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Multi-scale and multi-modal assessment of coupling in the healthy and diseased brain

CUBRIC’s Siemens Prisma 3T scanners.
Our Siemens Prisma 3T MRI scanner.

Our aim is to substantially deepen our understanding of how different brain systems (electrical, chemical, structural, metabolic) interact with each other and how differences in these interactions impact on brain function and behaviour.

A range of neuroimaging techniques has been developed to probe different systems. We apply these routinely but do not fully understand what they measure, and whether they tell us the full story about health and/or disease.

We also do not know how signals from different techniques link with each other. In this programme, we are studying healthy people and people where we already know there are differences in coupling, including people with epilepsy and psychosis. We are also studying coupling before and after perturbing the brain, through brain training, magnetic stimulation or pharamacological manipulation.

Our vision is to deliver a step change in understanding the human brain, by creating an imaging programme that uniquely combines the very best neuroimaging expertise, equipment and techniques.

We want to answer the fundamental question of how continuous interactions of electrical, chemical, vascular and metabolic processes result in the multi-scale network activity that underpins inter-individual differences in cognition, and key behavioural/functional brain changes in disease.

This integrated characterisation of brain coupling over multiple domains will transform our understanding of the working brain and guide approaches aimed at remedial action when normal coupling is disturbed.

Key goals

A team of 12 methodological and three clinical Fellows, each focused on a specific aspect of coupling, but applied within a systematic framework of integration, will allow us to achieve our key goals, which are to:

  • optimise signal capture using the most advanced imaging technologies to yield
    sensitive, robust and repeatable markers of structure/function
  • understand these signals thereby maximising their biological interpretability and value to neurocognitive models of human behaviour
  • develop an integrative modelling framework for combining data from multiple imaging modalities
  • characterise changes in multi-scale coupling following perturbations, including
    behavioural, electromagnetic and pharmacological interventions.

Funding

This project was made possible by the Wellcome Trust Strategic Award. Find out more about our funders.

Research team

Co-applicants on the Award

Publications acknowledging the Award

Preprints acknowledging the Award

  • Drakesmith, M., Jones, DK. 2018. (preprint). Mapping axon conduction delays in vivo from microstructural MRI. bioRxiv. doi: https://doi.org/10.1101/503763
  • Allen, C., Mehler, D. 2018. (preprint). Open Science challenges, benefits and tips in early career and beyond. PsyArXiv. DOI: 10.31234/osf.io/3czyt
  • Hodgetts, C. J., Stefani, M., Williams, A. N., Kolarik, B., Yonelinas, A. P., Ekstrom, A. D., Lawrence, A. D., Zhang, J., & Graham, K. S. 2018. (preprint). The role of the fornix in human navigational learning. bioRxiv
  • Metzler-Baddeley, C., Mole, J.P., Sims, R., Fasano, F., Evans, J., Jones, D.K., Aggleton, J.P., Baddeley, R.J. 2018. (preprint). The causal structure of age-dependent limbic decline: fornix white matter glia damage causes hippocampal grey matter damage, not vice versa. bioRxiv
  • Messaritaki, E., Dimitriadis, S.I., Jones, D.K. 2019. (preprint). Optimization of graph construction can significantly increase the power of structural brain network studies. bioRxiv.
  • Lipp, I., Parker, G.D., Tallantyre, E., Goodall, A., Grama, S., Patitucci, E., Heveron, P., Tomassini, V., Jones, D.K. 2019. (preprint). Tractography in the presence of white matter lesions in multiple sclerosis. bioRxiv
  • Germuska M, Chandler H, Okell T, Fasano F, Tomassini V, Murphy K, Wise R. 2019. (preprint). A frequency-domain machine learning method for dual-calibrated fMRI mapping of oxygen extraction fraction (OEF) and cerebral metabolic rate of oxygen consumption (CMRO2). bioRxiv. doi: https://doi.org/10.1101/660357
  • Williams AN, Ridgeway S, Postans M, Graham K, Lawrence AD, Hodgetts CJ. 2019. The role of the pre-commissural fornix in episodic autobiographical memory and simulation. bioRxiv. DOI: 10.1101/706150
  • Valji A, Priemysheva A, Hodgetts CJ, Costigan AG, Parker GD, Graham KS, Lawrence AD, Gruber MJ. 2019. White matter pathways supporting individual differences in epistemic and perceptual curiosity. bioRxiv. DOI: 10.1101/642165
  • Kolasinski J, Dima DC, Mehler DMA, Stephenson A, Valadan S, Kusmia S, Rossiter HE. 2019. Spatially and temporally distinct encoding of muscle and kinematic information in rostral and caudal primary motor cortex. bioRxiv. doi: https://doi.org/10.1101/613323
  • Sumner RL, Spriggs MJ, Shaw AD. 2020. Modelling thalamocortical circuitry shows visually induced LTP changes laminar connectivity in human visual cortex. bioRxiv. doi: https://doi.org/10.1101/2020.02.08.940155
  • Shaw AD, Muthukumaraswamy SD, Saxena N, Adams N, Moran RJ, Singh KD. 2019. In-silico evidence that increased cortico-thalamic connectivity and superficial pyramidal disinhibition underlie broadband task-related spectral changes induced by ketamine. bioRxiv. doi: https://doi.org/10.1101/688044
  • Driver ID, Traat M, Fasano F, Wise RG. 2020. Most small cerebral cortical veins demonstrate significant flow pulsatility: a human phase contrast MRI study at 7T. bioRxiv. doi: https://doi.org/10.1101/2020.01.24.912329
  • Hedge, C., Powell, G., Bompas, A., & Sumner, P. 2020. Strategy and processing speed eclipse individual differences in control ability in conflict tasks. PsyArXiv. https://doi.org/10.31234/osf.io/vgpxq

