Boost Brain Function in Older Adults Linked to improved memory and ... during the day had any effects on their brain function. Nearly 60 percent of the people regularly napped ...

  11. Functional connectivity and alterations in baseline brain state in humans

    PubMed Central

    Martuzzi, Roberto; Ramani, Ramachandran; Qiu, Maolin; Rajeevan, Nallakkandi; Constable, R. Todd

    2009-01-01

    This work examines the influence of changes in baseline activity on the intrinsic functional connectivity fMRI (fc-fMRI) in humans. Baseline brain activity was altered by inducing anesthesia (sevoflurane end-tidal concentration 1%) in human volunteers and fc-fMRI maps between the pre-anesthetized and anesthetized conditions were compared across different brain networks. We particularly focused on low-level sensory areas (primary somatosensory, visual, auditory cortices), the thalamus, and pain (insula), memory (hippocampus) circuits, and the default mode network (DMN), the latter three to examine higher order brain regions. The results indicate that, while fc-fMRI patterns did not significantly differ (p<0.005; 20-voxel cluster threshold) in sensory cortex and in the DMN between the pre- and anesthetized conditions, fc-fMRI in high-order cognitive regions (i.e. memory and pain circuits) was significantly altered by anesthesia. These findings provide further evidence that fc-fMRI reflects intrinsic brain properties, while also demonstrating that 0.5 MAC sevoflurane anesthesia preferentially modulates higher-order connections. PMID:19631277

  12. Functional photoacoustic tomography for neonatal brain imaging: developments and challenges

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hariri, Ali; Tavakoli, Emytis; Adabi, Saba; Gelovani, Juri; Avanaki, Mohammad R. N.

    2017-03-01

    Transfontanelle ultrasound imaging (TFUSI) is a routine diagnostic brain imaging method in infants who are born prematurely, whose skull bones have not completely fused together and have openings between them, so-called fontanelles. Open fontanelles in neonates provide acoustic windows, allowing the ultrasound beam to freely pass through. TFUSI is used to rule out neurological complications of premature birth including subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH), intraventricular (IVH), subependimal (SEPH), subdural (SDH) or intracerebral (ICH) hemorrhages, as well as hypoxic brain injuries. TFUSI is widely used in the clinic owing to its low cost, safety, accessibility, and noninvasive nature. Nevertheless, the accuracy of TFUSI is limited. To address several limitations of current clinical imaging modalities, we develop a novel transfontanelle photoacoustic imaging (TFPAI) probe, which, for the first time, should allow for non-invasive structural and functional imaging of the infant brain. In this study, we test the feasibility of TFPAI for detection of experimentally-induced intra ventricular and Intraparenchymal hemorrhage phantoms in a sheep model with a surgically-induced cranial window which will serve as a model of neonatal fontanelle. This study is towards using the probe we develop for bedside monitoring of neonates with various disease conditions and complications affecting brain perfusion and oxygenation, including apnea, asphyxia, as well as for detection of various types of intracranial hemorrhages (SAH, IVH, SEPH, SDH, ICH).

  13. A Mapping Between Structural and Functional Brain Networks.

    PubMed

    Meier, Jil; Tewarie, Prejaas; Hillebrand, Arjan; Douw, Linda; van Dijk, Bob W; Stufflebeam, Steven M; Van Mieghem, Piet

    2016-05-01

    The relationship between structural and functional brain networks is still highly debated. Most previous studies have used a single functional imaging modality to analyze this relationship. In this work, we use multimodal data, from functional MRI, magnetoencephalography, and diffusion tensor imaging, and assume that there exists a mapping between the connectivity matrices of the resting-state functional and structural networks. We investigate this mapping employing group averaged as well as individual data. We indeed find a significantly high goodness of fit level for this structure-function mapping. Our analysis suggests that a functional connection is shaped by all walks up to the diameter in the structural network in both modality cases. When analyzing the inverse mapping, from function to structure, longer walks in the functional network also seem to possess minor influence on the structural connection strengths. Even though similar overall properties for the structure-function mapping are found for different functional modalities, our results indicate that the structure-function relationship is modality dependent.

  14. Functional magnetic resonance imaging of the brain: a quick review.

    PubMed

    Vaghela, Viratsinh; Kesavadas, Chandrasekharan; Thomas, Bejoy

    2010-01-01

    Ability to non-invasively map the hemodynamic changes occurring focally in areas of brain involved in various motor, sensory and cognitive functions by functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) has revolutionized research in neuroscience in the last two decades. This technique has already gained clinical use especially in pre-surgical evaluation of epilepsy and neurosurgical planning of resection of mass lesions adjacent to eloquent cortex. In this review we attempt to illustrate basic principles and techniques of fMRI, its applications, practical points to consider while performing and evaluating clinical fMRI and its limitations.

  15. Activated and deactivated functional brain areas in the Deqi state

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Yong; Zeng, Tongjun; Zhang, Guifeng; Li, Ganlong; Lu, Na; Lai, Xinsheng; Lu, Yangjia; Chen, Jiarong

    2012-01-01

    We compared the activities of functional regions of the brain in the Deqi versus non-Deqi state, as reported by physicians and subjects during acupuncture. Twelve healthy volunteers received sham and true needling at the Waiguan (TE5) acupoint. Real-time cerebral functional MRI showed that compared with non-sensation after sham needling, true needling activated Brodmann areas 3, 6, 8, 9, 10, 11, 13, 20, 21, 37, 39, 40, 43, and 47, the head of the caudate nucleus, the parahippocampal gyrus, thalamus and red nucleus. True needling also deactivated Brodmann areas 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 9, 10, 18, 24, 31, 40 and 46. PMID:25538761

  16. Functional neuroimaging after severe anoxic brain injury in children may reveal preserved, yet covert, cognitive function.

