Functional topography of the thalamocortical system in human
- 1.4k Downloads
Various studies have indicated that the thalamus is involved in controlling both cortico-cortical information flow and cortical communication with the rest of the brain. Detailed anatomy and functional connectivity patterns of the thalamocortical system are essential to understanding the cortical organization and pathophysiology of a wide range of thalamus-related neurological and neuropsychiatric diseases. The current study used resting-state fMRI to investigate the topography of the human thalamocortical system from a functional perspective. The thalamus-related cortical networks were identified by performing independent component analysis on voxel-based thalamic functional connectivity maps across a large group of subjects. The resulting functional brain networks were very similar to well-established resting-state network maps. Using these brain network components in a spatial regression model with each thalamic voxel’s functional connectivity map, we localized the thalamic subdivisions related to each brain network. For instance, the medial dorsal nucleus was shown to be associated with the default mode, the bilateral executive, the medial visual networks; and the pulvinar nucleus was involved in both the dorsal attention and the visual networks. These results revealed that a single nucleus may have functional connections with multiple cortical regions or even multiple functional networks, and may be potentially related to the function of mediation or modulation of multiple cortical networks. This observed organization of thalamocortical system provided a reference for studying the functions of thalamic sub-regions. The importance of intrinsic connectivity-based mapping of the thalamocortical relationship is discussed, as well as the applicability of the approach for future studies.
KeywordsfMRI Thalamus Resting state
This research was supported by NIH 5R01 AG032088 (BBB), DA038895 (BBB), EB000215 (JSH).
- Behrens TEJ, Johansen-Berg H, Woolrich MW, Smith SM, Wheeler-Kingshott CAM, Boulby PA, Barker GJ, Sillery EL, Sheehan K, Ciccarelli O, Thompson AJ, Brady JM, Matthews PM (2003) Non-invasive mapping of connections between human thalamus and cortex using diffusion imaging. Nat Neurosci 6:750–757PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Biswal BB, Mennes M, Zuo X-N, Gohel S, Kelly C, Smith SM, Beckmann CF, Adelstein JS, Buckner RL, Colcombe S, Dogonowski A-M, Ernst M, Fair D, Hampson M, Hoptman MJ, Hyde JS, Kiviniemi VJ, Kotter R, Li S-J, Lin C-P, Lowe MJ, Mackay C, Madden DJ, Madsen KH, Margulies DS, Mayberg HS, McMahon K, Monk CS, Mostofsky SH, Nagel BJ, Pekar JJ, Peltier SJ, Petersen SE, Riedl V, Rombouts SARB, Rypma B, Schlaggar BL, Schmidt S, Seidler RD, Siegle GJ, Sorg C, Teng G-J, Veijola J, Villringer A, Walter M, Wang L, Weng X-C, Whitfield-Gabrieli S, Williamson P, Windischberger C, Zang Y-F, Zhang H-Y, Castellanos FX, Milham MP (2010) Toward discovery science of human brain function. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 107:4734–4739PubMedPubMedCentralCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Buckner RL, Snyder AZ, Shannon BJ, LaRossa G, Sachs R, Fotenos AF, Sheline YI, Klunk WE, Mathis CA, Morris JC, Mintun MA (2005) Molecular, structural, and functional characterization of Alzheimer’s disease: evidence for a relationship between default activity, amyloid, and memory. J Neurosci 25:7709–7717PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Eckert U, Metzger CD, Buchmann JE, Kaufmann J, Osoba A, Li M, Safron A, Liao W, Steiner J, Bogerts B, Walter M (2012) Preferential networks of the mediodorsal nucleus and centromedian-parafascicular complex of the thalamus—a DTI tractography study. Hum Brain Mapp 33:2627–2637PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Greicius MD, Flores BH, Menon V, Glover GH, Solvason HB, Kenna H, Reiss AL, Schatzberg AF (2007) Resting-state functional connectivity in major depression: abnormally increased contributions from subgenual cingulate cortex and thalamus. Biol Psychiatry 62:429–437PubMedPubMedCentralCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Jones EG (2007) The thalamus, 1st edn. Cambridge university press, CambridgeGoogle Scholar
- Li C, Chen K, Han H, Chui D, Wu J (2012) An FMRI study of the neural systems involved in visually cued auditory top-down spatial and temporal attention. PLoS One 7(11):e49948Google Scholar
- Metzger CD, Eckert U, Steiner J, Sartorius A, Buchmann JE, Stadler J, Tempelmann C, Speck O, Bogerts B, Abler B, Walter M (2010) High field FMRI reveals thalamocortical integration of segregated cognitive and emotional processing in mediodorsal and intralaminar thalamic nuclei. Front Neuroanat 4:138PubMedPubMedCentralCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Nieuwenhuys R, Voogd J, van Huijzen C (2007) The human central nervous system: a synopsis and atlas. 4th edn. Springer Science & Business MediaGoogle Scholar
- Yeo BT, Krienen FM, Sepulcre J, Sabuncu MR, Lashkari D, Hollinshead M, Roffman JL, Smoller JW, Zollei L, Polimeni JR, Fischl B, Liu H, Buckner RL (2011) The organization of the human cerebral cortex estimated by intrinsic functional connectivity. J Neurophysiol 106:1125–1165PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar