June 20, 2013

Validating maps of the brain’s resting state

Kick back and shut your eyes. Now stop thinking.

You have just put your brain into what neuroscientists call its resting state. What the brain is doing when an individual is not focused on the outside world has become the focus of considerable research in recent years. One of the potential benefits of these studies could be definitive diagnoses of mental health disorders ranging from bipolar to post-traumatic stress disorders.

A team of psychologists and imaging scientists at Vanderbilt has collaborated on a study that provides important corroboration of the validity of recent research examining the relationship of functional magnetic resonance imaging or fMRI maps of the brain’s resting state networks with it’s underlying anatomical and neurological structure. The study is published in the June 19 issue of the journal Neuron.