    PubMed

    Owen, Adrian M

    2017-10-01

    A growing body of evidence has confirmed that, after severe brain injury in adults, motoric and task-dependent factors that are essential for reliable communication, frequently interfere with an accurate assessment of cognitive status. In the current study, resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in children who have sustained an anoxic brain injury following a near drowning incident suggests a similar pattern; preserved cognition amidst severe motoric impairment that effectively precludes accurate clinical diagnosis at the bedside. Hum Brain Mapp 38:4832-4833, 2017. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  17. A Multivariate Granger Causality Concept towards Full Brain Functional Connectivity.

    PubMed

    Schmidt, Christoph; Pester, Britta; Schmid-Hertel, Nicole; Witte, Herbert; Wismüller, Axel; Leistritz, Lutz

    2016-01-01

    Detecting changes of spatially high-resolution functional connectivity patterns in the brain is crucial for improving the fundamental understanding of brain function in both health and disease, yet still poses one of the biggest challenges in computational neuroscience. Currently, classical multivariate Granger Causality analyses of directed interactions between single process components in coupled systems are commonly restricted to spatially low- dimensional data, which requires a pre-selection or aggregation of time series as a preprocessing step. In this paper we propose a new fully multivariate Granger Causality approach with embedded dimension reduction that makes it possible to obtain a representation of functional connectivity for spatially high-dimensional data. The resulting functional connectivity networks may consist of several thousand vertices and thus contain more detailed information compared to connectivity networks obtained from approaches based on particular regions of interest. Our large scale Granger Causality approach is applied to synthetic and resting state fMRI data with a focus on how well network community structure, which represents a functional segmentation of the network, is preserved. It is demonstrated that a number of different community detection algorithms, which utilize a variety of algorithmic strategies and exploit topological features differently, reveal meaningful information on the underlying network module structure.

  18. Differential Effects of Brain Disorders on Structural and Functional Connectivity.

    PubMed

    Vega-Pons, Sandro; Olivetti, Emanuele; Avesani, Paolo; Dodero, Luca; Gozzi, Alessandro; Bifone, Angelo

    2016-01-01

    Different measures of brain connectivity can be defined based on neuroimaging read-outs, including structural and functional connectivity. Neurological and psychiatric conditions are often associated with abnormal connectivity, but comparing the effects of the disease on different types of connectivity remains a challenge. In this paper, we address the problem of quantifying the relative effects of brain disease on structural and functional connectivity at a group level. Within the framework of a graph representation of connectivity, we introduce a kernel two-sample test as an effective method to assess the difference between the patients and control group. Moreover, we propose a common representation space for structural and functional connectivity networks, and a novel test statistics to quantitatively assess differential effects of the disease on different types of connectivity. We apply this approach to a dataset from BTBR mice, a murine model of Agenesis of the Corpus Callosum (ACC), a congenital disorder characterized by the absence of the main bundle of fibers connecting the two hemispheres. We used normo-callosal mice (B6) as a comparator. The application of the proposed methods to this data-set shows that the two types of connectivity can be successfully used to discriminate between BTBR and B6, meaning that both types of connectivity are affected by ACC. However, our novel test statistics shows that structural connectivity is significantly more affected than functional connectivity, consistent with the idea that functional connectivity has a robust topology that can tolerate substantial alterations in its structural connectivity substrate.

  19. Differential Effects of Brain Disorders on Structural and Functional Connectivity

    PubMed Central

    Vega-Pons, Sandro; Olivetti, Emanuele; Avesani, Paolo; Dodero, Luca; Gozzi, Alessandro; Bifone, Angelo

    2017-01-01

    Different measures of brain connectivity can be defined based on neuroimaging read-outs, including structural and functional connectivity. Neurological and psychiatric conditions are often associated with abnormal connectivity, but comparing the effects of the disease on different types of connectivity remains a challenge. In this paper, we address the problem of quantifying the relative effects of brain disease on structural and functional connectivity at a group level. Within the framework of a graph representation of connectivity, we introduce a kernel two-sample test as an effective method to assess the difference between the patients and control group. Moreover, we propose a common representation space for structural and functional connectivity networks, and a novel test statistics to quantitatively assess differential effects of the disease on different types of connectivity. We apply this approach to a dataset from BTBR mice, a murine model of Agenesis of the Corpus Callosum (ACC), a congenital disorder characterized by the absence of the main bundle of fibers connecting the two hemispheres. We used normo-callosal mice (B6) as a comparator. The application of the proposed methods to this data-set shows that the two types of connectivity can be successfully used to discriminate between BTBR and B6, meaning that both types of connectivity are affected by ACC. However, our novel test statistics shows that structural connectivity is significantly more affected than functional connectivity, consistent with the idea that functional connectivity has a robust topology that can tolerate substantial alterations in its structural connectivity substrate. PMID:28119556

  20. Hypothalamic-Pituitary Function in Brain Death: A Review.

    PubMed

    Nair-Collins, Michael; Northrup, Jesse; Olcese, James

    2016-01-01

    The Uniform Determination of Death Act (UDDA) states that an individual is dead when "all functions of the entire brain" have ceased irreversibly. However, it has been questioned whether some functions of the hypothalamus, particularly osmoregulation, can continue after the clinical diagnosis of brain death (BD). In order to learn whether parts of the hypothalamus can continue to function after the diagnosis of BD, we performed 2 separate systematic searches of the MEDLINE database, corresponding to the functions of the posterior and anterior pituitary. No meta-analysis is possible due to nonuniformity in the clinical literature. However, some modest generalizations can reasonably be drawn from a narrative review and from anatomic considerations that explain why these findings should be expected. We found evidence suggesting the preservation of hypothalamic function, including secretion of hypophysiotropic hormones, responsiveness to anterior pituitary stimulation, and osmoregulation, in a substantial proportion of patients declared dead by neurological criteria. We discuss several possible explanations for these findings. We conclude by suggesting that additional clinical research with strict inclusion criteria is necessary and further that a more nuanced and forthright public dialogue is needed, particularly since standard diagnostic practices and the UDDA may not be entirely in accord.

