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Brain Connect. 2016 Jul;6(6):482-95. doi: 10.1089/brain.2015.0375.

Implication of the Slow-5 Oscillations in the Disruption of the Default-Mode Network in Healthy Aging and Stroke.

Author information

  • 11 Neuroscience Training Program, University of Wisconsin-Madison , Madison, Wisconsin.
  • 22 Department of Radiology, University of Wisconsin-Madison , Madison, Wisconsin.
  • 33 Department of Neurology, University of Wisconsin-Madison , Madison, Wisconsin.
  • 44 Department of Medical Physics, University of Wisconsin-Madison , Madison, Wisconsin.
  • 55 Department of Psychiatry, University of Wisconsin-Madison , Madison, Wisconsin.
  • 66 Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of Wisconsin-Madison , Madison, Wisconsin.


The processes of normal aging and aging-related pathologies subject the brain to an active re-organization of its brain networks. Among these, the default-mode network (DMN) is consistently implicated with a demonstrated reduction in functional connectivity within the network. However, no clear stipulation on the underlying mechanisms of the de-synchronization has yet been provided. In this study, we examined the spectral distribution of the intrinsic low-frequency oscillations (LFOs) of the DMN sub-networks in populations of young normals, older subjects, and acute and subacute ischemic stroke patients. The DMN sub-networks were derived using a mid-order group independent component analysis with 117 eyes-closed resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI) sessions from volunteers in those population groups, isolating three robust components of the DMN among other resting-state networks. The posterior component of the DMN presented noticeable differences. Measures of amplitude of low-frequency fluctuation (ALFF) and fractional ALFF (fALFF) of the network component demonstrated a decrease in resting-state cortical oscillation power in the elderly (normal and patient), specifically in the slow-5 (0.01-0.027 Hz) range of oscillations. Furthermore, the contribution of the slow-5 oscillations during the resting state was diminished for a greater influence of the slow-4 (0.027-0.073 Hz) oscillations in the subacute stroke group, not only suggesting a vulnerability of the slow-5 oscillations to disruption but also indicating a change in the distribution of the oscillations within the resting-state frequencies. The reduction of network slow-5 fALFF in the posterior DMN component was found to present a potential association with behavioral measures, suggesting a brain-behavior relationship to those oscillations, with this change in behavior potentially resulting from an altered network integrity induced by a weakening of the slow-5 oscillations during the resting state. The repeated identification of those frequencies in the disruption of DMN stresses a critical role of the slow-5 oscillations in network disruption, and it accentuates the importance of managing those oscillations in the health of the DMN.


aging; default-mode network; fALFF; posterior DMN; rs-fMRI; slow-5; stroke

[Available on 2017-07-01]
[PubMed - in process]
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