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Enhancement of resting-state fcMRI networks by prior sensory stimulation. Brain Connect 2014 Nov;4(9):760-8 PMID: 25387238 PMCID: PMC4238242

Pubmed ID





It is important to consider the effect of a previous experimental condition when analyzing resting-state functional connectivity magnetic resonance imaging (fcMRI) data. In this work, a simple sensory stimulation functional MRI (fMRI) experiment was conducted between two resting-state fcMRI acquisitions in anesthetized rats using a high-field small-animal MR scanner. Previous human studies have reported fcMRI network alteration by prior task/stimulus utilizing similar experimental paradigms. An anesthetized rat preparation was used to test whether brain regions with higher level functions are involved in post-task/stimulus fcMRI network alteration. We demonstrate significant fcMRI enhancement poststimulation in the sensory cortical, limbic, and insular brain regions in rats. These brain regions have been previously implicated in vigilance and anesthetic arousal networks. We tested their experimental paradigm in several inbred strains of rats with known phenotypic differences in anesthetic susceptibility and cerebral vascular function. Brown Norway (BN), Dahl Salt-Sensitive (SS), and consomic SSBN13 strains were tested. We have previously shown significant differences in blood oxygen level-dependent fMRI activity and fcMRI networks across these strains. Here we report statistically significant interstrain differences in regional fcMRI poststimulation enhancement. In the SS strain, poststimulation enhancement occurred in posterior sensory and limbic cortical brain regions. In the BN strain, poststimulation enhancement appeared in anterior cingulate and subcortical limbic brain regions. These results imply that a prior condition has a significant impact on fcMRI networks that depend on intersubject difference in genetics and physiology.

Author List

Li C, Li Z, Ward BD, Dwinell MR, Lombard JH, Hudetz AG, Pawela CP


Melinda R. Dwinell PhD Center Associate Director, Associate Professor in the Physiology department at Medical College of Wisconsin
Julian H. Lombard PhD Professor in the Physiology department at Medical College of Wisconsin
Christopher Pawela PhD Assistant Professor in the Anesthesiology department at Medical College of Wisconsin


2-s2.0-84937199899   4 Citations

MESH terms used to index this publication - Major topics in bold

Afferent Pathways
Analysis of Variance
Brain Mapping
Echo-Planar Imaging
Image Processing, Computer-Assisted
Magnetic Resonance Imaging
Physical Stimulation
Rats, Inbred BN
Rats, Inbred Dahl
Species Specificity
jenkins-FCD Prod-331 a335b1a6d1e9c32173c9534e6f6ff51494143916