Neuronal variability patterns promote the formation and organization of neural circuits. Macroscale similarities in regional variability patterns may therefore be linked to the strength and topography of inter-regional functional connections. To assess this relationship, we used multi-echo resting-state fMRI and investigated macroscale connectivity-variability associations in 154 adult humans (86 women; mean age = 22yrs). We computed inter-regional measures of moment-to-moment BOLD signal variability and related them to inter-regional functional connectivity. Region pairs that showed stronger functional connectivity also showed similar BOLD signal variability patterns, independent of inter-regional distance and structural similarity. Connectivity-variability associations were predominant within all networks and followed a hierarchical spatial organization that separated sensory, motor and attention systems from limbic, default and frontoparietal control association networks. Results were replicated in a second held-out fMRI run. These findings suggest that macroscale BOLD signal variability is an organizational feature of large-scale functional networks, and shared inter-regional BOLD signal variability may underlie macroscale brain network dynamics.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cognitive Neuroscience