Cingulo-Opercular Control Network Supports Disused Motor Circuits in Standby Mode
Dillan J. Newbold,
Evan M. Gordon,
Timothy O. Laumann,
Nicole A. Seider,
David F. Montez,
Sarah J. Gross,
Ashley N. Nielsen,
Catherine R. Hoyt,
Jacqueline M. Hampton,
Derek B. Miller,
Andrew N. Van,
Bradley L. Schlaggar,
Alexandre R. Carter,
Benjamin P. Kay,
Deanna J. Greene,
Marcus E. Raichle,
Steven E. Petersen,
Abraham Z. Snyder,
Posted 04 Sep 2020
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/2020.09.03.275479
Posted 04 Sep 2020
Whole-brain resting-state functional MRI (rs-fMRI) during two weeks of limb constraint revealed that disused motor regions became more strongly connected to the cingulo-opercular network (CON), an executive control network that includes regions of the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex (dACC) and insula (). Disuse-driven increases in functional connectivity (FC) were specific to the CON and somatomotor networks and did not involve any other networks, such as the salience, frontoparietal, or default mode networks. Censoring and modeling analyses showed that FC increases during casting were mediated by large, spontaneous activity pulses that appeared in the disused motor regions and CON control regions. During limb constraint, disused motor circuits appear to enter a standby mode characterized by spontaneous activity pulses and strengthened connectivity to CON executive control regions. Significance Many studies have examined plasticity in the primary somatosensory and motor cortex during disuse, but little is known about how disuse impacts the brain outside of primary cortical areas. We leveraged the whole-brain coverage of resting-state functional MRI (rs-fMRI) to discover that disuse drives plasticity of distant executive control regions in the cingulo-opercular network (CON). Two complementary analyses, pulse censoring and pulse addition, demonstrated that increased functional connectivity between the CON and disused motor regions was driven by large, spontaneous pulses of activity in the CON and disused motor regions. These results point to a previously unknown role for the CON in supporting motor plasticity and reveal spontaneous activity pulses as a novel mechanism for reorganizing the brain’s functional connections. ### Competing Interest Statement The authors declare the following competing financial interest: N.U.F.D. is co-founder of NOUS Imaging. : #ref-1
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