Functional Connectivity of Default Mode Network Components: Correlation, Anticorrelation, and Causality

Lucina Q. Uddin, A. M.Clare Kelly, Bharat B. Biswal, F. Xavier Castellanos, Michael P. Milham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

644 Scopus citations

Abstract

The default mode network (DMN), based in ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC) and posterior cingulate cortex (PCC), exhibits higher metabolic activity at rest than during performance of externally oriented cognitive tasks. Recent studies have suggested that competitive relationships between the DMN and various task-positive networks involved in task performance are intrinsically represented in the brain in the form of strong negative correlations (anticorrelations) between spontaneous fluctuations in these networks. Most neuroimaging studies characterize the DMN as a homogenous network, thus few have examined the differential contributions of DMN components to such competitive relationships. Here, we examined functional differentiation within the DMN, with an emphasis on understanding competitive relationships between this and other networks. We used a seed correlation approach on resting-state data to assess differences in functional connectivity between these two regions and their anticorrelated networks. While the positively correlated networks for the vmPFC and PCC seeds largely overlapped, the anticorrelated networks for each showed striking differences. Activity in vmPFC negatively predicted activity in parietal visual spatial and temporal attention networks, whereas activity in PCC negatively predicted activity in prefrontal-based motor control circuits. Granger causality analyses suggest that vmPFC and PCC exert greater influence on their anticorrelated networks than the other way around, suggesting that these two default mode nodes may directly modulate activity in task-positive networks. Thus, the two major nodes comprising the DMN are differentiated with respect to the specific brain systems with which they interact, suggesting greater heterogeneity within this network than is commonly appreciated.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)625-637
Number of pages13
JournalHuman Brain Mapping
Volume30
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2009
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Attention
  • Effective connectivity
  • Granger causality
  • Posterior cingulate
  • Precuneus
  • Resting state network
  • Self
  • Social cognition
  • Ventromedial prefrontal cortex
  • fMRI

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anatomy
  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology

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