  1. Synchronization-based approach for detecting functional activation of brain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hong, Lei; Cai, Shi-Min; Zhang, Jie; Zhuo, Zhao; Fu, Zhong-Qian; Zhou, Pei-Ling

    2012-09-01

    In this paper, we investigate a synchronization-based, data-driven clustering approach for the analysis of functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) data, and specifically for detecting functional activation from fMRI data. We first define a new measure of similarity between all pairs of data points (i.e., time series of voxels) integrating both complete phase synchronization and amplitude correlation. These pairwise similarities are taken as the coupling between a set of Kuramoto oscillators, which in turn evolve according to a nearest-neighbor rule. As the network evolves, similar data points naturally synchronize with each other, and distinct clusters will emerge. The clustering behavior of the interaction network of the coupled oscillators, therefore, mirrors the clustering property of the original multiple time series. The clustered regions whose cross-correlation coefficients are much greater than other regions are considered as the functionally activated brain regions. The analysis of fMRI data in auditory and visual areas shows that the recognized brain functional activations are in complete correspondence with those from the general linear model of statistical parametric mapping, but with a significantly lower time complexity. We further compare our results with those from traditional K-means approach, and find that our new clustering approach can distinguish between different response patterns more accurately and efficiently than the K-means approach, and therefore more suitable in detecting functional activation from event-related experimental fMRI data.

  2. Personality Is Reflected in the Brain's Intrinsic Functional Architecture

    PubMed Central

    Adelstein, Jonathan S.; Shehzad, Zarrar; Mennes, Maarten; DeYoung, Colin G.; Zuo, Xi-Nian; Kelly, Clare; Margulies, Daniel S.; Bloomfield, Aaron; Gray, Jeremy R.; Castellanos, F. Xavier; Milham, Michael P.

    2011-01-01

    Personality describes persistent human behavioral responses to broad classes of environmental stimuli. Investigating how personality traits are reflected in the brain's functional architecture is challenging, in part due to the difficulty of designing appropriate task probes. Resting-state functional connectivity (RSFC) can detect intrinsic activation patterns without relying on any specific task. Here we use RSFC to investigate the neural correlates of the five-factor personality domains. Based on seed regions placed within two cognitive and affective ‘hubs’ in the brain—the anterior cingulate and precuneus—each domain of personality predicted RSFC with a unique pattern of brain regions. These patterns corresponded with functional subdivisions responsible for cognitive and affective processing such as motivation, empathy and future-oriented thinking. Neuroticism and Extraversion, the two most widely studied of the five constructs, predicted connectivity between seed regions and the dorsomedial prefrontal cortex and lateral paralimbic regions, respectively. These areas are associated with emotional regulation, self-evaluation and reward, consistent with the trait qualities. Personality traits were mostly associated with functional connections that were inconsistently present across participants. This suggests that although a fundamental, core functional architecture is preserved across individuals, variable connections outside of that core encompass the inter-individual differences in personality that motivate diverse responses. PMID:22140453

  3. A Multivariate Granger Causality Concept towards Full Brain Functional Connectivity

    PubMed Central

    Schmid-Hertel, Nicole; Witte, Herbert; Wismüller, Axel; Leistritz, Lutz

    2016-01-01

    Detecting changes of spatially high-resolution functional connectivity patterns in the brain is crucial for improving the fundamental understanding of brain function in both health and disease, yet still poses one of the biggest challenges in computational neuroscience. Currently, classical multivariate Granger Causality analyses of directed interactions between single process components in coupled systems are commonly restricted to spatially low- dimensional data, which requires a pre-selection or aggregation of time series as a preprocessing step. In this paper we propose a new fully multivariate Granger Causality approach with embedded dimension reduction that makes it possible to obtain a representation of functional connectivity for spatially high-dimensional data. The resulting functional connectivity networks may consist of several thousand vertices and thus contain more detailed information compared to connectivity networks obtained from approaches based on particular regions of interest. Our large scale Granger Causality approach is applied to synthetic and resting state fMRI data with a focus on how well network community structure, which represents a functional segmentation of the network, is preserved. It is demonstrated that a number of different community detection algorithms, which utilize a variety of algorithmic strategies and exploit topological features differently, reveal meaningful information on the underlying network module structure. PMID:27064897

  4. Abdominal Pain, the Adolescent and Altered Brain Structure and Function

    PubMed Central

    Becerra, Lino; Heinz, Nicole; Ludwick, Allison; Rasooly, Tali; Wu, Rina; Johnson, Adriana; Schechter, Neil L.; Borsook, David; Nurko, Samuel

