Network Science

  • Network Science / Volume 1 / Issue 03 / December 2013, pp 353-373
  • Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2014 The online version of this article is published within an Open Access environment subject to the conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution licence
  • DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/nws.2013.19 (About DOI), Published online: 03 January 2014
  • OPEN ACCESS

Research Article

Multi-scale community organization of the human structural connectome and its relationship with resting-state functional connectivity

RICHARD F. BETZELa1, ALESSANDRA GRIFFAa2, ANDREA AVENA-KOENIGSBERGERa3, JOAQUÍN GOÑIa4, JEAN-PHILIPPE THIRANa5, PATRIC HAGMANNa5 and OLAF SPORNSa6

a1 Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN, USA Program in Cognitive Science, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN, USA

a2 Department of Radiology, University Hospital Center and University of Lausanne (CHUV), Lausanne, Switzerland Signal Processing Laboratory (LTS5), Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), Lausanne, Switzerland

a3 Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN, USA Program in Cognitive Science, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN, USA

a4 Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN, USA

a5 Department of Radiology, University Hospital Center and University of Lausanne (CHUV), Lausanne, Switzerland Signal Processing Laboratory (LTS5), Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), Lausanne, Switzerland

a6 Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN, USA Program in Cognitive Science, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN, USA (e-mail: osporns@indiana.edu)

Abstract

The human connectome has been widely studied over the past decade. A principal finding is that it can be decomposed into communities of densely interconnected brain regions. Past studies have often used single-scale modularity measures in order to infer the connectome's community structure, possibly overlooking interesting structure at other organizational scales. In this report, we used the partition stability framework, which defines communities in terms of a Markov process (random walk), to infer the connectome's multi-scale community structure. Comparing the community structure to observed resting-state functional connectivity revealed communities across a broad range of scales that were closely related to functional connectivity. This result suggests a mapping between communities in structural networks, models of influence-spreading and diffusion, and brain function. It further suggests that the spread of influence among brain regions may not be limited to a single characteristic scale.

Keywords:

  • connectome;
  • community structure;
  • multi-scale;
  • Markov process;
  • resting-state
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