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Neuron. 2013 Aug 21;79(4):798-813. doi: 10.1016/j.neuron.2013.07.035.

Evidence for hubs in human functional brain networks.

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Department of Neurology, Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, 660 South Euclid Avenue, St. Louis, MO 63110, USA.


Hubs integrate and distribute information in powerful ways due to the number and positioning of their contacts in a network. Several resting-state functional connectivity MRI reports have implicated regions of the default mode system as brain hubs; we demonstrate that previous degree-based approaches to hub identification may have identified portions of large brain systems rather than critical nodes of brain networks. We utilize two methods to identify hub-like brain regions: (1) finding network nodes that participate in multiple subnetworks of the brain, and (2) finding spatial locations in which several systems are represented within a small volume. These methods converge on a distributed set of regions that differ from previous reports on hubs. This work identifies regions that support multiple systems, leading to spatially constrained predictions about brain function that may be tested in terms of lesions, evoked responses, and dynamic patterns of activity.

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