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Theta-burst TMS to the posterior superior temporal sulcus decreases resting-state fMRI connectivity across the face processing network
Daniel A. Handwerker, Geena Ianni, Benjamin Gutierrez, Vinai Roopchansingh, Javier Gonzalez-Castillo ...
Publisher: Journals Gateway
Network Neuroscience (2020) 4 (3): 746–760.
Published: 01 August 2020
AbstractView article PDF
Humans process faces by using a network of face-selective regions distributed across the brain. Neuropsychological patient studies demonstrate that focal damage to nodes in this network can impair face recognition, but such patients are rare. We approximated the effects of damage to the face network in neurologically normal human participants by using theta burst transcranial magnetic stimulation (TBS). Multi-echo functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) resting-state data were collected pre- and post-TBS delivery over the face-selective right superior temporal sulcus (rpSTS), or a control site in the right motor cortex. Results showed that TBS delivered over the rpSTS reduced resting-state connectivity across the extended face processing network. This connectivity reduction was observed not only between the rpSTS and other face-selective areas, but also between nonstimulated face-selective areas across the ventral, medial, and lateral brain surfaces (e.g., between the right amygdala and bilateral fusiform face areas and occipital face areas). TBS delivered over the motor cortex did not produce significant changes in resting-state connectivity across the face processing network. These results demonstrate that, even without task-induced fMRI signal changes, disrupting a single node in a brain network can decrease the functional connectivity between nodes in that network that have not been directly stimulated. Author Summary Human behavior is dependent on brain networks that perform different cognitive functions. We combined theta burst transcranial magnetic stimulation (TBS) with resting-state fMRI to study the face processing network. Disruption of the face-selective right posterior superior temporal sulcus (rpSTS) reduced fMRI connectivity across the face network. This impairment in connectivity was observed not only between the rpSTS and other face-selective areas, but also between nonstimulated face-selective areas on the ventral and medial brain surfaces (e.g., between the right amygdala and bilateral fusiform face areas and occipital face areas). Thus, combined TBS/fMRI can be used to approximate and measure the effects of focal brain damage on brain networks, and suggests such an approach may be useful for mapping intrinsic network organization.
Includes: Supplementary data