Laminar fMRI: applications for cognitive neuroscience

Samuel J D Lawrence, Elia Formisano, Lars Muckli, Floris P de Lange

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

The cortex is a massively recurrent network, characterized by feedforward and feedback connections between brain areas as well as lateral connections within an area. Feedforward, horizontal and feedback responses largely activate separate layers of a cortical unit, meaning they can be dissociated by lamina-resolved neurophysiological techniques. Such techniques are invasive and are therefore rarely used in humans. However, recent developments in high spatial resolution fMRI allow for non-invasive, in vivo measurements of brain responses specific to separate cortical layers. This provides an important opportunity to dissociate between feedforward and feedback brain responses, and investigate communication between brain areas at a more fine- grained level than previously possible in the human species. In this review, we highlight recent studies that successfully used laminar fMRI to isolate layer-specific feedback responses in human sensory cortex. In addition, we review several areas of cognitive neuroscience that stand to benefit from this new technological development, highlighting contemporary hypotheses that yield testable predictions for laminar fMRI. We hope to encourage researchers with the opportunity to embrace this development in fMRI research, as we expect that many future advancements in our current understanding of human brain function will be gained from measuring lamina-specific brain responses.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)785-791
Number of pages7
JournalNeuroimage
Volume197
Early online date4 Jul 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 15 Aug 2019

Keywords

  • Laminar fMRI
  • Visual cortex
  • Cortical layers
  • Bottom-up
  • Top-down
  • Feedforward
  • Feedback
  • PRIMARY VISUAL-CORTEX
  • OCULAR DOMINANCE COLUMNS
  • WORKING-MEMORY
  • SPATIAL ATTENTION
  • NEURAL ACTIVITY
  • NEGATIVE BOLD
  • MODEL
  • V1
  • BRAIN
  • ORGANIZATION

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