Improved dynamic connection detection power in estimated dynamic functional connectivity considering multivariate dependencies between brain regions

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Human brain mapping


To estimate dynamic functional connectivity (dFC), the conventional method of sliding window correlation (SWC) suffers from poor performance of dynamic connection detection. This stems from the equal weighting of observations, suboptimal time scale, nonsparse output, and the fact that it is bivariate. To overcome these limitations, we exploited the kernel-reweighted logistic regression (KELLER) algorithm, a method that is common in genetic studies, to estimate dFC in resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI) data. KELLER can estimate dFC through estimating both spatial and temporal patterns of functional connectivity between brain regions. This paper compares the performance of the proposed KELLER method with current methods (SWC and tapered-SWC (T-SWC) with different window lengths) based on both simulated and real rs-fMRI data. Estimated dFC networks were assessed for detecting dynamically connected brain region pairs with hypothesis testing. Simulation results revealed that KELLER can detect dynamic connections with a statistical power of 87.35% compared with 70.17% and 58.54% associated with T-SWC (p-value = .001) and SWC (p-value <.001), respectively. Results of these different methods applied on real rs-fMRI data were investigated for two aspects: calculating the similarity between identified mean dynamic pattern and identifying dynamic pattern in default mode network (DMN). In 68% of subjects, the results of T-SWC with window length of 100 s, among different window lengths, demonstrated the highest similarity to those of KELLER. With regards to DMN, KELLER estimated previously reported dynamic connection pairs between dorsal and ventral DMN while SWC-based method was unable to detect these dynamic connections.

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ePub ahead of print