Accepted abstracts

  • A. N. Williams, S. Ridgeway, M. Postans, K. S. Graham, A. D. Lawrence, C. J. Hodgetts;
    Cardiff Univ. Brain Res. Imaging Ctr., Cardiff Univ., Cardiff, United Kingdom. Connecting the past and the future: The role of the pre-commissural fornix in episodic autobiographical memory and simulation. Program No. 170.04. 2019 Neuroscience Meeting Planner. Chicago, IL: Society for Neuroscience, 2019. Online
  • A. N. Williams, M. Postans, C. J. Hodgetts, S. Kusmia, R. Lissaman, D. Hucker, J. Allen, A. D. Lawrence, K. S. Graham;
    Cardiff Univ. Brain Res. Imaging Ctr. (CUBRIC), Sch. of Psychology, Cardiff Univ., Cardiff, United Kingdom; Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC), Univ. of Bristol, Bristol, United Kingdom. Thinking outside the box: A new role for hippocampal subfields in boundary extension. Program No. 456.01. 2019 Neuroscience Meeting Planner. Chicago, IL: Society for Neuroscience, 2019. Online
  • M. Postans, A. N. Williams, M. Stefani, R. Lissaman, B. S. Kolarik, A. P. Yonelinas, A. D. Ekstrom, A. D. Lawrence, J. Zhang, K. S. Graham, C. J. Hodgetts;
    Sch. of Psychology, Cardiff Univ., Cardiff, United Kingdom; Ctr. for the Neurobio. of Learning & Memory, Univ. of California, Irvine, CA; Dept. of Psychology, Univ. of California, Davis, Davis, CA; Psychology, Univ. of Arizona, Tucson, AZ. The role of the pre-commissural fornix in an extended neuroanatomical network for goal-directed navigation . Program No. 272.11. 2019 Neuroscience Meeting Planner. Chicago, IL: Society for Neuroscience, 2019. Online
  • A. Valji, A. Costigan, C. J. Hodgetts, M.-L. Read, K. S. Graham, A. Lawrence, M. Gruber;
    Cardiff Univ. Brain Res. Imaging Ctr., Cardiff Univ., Cardiff, United Kingdom. Curious connections: White matter microstructure correlates of types of curiosity. Program No. 335.21. 2018 Neuroscience Meeting Planner. San Diego, CA: Society for Neuroscience, 2018. Online
  • Hett K, Patitucci E, Chandler H, Germuska M, Hope-Gill B, Wise R. Locally reduced cerebral blood flow in patients with Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis. International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, Australia, 2020
  • Jenkins C , Kleban E , Mueller L , Evans CJ , Rudrapatna U , Jones DK, Branzoli F, Ronen I, and CMW Tax. Practical considerations of dMRS with ultra-strong gradients. International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, Australia, 2020
  • Chandler H L et al.
    Quantification of cerebral grey matter vascular and metabolic function in multiple sclerosis using dual-calibrated fMRI. International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, Montreal, 2019 (Digital Poster)
  • Chandler H L et al.
    Mapping brain oxygen metabolism with dual calibrated fMRI in pre-surgical evaluation of epilepsy: a case report comparison with FDG-PET. International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, Montreal, 2019 (Digital Poster)
  • Drakesmith M, Rudrapatna SU, Jones DK.
    Mapping axonal conduction velocities from in vivo MRI data. International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, Montreal, 2019 (Power Pitch)
  • Drakesmith M, Kleban E, Fasano F, Rudrapatna SU, Jones DK.
    Improved estimates of the g-ratio by modelling its contribution to complex signal evolution in GRE data. International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, Montreal, 2019 (Digital Poster)
  • Germuska M, Chandler HL, Stickland RC, Foster C, Steventon J, Tomassini V, Murphy K, Wise RG.
    A frequency-domain machine learning (FML) method for dual-calibrated estimation of oxygen extraction fraction (OEF) and cerebral metabolic rate of oxygen metabolism (CMRO2). International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, Montreal, 2019 (Digital Poster)
  • Jenkins C, Chandler M, Langbein F, Shermer S.
