Recovery of neural dynamics criticality in personalized whole-brain models of stroke

Rodrigo P. Rocha, Loren Koçillari, Samir Suweis, Michele De Filippo De Grazia, Michel Thiebaut de Schotten, Marco Zorzi, Maurizio Corbetta
Nat Commun. 2022-06-27; 13(1):
DOI: 10.1038/s41467-022-30892-6

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The critical brain hypothesis states that biological neuronal networks, because of their structural and functional architecture, work near phase transitions for optimal response to internal and external inputs. Criticality thus provides optimal function and behavioral capabilities. We test this hypothesis by examining the influence of brain injury (strokes) on the criticality of neural dynamics estimated at the level of single participants using directly measured individual structural connectomes and whole-brain models. Lesions engender a sub-critical state that recovers over time in parallel with behavior. The improvement of criticality is associated with the re-modeling of specific white-matter connections. We show that personalized whole-brain dynamical models poised at criticality track neural dynamics, alteration post-stroke, and behavior at the level of single participants.

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