Eigenvector centrality mapping for analyzing connectivity patterns in fMRI data of the human brain.
Lohmann G., Margulies DS., Horstmann A., Pleger B., Lepsien J., Goldhahn D., Schloegl H., Stumvoll M., Villringer A., Turner R.
Functional magnetic resonance data acquired in a task-absent condition ("resting state") require new data analysis techniques that do not depend on an activation model. In this work, we introduce an alternative assumption- and parameter-free method based on a particular form of node centrality called eigenvector centrality. Eigenvector centrality attributes a value to each voxel in the brain such that a voxel receives a large value if it is strongly correlated with many other nodes that are themselves central within the network. Google's PageRank algorithm is a variant of eigenvector centrality. Thus far, other centrality measures - in particular "betweenness centrality" - have been applied to fMRI data using a pre-selected set of nodes consisting of several hundred elements. Eigenvector centrality is computationally much more efficient than betweenness centrality and does not require thresholding of similarity values so that it can be applied to thousands of voxels in a region of interest covering the entire cerebrum which would have been infeasible using betweenness centrality. Eigenvector centrality can be used on a variety of different similarity metrics. Here, we present applications based on linear correlations and on spectral coherences between fMRI times series. This latter approach allows us to draw conclusions of connectivity patterns in different spectral bands. We apply this method to fMRI data in task-absent conditions where subjects were in states of hunger or satiety. We show that eigenvector centrality is modulated by the state that the subjects were in. Our analyses demonstrate that eigenvector centrality is a computationally efficient tool for capturing intrinsic neural architecture on a voxel-wise level.