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Funct Neurol. 2011 Jan-Mar;26(1):37-43.

Resting state activity in patients with disorders of consciousness.

Author information

1
Coma Science Group, Cyclotron Research Center, University of Liège, Belgium. andrea.soddu@ulg.ac.be

Abstract

Recent advances in the study of spontaneous brain activity have demonstrated activity patterns that emerge with no task performance or sensory stimulation; these discoveries hold promise for the study of higher-order associative network functionality. Additionally, such advances are argued to be relevant in pathological states, such as disorders of consciousness (DOC), i.e., coma, vegetative and minimally conscious states. Recent studies on resting state activity in DOC, measured with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) techniques, show that functional connectivity is disrupted in the task-negative or the default mode network. However, the two main approaches employed in the analysis of resting state functional connectivity data (i.e., hypothesis-driven seed-voxel and data-driven independent component analysis) present multiple methodological difficulties, especially in non-collaborative DOC patients. Improvements in motion artifact removal and spatial normalization are needed before fMRI resting state data can be used as proper biomarkers in severe brain injury. However, we anticipate that such developments will boost clinical resting state fMRI studies, allowing for easy and fast acquisitions and ultimately improve the diagnosis and prognosis in the absence of DOC patients' active collaboration in data acquisition.

PMID:
21693087
PMCID:
PMC3814510
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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