Rare long-range cortical connections enhance information processing
Deco G., Perl YS., Vuust P., Tagliazucchi E., Kennedy H., Kringelbach ML.
<jats:title>Summary</jats:title><jats:p>A fundamental and unanswered question concerns the key topological features of connectivity that are critically relevant for generating the dynamics underlying efficient cortical function. A candidate feature that has recently emerged is that the connectivity of the mammalian cortex follows an exponential distance rule, which uniquely includes a small proportion of long-range high-weight anatomical connections. We investigate how these long-range connections influence whole-brain dynamics with coupled oscillators. To understand the causal function of long-range connections, we first studied these connections in simple ring structures and then in complex empirical brain architectures. A small proportion of long-range connections are sufficient for significantly improving information transmission, i.e. information cascade. Large-scale empirical neuroimaging modelling point to the immense functional benefits for information processing of a brain architecture with long-range coupling that improves the information cascade thanks to the underlying turbulent regime of brain dynamics.</jats:p>