Studies on functional brain lateralization using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) have generally focused on lateralization of local brain regions. To explore the lateralization on the whole-brain level, lateralization of functional connectivity using resting-state fMRI (N=87, right handed) was analyzed and left- and right-lateralized networks were mapped. Four hundred two equally spaced regions of interest (ROI) covering the entire gray matter were divided into 358 task-positive and 44 task-negative ROIs. Lateralization of functional connectivity was analyzed separately for the task-positive and task-negative regions to prevent spuriously high lateralization indices caused by negative correlations between task-positive and task-negative regions. Lateralized functional connections were obtained using k-means clustering analysis. Within the task-positive network, the right-lateralized functional connections were between the occipital and inferior/middle frontal regions among other connections, whereas the left-lateralized functional connections were among fusiform gyrus and inferior frontal and inferior/superior parietal regions. Within the task-negative network, the left-lateralized connections were mainly between the precuneus and medial prefrontal regions. Specific brain regions exhibited different left- or right-lateralized connections with other regions, which suggest the importance of reporting lateralized connections over lateralized seed regions. The mean lateralization indices of the left- and right-lateralized connections were correlated, suggesting that the lateralization of connectivity may result from complementary processes between the lateralized networks. The potential functions of the lateralized networks were discussed.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- functional connectivity
- hemispheric asymmetry
- resting state