Research Topic

Dynamic Functioning of Resting State Networks in Physiological and Pathological Conditions

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After twenty years from its discovery, the Default Mode Network (DMN), along with the other resting state networks, is still under the sign of great neuroscientific interest. The DMN consists of discrete, bilateral and symmetrical cortical nodes, in the medial and lateral parietal, medial prefrontal, and ...

After twenty years from its discovery, the Default Mode Network (DMN), along with the other resting state networks, is still under the sign of great neuroscientific interest. The DMN consists of discrete, bilateral and symmetrical cortical nodes, in the medial and lateral parietal, medial prefrontal, and medial and lateral temporal cortices of the human, nonhuman primate, cat, and rodent brains. It is engaged when mental activity is internally directed, when an individual is left “undisturbed” to think of himself, not engaged in a specific cognitive task. In fact, the term “default” arose from the discovery of the network's heightened activity during “inactive” periods. However, this word is not particularly precise, because the network is also active during directed tasks, such as remembering one's past or thinking about the future.

William James called this state of mind “stream of consciousness”. The more recent neuroscience defined Random Episodic Silent Thinking (REST), emphasizing the free and errant nature of this mode of thinking, partly in contrast with the engagement of mind during cognitive tasks.

Currently, the study of the brain's intrinsic activity occupies most of the neuroscientific research, in the field of the human brain in health and disease and it might elucidate the bases of neuropsychiatry and neurological diseases, besides to enlighten the neural concept of Self.

The overall goal of this Research Topic is to provide a comprehensive coverage of the latest advances in dynamic functioning of Resting State Networks (RSNs), studied with different neuroimaging techniques including, but not limited to MRI (brain morphometry, fMRI, Diffusion Tensor Imaging-DTI, Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy-MRS, Perfusion Weighted Imaging-PWI), PET, Electroencephalography-EEG, MEG, Electrocorticography-ECoG and Optical Imaging Methods, regarding brain functioning both in physiological conditions and in neuro-psychiatric diseases. Potentials authors are invited to submit papers (original research, case reports, review articles, commentaries) reviewing, comparing or developing the associated methods relate to dynamic functional of RSNs and their clinical applications.


Keywords: resting state networks, dynamic brain activity, resting state functional anticorrelations, advanced neuroimaging techniques


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