Overlapping and parallel cerebello-cerebral networks contributing to sensorimotor control: an intrinsic functional connectivity study.
Kipping JA., Grodd W., Kumar V., Taubert M., Villringer A., Margulies DS.
In concert with sensorimotor control areas of the cerebrum, the cerebellum shows differential activation patterns during a variety of sensorimotor-related tasks. However, the spatial details and extent of the complex and heterogeneous cerebello-cerebral systems involved in action control remain uncertain. In this study, we use intrinsic functional connectivity (iFC) to examine cerebello-cerebral networks of five cerebellar lobules (I-IV, V, VI, and VIIIa/b) that have been empirically identified to form the functional basis of sensorimotor processes. A refined cerebellar seed-region selection allowed us to identify a network of primary sensorimotor and supplementary motor areas (I-V), a network of prefrontal, premotor, occipito-temporal and inferior-parietal regions (VI), and two largely overlapping networks involving premotor and superior parietal regions, the temporo-parietal junction as well as occipito-temporal regions (VIIIa/b). All networks involved the medial prefrontal/cingulate cortex. These cerebral clusters were used in a partial correlation analysis to systematically map cerebral connectivity throughout the entire cerebellum. We discuss these findings in the framework of affective and cognitive control, sensorimotor, multisensory systems, and executive/language systems. Within the cerebellum we found that cerebro-cerebellar systems seem to run in parallel, as indicated by distinct sublobular functional topography of prefrontal, parietal, sensorimotor, cingulate, and occipito-temporal regions. However, all areas showed overlapping connectivity to various degrees in both hemispheres. The results of both analyses demonstrate that different sublobular parts of the cerebellar lobules may dominate in different aspects of primary or higher-order sensorimotor processing. This systems-level cerebellar organization provides a more detailed structure for cerebello-cerebral interaction which contributes to our understanding of complex motor behavior.