    2016-01-01

    Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a functional gastrointestinal (GI) disorder of unknown etiology. Although relatively common in children, how this condition affects brain structure and function in a pediatric population remains unclear. Here, we investigate brain changes in adolescents with IBS and healthy controls. Imaging was performed with a Siemens 3 Tesla Trio Tim MRI scanner equipped with a 32-channel head coil. A high-resolution T1-weighted anatomical scan was acquired followed by a T2-weighted functional scan. We used a surface-based morphometric approach along with a seed-based resting-state functional connectivity (RS-FC) analysis to determine if groups differed in cortical thickness and whether areas showing structural differences also showed abnormal RS-FC patterns. Patients completed the Abdominal Pain Index and the GI Module of the Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory to assess abdominal pain severity and impact of GI symptoms on health-related quality of life (HRQOL). Disease duration and pain intensity were also assessed. Pediatric IBS patients, relative to controls, showed cortical thickening in the posterior cingulate (PCC), whereas cortical thinning in posterior parietal and prefrontal areas were found, including the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC). In patients, abdominal pain severity was related to cortical thickening in the intra-abdominal area of the primary somatosensory cortex (SI), whereas HRQOL was associated with insular cortical thinning. Disease severity measures correlated with cortical thickness in bilateral DLPFC and orbitofrontal cortex. Patients also showed reduced anti-correlations between PCC and DLPFC compared to controls, a finding that may reflect aberrant connectivity between default mode and cognitive control networks. We are the first to demonstrate concomitant structural and functional brain changes associated with abdominal pain severity, HRQOL related to GI-specific symptoms, and disease-specific measures in

  5. Abdominal Pain, the Adolescent and Altered Brain Structure and Function.

    PubMed

    Hubbard, Catherine S; Becerra, Lino; Heinz, Nicole; Ludwick, Allison; Rasooly, Tali; Wu, Rina; Johnson, Adriana; Schechter, Neil L; Borsook, David; Nurko, Samuel

    2016-01-01

    Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a functional gastrointestinal (GI) disorder of unknown etiology. Although relatively common in children, how this condition affects brain structure and function in a pediatric population remains unclear. Here, we investigate brain changes in adolescents with IBS and healthy controls. Imaging was performed with a Siemens 3 Tesla Trio Tim MRI scanner equipped with a 32-channel head coil. A high-resolution T1-weighted anatomical scan was acquired followed by a T2-weighted functional scan. We used a surface-based morphometric approach along with a seed-based resting-state functional connectivity (RS-FC) analysis to determine if groups differed in cortical thickness and whether areas showing structural differences also showed abnormal RS-FC patterns. Patients completed the Abdominal Pain Index and the GI Module of the Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory to assess abdominal pain severity and impact of GI symptoms on health-related quality of life (HRQOL). Disease duration and pain intensity were also assessed. Pediatric IBS patients, relative to controls, showed cortical thickening in the posterior cingulate (PCC), whereas cortical thinning in posterior parietal and prefrontal areas were found, including the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC). In patients, abdominal pain severity was related to cortical thickening in the intra-abdominal area of the primary somatosensory cortex (SI), whereas HRQOL was associated with insular cortical thinning. Disease severity measures correlated with cortical thickness in bilateral DLPFC and orbitofrontal cortex. Patients also showed reduced anti-correlations between PCC and DLPFC compared to controls, a finding that may reflect aberrant connectivity between default mode and cognitive control networks. We are the first to demonstrate concomitant structural and functional brain changes associated with abdominal pain severity, HRQOL related to GI-specific symptoms, and disease-specific measures in

  6. Modularity and Self-Organized Functional Architectures in the Brain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iyer, Laxmi; Minai, Ali A.; Doboli, Simona; Brown, Vincent R.

    It is generally believed that cognition involves the self-organization of coherent dy- namic functional networks across several brain regions in response to incoming stimulus and internal modulation. These context-dependent networks arise continually from the spatiotemporally multi-scale structural substrate of the brain configured by evolution, development and previous experience, persisting for 100-200 ms and generating re- sponses such as imagery, recall and motor action. In the current paper, we show that a system of interacting modular attractor networks can use a selective mechanism for assembling functional networks from the modular substrate. We use the approach to develop a model of idea-generation in the brain. Ideas are modeled as combinations of concepts organized in a recurrent network that reflects previous associations between them. The dynamics of this network, resulting in the transient co-activation of concept groups, is seen as a search through the space of ideas, and attractor dynamics is used to "shape" this search. The process is required to encompass both rapid retrieval of old ideas in familiar contexts and efficient search for novel ones in unfamiliar situations (or during brainstorming). The inclusion of an adaptive modulatory mechanism allows the network to balance the competing requirements of exploiting previous learning and exploring new possibilities as needed in different contexts.

  7. Heritability of human brain functioning as assessed by electroencephalography

    SciTech Connect

    Beijsterveldt, C.E.M. van; Geus, E.J.C. de; Boomsma, D.I.

    1996-03-01

    To study the genetic and environmental contributions to individual differences in CNS functioning, the electroencephalogram (EEG) was measured in 213 twin pairs age 16 years. EEG was measured in 91 MZ and 122 DZ twins. To quantify sex differences in the genetic architecture, EEG was measured in female and male same-sex twins and in opposite-sex twins. EEG was recorded on 14 scalp positions during quiet resting with eyes closed. Spectral powers were calculated for four frequency bands: delta, theta, alpha, and beta. Twin correlations pointed toward high genetic influences for all these powers and scalp locations. Model fitting confirmed these findings; the largest part of the variance of the EEG is explained by additive genetic factors. The averaged heritabilities for the delta, theta, alpha, and beta frequencies was 76%, 89%, 89%, and 86%, respectively. Multivariate analyses suggested that the same genes for EEG alpha rhythm were expressed in different brain areas in the left and right hemisphere. This study shows that brain functioning, as indexed by rhythmic brain-electrical activity, is one of the most heritable characteristics in humans. 44 refs., 5 figs., 4 tabs.

