Computational Neuroscience

Volume 38 of the series Springer Optimization and Its Applications pp 31-42


Investigating Functional Cooperation in the Human Brain Using Simple Graph-Theoretic Methods

  • Michael L. AndersonAffiliated withDepartment of Psychology, Franklin and Marshall CollegeInstitute for Advanced Computer Studies, University of Maryland Email author 
  • , Joan BrumbaughAffiliated withDepartment of Psychology, Franklin and Marshall College
  • , Aysu ŞubenAffiliated withDepartment of Psychology, Franklin and Marshall College

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This chapter introduces a very simple analytic method for mining large numbers of brain imaging experiments to discover functional cooperation between regions. We then report some preliminary results of its application, illustrate some of the many future projects in which we expect the technique will be of considerable use (including a way to relate fMRI to EEG), and describe a research resource for investigating functional cooperation in the cortex that will be made publicly available through the lab web site. One significant finding is that differences between cognitive domains appear to be attributable more to differences in patterns of cooperation between brain regions, rather than to differences in which brain regions are used in each domain. This is not a result that is predicted by prevailing localization-based and modular accounts of the organization of the cortex.