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The human default mode network (DMN) is implicated in several unique mental capacities. In this study, we tested whether brain-wide interregional communication in the DMN can be derived from population variability in intrinsic activity fluctuations, gray-matter morphology, and fiber tract anatomy. In a sample of 10,000 UK Biobank participants, pattern-learning algorithms revealed functional coupling states in the DMN that are linked to connectivity profiles between other macroscopical brain networks. In addition, DMN gray matter volume was covaried with white matter microstructure of the fornix. Collectively, functional and structural patterns unmasked a possible division of labor within major DMN nodes: Subregions most critical for cortical network interplay were adjacent to subregions most predictive of fornix fibers from the hippocampus that processes memories and places.

Original publication




Journal article


Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A

Publication Date





12295 - 12300


high-level cognition, machine learning, systems neuroscience, Adult, Aged, Algorithms, Biological Specimen Banks, Brain, Brain Mapping, Female, Gray Matter, Humans, Learning, Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Male, Middle Aged, United Kingdom, White Matter