Segregation and integration of the functional connectome in neurodevelopmentally ‘at risk’ children

Jones, Jonathan S. and Astle, Duncan E. and CALM Team (2022) Segregation and integration of the functional connectome in neurodevelopmentally ‘at risk’ children. Developmental Science, 25 (3). ISSN 1363-755X

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Functional connectivity within and between Intrinsic Connectivity Networks (ICNs) transforms over development and is thought to support high order cognitive functions. But how variable is this process, and does it diverge with altered cognitive development? We investigated age-related changes in integration and segregation within and between ICNs in neurodevelopmentally ‘at-risk’ children, identified by practitioners as experiencing cognitive difficulties in attention, learning, language, or memory. In our analysis we used performance on a battery of 10 cognitive tasks alongside resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging in 175 at-risk children and 62 comparison children aged 5–16. We observed significant age-by-group interactions in functional connectivity between two network pairs. Integration between the ventral attention and visual networks and segregation of the limbic and fronto-parietal networks increased with age in our comparison sample, relative to at-risk children. Furthermore, functional connectivity between the ventral attention and visual networks in comparison children significantly mediated age-related improvements in executive function, compared to at-risk children. We conclude that integration between ICNs show divergent neurodevelopmental trends in the broad population of children experiencing cognitive difficulties, and that these differences in functional brain organisation may partly explain the pervasive cognitive difficulties within this group over childhood and adolescence.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Funding Information: The authors were supported by the Medical Research Council program grant MC‐A0606‐5PQ41. We would like to thank all members of the CALM Team for their help with recruitment, data collection, and data management, as well as all of the children and parents for their participation in the study. The CALM Team includes lead investigators Duncan Astle, Kate Baker, Susan Gathercole, Joni Holmes, Rogier Kievit and Tom Manly. Data collection is assisted by a team of researchers and PhD students that includes Danyal Akarca, Joe Bathelt, Marc Bennett, Madalena Bettencourt, Giacomo Bignardi, Sarah Bishop, Erica Bottacin, Lara Bridge, Diandra Brkic, Annie Bryant, Sally Butterfield, Elizabeth Byrne, Gemma Crickmore, Edwin Dalmaijer, Fánchea Daly, Tina Emery, Laura Forde, Grace Franckel, Delia Furhmann, Andrew Gadie, Sara Gharooni, Jacalyn Guy, Erin Hawkins, Agnieszka Jaroslawska, Sara Joeghan, Amy Johnson, Jonathan Jones, Silvana Mareva, Elise Ng‐Cordell, Sinead O'Brien, Cliodhna O'Leary, Joseph Rennie, Ivan Simpson‐Kent, Roma Siugzdaite, Tess Smith, Stephani Uh, Maria Vedechkina, Francesca Woolgar, Natalia Zdorovtsova, Mengya Zhang. The authors wish to thank the many professionals working in children's services in the South‐East and East of England for their support, and to the children and their families for giving up their time to visit the clinic. We would also like to thank the radiographers who support the excellent paediatric scanning at the MRC CBSU. Publisher Copyright: © 2021 The Authors. Developmental Science published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Uncontrolled Keywords: cognitive development,executive function,fmri,functional connectivity,intrinsic connectivity networks,neurodevelopment,developmental and educational psychology,cognitive neuroscience ,/dk/atira/pure/subjectarea/asjc/3200/3204
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Social Sciences > School of Psychology
Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences > Norwich Medical School
UEA Research Groups: Faculty of Social Sciences > Research Groups > Cognition, Action and Perception
Faculty of Social Sciences > Research Groups > Developmental Science
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Depositing User: LivePure Connector
Date Deposited: 04 Jan 2022 12:30
Last Modified: 03 Nov 2022 16:34
DOI: 10.1111/desc.13209


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