  8. Lateralization of Cognitive Functions in Aphasia after Right Brain Damage

    PubMed Central

    Ha, Ji-Wan; Hwang, Yu Mi; Sim, Hyunsub

    2012-01-01

    Purpose The lateralization of cognitive functions in crossed aphasia in dextrals (CAD) has been explored and compared mainly with cases of aphasia with left hemisphere damage. However, comparing the neuropsychological aspects of CAD and aphasia after right brain damage in left-handers (ARL) could potentially provide more insights into the effect of a shift in the laterality of handedness or language on other cognitive organization. Thus, this case study compared two cases of CAD and one case of ARL. Materials and Methods The following neuropsychological measures were obtained from three aphasic patients with right brain damage (two cases of CAD and one case of ARL); language, oral and limb praxis, and nonverbal cognitive functions (visuospatial neglect and visuospatial construction). Results All three patients showed impaired visuoconstructional abilities, whereas each patient showed a different level of performances for oral and limb praxis, and visuospatial neglect. Conclusion Based on the analysis of these three aphasic patients' performances, we highlighted the lateralization of language, handedness, oral and limb praxis, visuospatial neglect and visuospatial constructive ability in aphasic patients with right brain damage. PMID:22476990

  9. Socioeconomic status and functional brain development - associations in early infancy.

    PubMed

    Tomalski, Przemyslaw; Moore, Derek G; Ribeiro, Helena; Axelsson, Emma L; Murphy, Elizabeth; Karmiloff-Smith, Annette; Johnson, Mark H; Kushnerenko, Elena

    2013-09-01

    Socioeconomic status (SES) impacts on both structural and functional brain development in childhood, but how early its effects can be demonstrated is unknown. In this study we measured resting baseline EEG activity in the gamma frequency range in awake 6-9-month-olds from areas of East London with high socioeconomic deprivation. Between-subject comparisons of infants from low- and high-income families revealed significantly lower frontal gamma power in infants from low-income homes. Similar power differences were found when comparing infants according to maternal occupation, with lower occupational status groups yielding lower power. Infant sleep, maternal education, length of gestation, and birth weight, as well as smoke exposure and bilingualism, did not explain these differences. Our results show that the effects of socioeconomic disparities on brain activity can already be detected in early infancy, potentially pointing to very early risk for language and attention difficulties. This is the first study to reveal region-selective differences in functional brain development associated with early infancy in low-income families.

  10. Automated Talairach atlas labels for functional brain mapping.

    PubMed

    Lancaster, J L; Woldorff, M G; Parsons, L M; Liotti, M; Freitas, C S; Rainey, L; Kochunov, P V; Nickerson, D; Mikiten, S A; Fox, P T

    2000-07-01

    An automated coordinate-based system to retrieve brain labels from the 1988 Talairach Atlas, called the Talairach Daemon (TD), was previously introduced [Lancaster et al., 1997]. In the present study, the TD system and its 3-D database of labels for the 1988 Talairach atlas were tested for labeling of functional activation foci. TD system labels were compared with author-designated labels of activation coordinates from over 250 published functional brain-mapping studies and with manual atlas-derived labels from an expert group using a subset of these activation coordinates. Automated labeling by the TD system compared well with authors' labels, with a 70% or greater label match averaged over all locations. Author-label matching improved to greater than 90% within a search range of +/-5 mm for most sites. An adaptive grey matter (GM) range-search utility was evaluated using individual activations from the M1 mouth region (30 subjects, 52 sites). It provided an 87% label match to Brodmann area labels (BA 4 & BA 6) within a search range of +/-5 mm. Using the adaptive GM range search, the TD system's overall match with authors' labels (90%) was better than that of the expert group (80%). When used in concert with authors' deeper knowledge of an experiment, the TD system provides consistent and comprehensive labels for brain activation foci. Additional suggested applications of the TD system include interactive labeling, anatomical grouping of activation foci, lesion-deficit analysis, and neuroanatomy education.

  11. Kappa-opioid receptor signaling and brain reward function

    PubMed Central

    Bruijnzeel, Adrie W.

    2009-01-01

    The dynorphin-like peptides have profound effects on the state of the brain reward system and human and animal behavior. The dynorphin-like peptides affect locomotor activity, food intake, sexual behavior, anxiety-like behavior, and drug intake. Stimulation of kappa-opioid receptors, the endogenous receptor for the dynorphin-like peptides, inhibits dopamine release in the striatum (nucleus accumbens and caudate putamen) and induces a negative mood state in humans and animals. The administration of drugs of abuse increases the release of dopamine in the striatum and mediates the concomitant release of dynorphin-like peptides in this brain region. The reviewed studies suggest that chronic drug intake leads to an upregulation of the brain dynorphin system in the striatum and in particular in the dorsal part of the striatum/caudate putamen. This might inhibit drug-induced dopamine release and provide protection against the neurotoxic effects of high dopamine levels. After the discontinuation of chronic drug intake these neuroadaptations remain unopposed which has been suggested to contribute to the negative emotional state associated with drug withdrawal and increased drug intake. Kappa-opioid receptor agonists have also been shown to inhibit calcium channels. Calcium channel inhibitors have antidepressant-like effects and inhibit the release of norepinephrine. This might explain that in some studies kappa-opioid receptor agonists attenuate nicotine and opioid withdrawal symptomatology. A better understanding of the role of dynorphins in the regulation of brain reward function might contribute to the development of novel treatments for mood disorders and other disorders that stem from a dysregulation of the brain reward system. PMID:19804796