    Quantification of edited magnetic resonance spectroscopy: a comparative phantom based study of analysis methods. International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, Montreal, 2019 (Digital Poster)
  • Koller K, Rudrapatna SU, Chamberland M, Raven EP, Parker GD, Tax CMW, Drakesmith M, Evans CJ, Wood TC, Jones DK.
    Powering Up Microstructural Imaging: assessing cross-metric and cross-tract statistical power on an ultra-strong gradient MRI system. International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, Montreal, 2019 (Digital Poster)
  • Kopanoglu E, Tachrount M, Meliado EF, Klomp D, Evans J, Wise RG.
    Random RF Shimming may conceal possible local SAR hotspots for asymmetric parallel transmit coils. International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, Montreal, 2019 (Digital Poster)
  • Mueller L, Rudrapatna SU, Tax CMW, Wise RG, Jones DK.
    Diffusion MRI with b=1000 s/mm2 at TE < 22 ms using single-shot spiral readout and ultra-strong gradients: Implications for microstructure imaging. International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, Montreal, 2019 (Oral)
  • Rudrapatna SU, Mueller L, Venzi M, Wise RG, Jones DK.
    Can unprecedented echo times in human diffusion weighted fMRI help reveal its biological underpinnings? International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, Montreal, 2019 (Digital Poster)
  • Rudrapatna SU, Mueller L, Wright ME, Jones DK, Wise RG.
    A GRANDIOSE sequence to time-lock BOLD and diffusion-weighted fMRI contrasts in humans using ultra-strong gradients and spirals. International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, Montreal, 2019 (Power Pitch)
  • Tachrount M, Woorward B, Kopanoglu E, Italiaander M, Klomp D, Driver I, Wise R.
    Improving RF efficiency in the brain and the neck at 7T using a novel pTx coil. International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, Montreal, 2019 (Digital Poster)
  • Tax CMW, Rudrapatna SU, Mueller L, Jones DK.
    Characterizing diffusion of myelin water in the living human brain using ultra-strong gradients and spiral readout. International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, Montreal, 2019 (Oral)
  • Champagne A, Germuska M, Coverdale NS, Cook DJ.
    Multi-parametric analysis reveals metabolic and vascular effects driving differences in BOLD cerebrovascular reactivity associated with a history of sport concussion. International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, Montreal, 2019 (Digital Poster)
  • Rossiter HE. Oscillatory dynamics during ischemic pain. MEG UK, Cardiff, 2019. (Poster presentation)
  • Rossiter HE. Exploring cortical correlates of hand kinematics using an RSA based approach with fMRI and MEG data. MEG UK, Cardiff, 2019. (Session presentation)
  • Rossiter HE. Exploring cortical correlates of hand kinematics with fMRI and MEG. UK Sensorimotor Conference, London, 2019. (Talks session presentation)
  • Hedge, C., Powell, G., Bompas, A., & Sumner, P. If common mechanisms of inhibition existed, would we be able to detect them? Twenty-first meeting of the European Society for Cognitive Psychology (ESCOP), Potsdam, Germany, 2019. (Poster presentation)
  • Hedge, C., Powell, G., & Sumner, P. The reliability paradox: Why robust cognitive tasks do not produce reliable individual differences. The 1st Mathematical Cognition and Learning Society Conference, Oxford, UK, 2018. (Talk presentation)
  • Hedge, C., Powell, G., & Sumner, P. The costs of caution: How strategic changes influence the correlations between RT costs and error costs in choice RT tasks. The Twentieth meeting of the European Society for Cognitive Psychology (ESCOP), Potsdam, Germany, 2017. (Poster presentation)
  • Hedge, C. Crossing the desert: Understanding individual differences in cognitive control. University of Ghent, Belgium, December 2019
  • Hedge, C. Translating experimental tasks to the study of individual differences. University of Sheffield, UK, December 2018