  12. Self-Affirmation Activates the Ventral Striatum: A Possible Reward-Related Mechanism for Self-Affirmation.

    PubMed

    Dutcher, Janine M; Creswell, J David; Pacilio, Laura E; Harris, Peter R; Klein, William M P; Levine, John M; Bower, Julienne E; Muscatell, Keely A; Eisenberger, Naomi I

    2016-04-01

    Self-affirmation (reflecting on important personal values) has been shown to have a range of positive effects; however, the neural basis of self-affirmation is not known. Building on studies showing that thinking about self-preferences activates neural reward pathways, we hypothesized that self-affirmation would activate brain reward circuitry during functional MRI (fMRI) studies. In Study 1, with college students, making judgments about important personal values during self-affirmation activated neural reward regions (i.e., ventral striatum), whereas making preference judgments that were not self-relevant did not. Study 2 replicated these results in a community sample, again showing that self-affirmation activated the ventral striatum. These are among the first fMRI studies to identify neural processes during self-affirmation. The findings extend theory by showing that self-affirmation may be rewarding and may provide a first step toward identifying a neural mechanism by which self-affirmation may produce a wide range of beneficial effects. © The Author(s) 2016.

  13. The study of brain functional connectivity in Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Gao, Lin-Lin; Wu, Tao

    2016-01-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disorder primarily affecting the aging population. The neurophysiological mechanisms underlying parkinsonian symptoms remain unclear. PD affects extensive neural networks and a more thorough understanding of network disruption will help bridge the gap between known pathological changes and observed clinical presentations in PD. Development of neuroimaging techniques, especially functional magnetic resonance imaging, allows for detection of the functional connectivity of neural networks in patients with PD. This review aims to provide an overview of current research involving functional network disruption in PD relating to motor and non-motor symptoms. Investigations into functional network connectivity will further our understanding of the mechanisms underlying the effectiveness of clinical interventions, such as levodopa and deep brain stimulation treatment. In addition, identification of PD-specific neural network patterns has the potential to aid in the development of a definitive diagnosis of PD.

  14. IMAGING OF BRAIN FUNCTION BASED ON THE ANALYSIS OF FUNCTIONAL CONNECTIVITY - IMAGING ANALYSIS OF BRAIN FUNCTION BY FMRI AFTER ACUPUNCTURE AT LR3 IN HEALTHY INDIVIDUALS.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Yu; Wang, Yuying; Lan, Yujun; Qu, Xiaodong; Lin, Kelin; Zhang, Jiping; Qu, Shanshan; Wang, Yanjie; Tang, Chunzhi; Huang, Yong

    2016-01-01

    This Study observed the relevant brain areas activated by acupuncture at the Taichong acupoint (LR3) and analyzed the functional connectivity among brain areas using resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to explore the acupoint specificity of the Taichong acupoint. A total of 45 healthy subjects were randomly divided into the Taichong (LR3) group, sham acupuncture group and sham acupoint group. Subjects received resting state fMRI before acupuncture, after true (sham) acupuncture in each group. Analysis of changes in connectivity among the brain areas was performed using the brain functional connectivity method. The right cerebrum temporal lobe was selected as the seed point to analyze the functional connectivity. It had a functional connectivity with right cerebrum superior frontal gyrus, limbic lobe cingulate gyrus and left cerebrum inferior temporal gyrus (BA 37), inferior parietal lobule compared by before vs. after acupuncture at LR3, and right cerebrum sub-lobar insula and left cerebrum middle frontal gyrus, medial frontal gyrus compared by true vs. sham acupuncture at LR3, and right cerebrum occipital lobe cuneus, occipital lobe sub-gyral, parietal lobe precuneus and left cerebellum anterior lobe culmen by acupuncture at LR3 vs. sham acupoint. Acupuncture at LR3 mainly specifically activated the brain functional network that participates in visual function, associative function, and emotion cognition, which are similar to the features on LR3 in tradition Chinese medicine. These brain areas constituted a neural network structure with specific functions that had specific reference values for the interpretation of the acupoint specificity of the Taichong acupoint.

  15. Evidence for Functional Networks within the Human Brain's White Matter.

    PubMed

    Peer, Michael; Nitzan, Mor; Bick, Atira S; Levin, Netta; Arzy, Shahar

    2017-07-05

    brain. However, most fMRI studies ignored a major part of the brain, the white-matter, discarding signals from it as arising from noise. Here we use resting-state fMRI data from 176 subjects to show that signals from the human white-matter contain meaningful information. We identify 12 functional networks composed of interacting long-distance white-matter tracts. Moreover, we show that these networks are highly correlated to resting-state gray-matter networks, highlighting their functional role. Our findings enable reinterpretation of many existing fMRI datasets, and suggest a new way to explore the white-matter role in cognition and its disturbances in neuropsychiatric disorders. Copyright © 2017 the authors 0270-6474/17/376394-14$15.00/0.

  16. Effects of Deep Brain Stimulation on Autonomic Function

    PubMed Central

    Basiago, Adam; Binder, Devin K.

    2016-01-01

    Over the course of the development of deep brain stimulation (DBS) into a well-established therapy for Parkinson’s disease, essential tremor, and dystonia, its utility as a potential treatment for autonomic dysfunction has emerged. Dysfunction of autonomic processes is common in neurological diseases. Depending on the specific target in the brain, DBS has been shown to raise or lower blood pressure, normalize the baroreflex, to alter the caliber of bronchioles, and eliminate hyperhidrosis, all through modulation of the sympathetic nervous system. It has also been shown to improve cortical control of the bladder, directly induce or inhibit the micturition reflex, and to improve deglutition and gastric emptying. In this review, we will attempt to summarize the relevant available studies describing these effects of DBS on autonomic function, which vary greatly in character and magnitude with respect to stimulation target. PMID:27537920

  17. Microstructural and functional connectivity in the developing preterm brain.

    PubMed

    Lubsen, Julia; Vohr, Betty; Myers, Eliza; Hampson, Michelle; Lacadie, Cheryl; Schneider, Karen C; Katz, Karol H; Constable, R Todd; Ment, Laura R

    2011-02-01

    Prematurely born children are at increased risk for cognitive deficits, but the neurobiological basis of these findings remains poorly understood. Because variations in neural circuitry may influence performance on cognitive tasks, recent investigations have explored the impact of preterm birth on connectivity in the developing brain. Diffusion tensor imaging studies demonstrate widespread alterations in fractional anisotropy, a measure of axonal integrity and microstructural connectivity, throughout the developing preterm brain. Functional connectivity studies report that preterm neonates, children and adolescents exhibit alterations in both resting state and task-based connectivity when compared with term control subjects. Taken together, these data suggest that neurodevelopmental impairment following preterm birth may represent a disease of neural connectivity.

  18. A propositional representation model of anatomical and functional brain data.

    PubMed

    Maturana, Pablo; Batrancourt, Bénédicte

    2011-01-01

    Networks can represent a large number of systems. Recent advances in the domain of networks have been transferred to the field of neuroscience. For example, the graph model has been used in neuroscience research as a methodological tool to examine brain networks organization, topology and complex dynamics, as well as a framework to test the structure-function hypothesis using neuroimaging data. In the current work we propose a graph-theoretical framework to represent anatomical, functional and neuropsychological assessment instruments information. On the one hand, interrelationships between anatomic elements constitute an anatomical graph. On the other hand, a functional graph contains several cognitive functions and their more elementary cognitive processes. Finally, the neuropsychological assessment instruments graph includes several neuropsychological tests and scales linked with their different sub-tests and variables. The two last graphs are connected by relations of type "explore" linking a particular instrument with the cognitive function it explores. We applied this framework to a sample of patients with focal brain damage. Each patient was related to: (i) the cerebral entities injured (assessed with structural neuroimaging data) and (ii) the neusopsychological assessment tests carried out (weight by performance). Our model offers a suitable platform to visualize patients' relevant information, facilitating the representation, standardization and sharing of clinical data. At the same time, the integration of a large number of patients in this framework will make possible to explore relations between anatomy (injured entities) and function (performance in different tests assessing different cognitive functions) and the use of neurocomputational tools for graph analysis may help diagnostic and contribute to the comprehension of neural bases of cognitive functions.

  19. Disrupted Brain Functional Network Architecture in Chronic Tinnitus Patients

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Yu-Chen; Feng, Yuan; Xu, Jin-Jing; Mao, Cun-Nan; Xia, Wenqing; Ren, Jun; Yin, Xindao

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: Resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies have demonstrated the disruptions of multiple brain networks in tinnitus patients. Nonetheless, several studies found no differences in network processing between tinnitus patients and healthy controls (HCs). Its neural bases are poorly understood. To identify aberrant brain network architecture involved in chronic tinnitus, we compared the resting-state fMRI (rs-fMRI) patterns of tinnitus patients and HCs. Materials and Methods: Chronic tinnitus patients (n = 24) with normal hearing thresholds and age-, sex-, education- and hearing threshold-matched HCs (n = 22) participated in the current study and underwent the rs-fMRI scanning. We used degree centrality (DC) to investigate functional connectivity (FC) strength of the whole-brain network and Granger causality to analyze effective connectivity in order to explore directional aspects involved in tinnitus. Results: Compared to HCs, we found significantly increased network centrality in bilateral superior frontal gyrus (SFG). Unidirectionally, the left SFG revealed increased effective connectivity to the left middle orbitofrontal cortex (OFC), left posterior lobe of cerebellum (PLC), left postcentral gyrus, and right middle occipital gyrus (MOG) while the right SFG exhibited enhanced effective connectivity to the right supplementary motor area (SMA). In addition, the effective connectivity from the bilateral SFG to the OFC and SMA showed positive correlations with tinnitus distress. Conclusions: Rs-fMRI provides a new and novel method for identifying aberrant brain network architecture. Chronic tinnitus patients have disrupted FC strength and causal connectivity mostly in non-auditory regions, especially the prefrontal cortex (PFC). The current findings will provide a new perspective for understanding the neuropathophysiological mechanisms in chronic tinnitus. PMID:27458377

  20. Imaging structural and functional brain networks in temporal lobe epilepsy

    PubMed Central

    Bernhardt, Boris C.; Hong, SeokJun; Bernasconi, Andrea; Bernasconi, Neda

    2013-01-01

    Early imaging studies in temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) focused on the search for mesial temporal sclerosis, as its surgical removal results in clinically meaningful improvement in about 70% of patients. Nevertheless, a considerable subgroup of patients continues to suffer from post-operative seizures. Although the reasons for surgical failure are not fully understood, electrophysiological and imaging data suggest that anomalies extending beyond the temporal lobe may have negative impact on outcome. This hypothesis has revived the concept of human epilepsy as a disorder of distributed brain networks. Recent methodological advances in non-invasive neuroimaging have led to quantify structural and functional networks in vivo. While structural networks can be inferred from diffusion MRI tractography and inter-regional covariance patterns of structural measures such as cortical thickness, functional connectivity is generally computed based on statistical dependencies of neurophysiological time-series, measured through functional MRI or electroencephalographic techniques. This review considers the application of advanced analytical methods in structural and functional connectivity analyses in TLE. We will specifically highlight findings from graph-theoretical analysis that allow assessing the topological organization of brain networks. These studies have provided compelling evidence that TLE is a system disorder with profound alterations in local and distributed networks. In addition, there is emerging evidence for the utility of network properties as clinical diagnostic markers. Nowadays, a network perspective is considered to be essential to the understanding of the development, progression, and management of epilepsy. PMID:24098281

  1. Effects of exercise on brain function: role of free radicals.

    PubMed

    Radak, Zsolt; Kumagai, Shuzo; Taylor, Albert W; Naito, Hisashi; Goto, Sataro

    2007-10-01

    Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are continuously generated during aerobic metabolism. Certain levels of ROS, which could be dependent on the type of cell, cell age, history of ROS exposure, etc., could facilitate specific cell functions. Indeed, ROS stimulate a number of stress responses and activate gene expression for a wide range of proteins. It is well known that increased levels of ROS are involved in the aging process and the pathogenesis of a number of neurodegenerative diseases. Because of the enhanced sensitivity of the central nervous system to ROS, it is especially important to maintain the normal redox state in different types of neuro cells. In the last decade it became clear that regular exercise beneficially affects brain function as well, and can play an important preventive and therapeutic role in stroke and in Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases. The effects of exercise appear to be very complex and could include neurogenesis via neurotrophic factors, increased capillarization, decreased oxidative damage, and increased proteolytic degradation by proteasome and neprilysin. Data from our and other laboratories indicate that exercise-induced modulation of ROS levels plays a role in the protein content and expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor, tyrosine recepetor kinase B, and cAMP response element binding protein, resulting in better function and increased neurogenesis. The enhanced activities of proteasome and neprilysin result in decreased accumulation of carbonyls and amyloid beta-proteins, as well as improved memory. It appears that exercise-induced modulation of the redox state is an important means by which exercise benefits brain function, increases the resistance against oxidative stress, and facilitates recovery from oxidative stress.

  2. Brain functional connectivity network breakdown and restoration in blindness.

    PubMed

    Bola, Michał; Gall, Carolin; Moewes, Christian; Fedorov, Anton; Hinrichs, Hermann; Sabel, Bernhard A

    2014-08-05

    To characterize brain functional connectivity in subjects with prechiasmatic visual system damage and relate functional connectivity features to extent of vision loss. In this case-control study, resting-state, eyes-closed EEG activity was recorded in patients with partial optic nerve damage (n = 15) and uninjured controls (n = 13). We analyzed power density and functional connectivity (coherence, Granger causality), the latter as (1) between-areal coupling strength and (2) individually thresholded binary graphs. Functional connectivity was then modulated by noninvasive repetitive transorbital alternating current stimulation (rtACS; 10 days, 40 minutes daily; n = 7; sham, n = 8) to study how this would affect connectivity networks and perception. Patients exhibited lower spectral power (p = 0.005), decreased short- (p = 0.015) and long-range (p = 0.033) coherence, and less densely clustered coherence networks (p = 0.025) in the high-alpha frequency band (11-13 Hz). rtACS strengthened short- (p = 0.003) and long-range (p = 0.032) alpha coherence and this was correlated with improved detection abilities (r = 0.57, p = 0.035) and processing speed (r = 0.56, p = 0.049), respectively. Vision loss in the blind is caused not only by primary tissue damage but also by a breakdown of synchronization in brain networks. Because visual field improvements are associated with resynchronization of alpha band coherence, brain connectivity is a key component in partial blindness and in restoration of vision. © 2014 American Academy of Neurology.

  3. Age-Related Difference in Functional Brain Connectivity of Mastication

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Chia-shu; Wu, Ching-yi; Wu, Shih-yun; Lin, Hsiao-Han; Cheng, Dong-hui; Lo, Wen-liang

    2017-01-01

    The age-related decline in motor function is associated with changes in intrinsic brain signatures. Here, we investigated the functional connectivity (FC) associated with masticatory performance, a clinical index evaluating general masticatory function. Twenty-six older adults (OA) and 26 younger (YA) healthy adults were recruited and assessed using the masticatory performance index (MPI) and resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI). We analyzed the rs-fMRI FC network related to mastication, which was constructed based on 12 bilateral mastication-related brain regions according to the literature. For the OA and the YA group, we identified the mastication-related hubs, i.e., the nodes for which the degree centrality (DC) was positively correlated with the MPI. For each pair of nodes, we identified the inter-nodal link for which the FC was positively correlated with the MPI. The network analysis revealed that, in the YA group, the FC between the sensorimotor cortex, the thalamus (THA) and the cerebellum was positively correlated with the MPI. Consistently, the cerebellum nodes were defined as the mastication-related hubs. In contrast, in the OA group, we found a sparser connection within the sensorimotor regions and cerebellum and a denser connection across distributed regions, including the FC between the superior parietal lobe (SPL), the anterior insula (aINS) and the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex (dACC). Compared to the YA group, the network of the OA group also comprised more mastication-related hubs, which were spatially distributed outside the sensorimotor regions, including the right SPL, the right aINS, and the bilateral dACC. In general, the findings supported the hypothesis that in OA, higher masticatory performance is associated with a widespread pattern of mastication-related hubs. Such a widespread engagement of multiple brain regions associated with the MPI may reflect an increased demand in sensorimotor integration, attentional

  4. Neuropsychologic and functional outcome after complicated mild traumatic brain injury.

    PubMed

    Kashluba, Shauna; Hanks, Robin A; Casey, Joseph E; Millis, Scott R

    2008-05-01

    To investigate the extent to which neuropsychologic and functional outcome after complicated mild traumatic brain injury (TBI) parallels that of moderate TBI recovery. A longitudinal study comparing neuropsychologic and functional s