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Algebraic Topology of Multi-Brain Connectivity Networks Reveals Dissimilarity in Functional Patterns during Spoken Communications

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

ABSTRACT

Human behaviour in various circumstances mirrors the corresponding brain connectivity patterns, which are suitably represented by functional brain networks. While the objective analysis of these networks by graph theory tools deepened our understanding of brain functions, the multi-brain structures and connections underlying human social behaviour remain largely unexplored. In this study, we analyse the aggregate graph that maps coordination of EEG signals previously recorded during spoken communications in two groups of six listeners and two speakers. Applying an innovative approach based on the algebraic topology of graphs, we analyse higher-order topological complexes consisting of mutually interwoven cliques of a high order to which the identified functional connections organise. Our results reveal that the topological quantifiers provide new suitable measures for differences in the brain activity patterns and inter-brain synchronisation between speakers and listeners. Moreover, the higher topological complexity correlates with the listener’s concentration to the story, confirmed by self-rating, and closeness to the speaker’s brain activity pattern, which is measured by network-to-network distance. The connectivity structures of the frontal and parietal lobe consistently constitute distinct clusters, which extend across the listener’s group. Formally, the topology quantifiers of the multi-brain communities exceed the sum of those of the participating individuals and also reflect the listener’s rated attributes of the speaker and the narrated subject. In the broader context, the presented study exposes the relevance of higher topological structures (besides standard graph measures) for characterising functional brain networks under different stimuli.

No MeSH data available.


Evolution of the brain-to-brain distance.The timeline (16 frames) of the GED between brain activity networks of the listeners in group 1 (left) and in group 2 (right) from both speakers S1 and S2 is shown for the stimulus1. Each circle indicates the minimum distance from the corresponding speaker that occurred during the process.
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pone.0166787.g015: Evolution of the brain-to-brain distance.The timeline (16 frames) of the GED between brain activity networks of the listeners in group 1 (left) and in group 2 (right) from both speakers S1 and S2 is shown for the stimulus1. Each circle indicates the minimum distance from the corresponding speaker that occurred during the process.

Mentions: The coordination with a right speaker evolves over time, as measured by the distance between speaker–listener SBN constructed in a sequence of time intervals, cf. Fig 15. However, there is always a gap (minimal distance) between a speaker and anyone of the listeners, in agreement to the occurrence of higher structures and extra links in the listener’s activity networks, mentioned above. It is also interesting to note that the listener’s networks exhibit a high degree of similarity, perhaps suggesting similar initial brain activity patterns, before focusing to a particular speaker.


Algebraic Topology of Multi-Brain Connectivity Networks Reveals Dissimilarity in Functional Patterns during Spoken Communications
Evolution of the brain-to-brain distance.The timeline (16 frames) of the GED between brain activity networks of the listeners in group 1 (left) and in group 2 (right) from both speakers S1 and S2 is shown for the stimulus1. Each circle indicates the minimum distance from the corresponding speaker that occurred during the process.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC5120797&req=5

pone.0166787.g015: Evolution of the brain-to-brain distance.The timeline (16 frames) of the GED between brain activity networks of the listeners in group 1 (left) and in group 2 (right) from both speakers S1 and S2 is shown for the stimulus1. Each circle indicates the minimum distance from the corresponding speaker that occurred during the process.
Mentions: The coordination with a right speaker evolves over time, as measured by the distance between speaker–listener SBN constructed in a sequence of time intervals, cf. Fig 15. However, there is always a gap (minimal distance) between a speaker and anyone of the listeners, in agreement to the occurrence of higher structures and extra links in the listener’s activity networks, mentioned above. It is also interesting to note that the listener’s networks exhibit a high degree of similarity, perhaps suggesting similar initial brain activity patterns, before focusing to a particular speaker.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

ABSTRACT

Human behaviour in various circumstances mirrors the corresponding brain connectivity patterns, which are suitably represented by functional brain networks. While the objective analysis of these networks by graph theory tools deepened our understanding of brain functions, the multi-brain structures and connections underlying human social behaviour remain largely unexplored. In this study, we analyse the aggregate graph that maps coordination of EEG signals previously recorded during spoken communications in two groups of six listeners and two speakers. Applying an innovative approach based on the algebraic topology of graphs, we analyse higher-order topological complexes consisting of mutually interwoven cliques of a high order to which the identified functional connections organise. Our results reveal that the topological quantifiers provide new suitable measures for differences in the brain activity patterns and inter-brain synchronisation between speakers and listeners. Moreover, the higher topological complexity correlates with the listener’s concentration to the story, confirmed by self-rating, and closeness to the speaker’s brain activity pattern, which is measured by network-to-network distance. The connectivity structures of the frontal and parietal lobe consistently constitute distinct clusters, which extend across the listener’s group. Formally, the topology quantifiers of the multi-brain communities exceed the sum of those of the participating individuals and also reflect the listener’s rated attributes of the speaker and the narrated subject. In the broader context, the presented study exposes the relevance of higher topological structures (besides standard graph measures) for characterising functional brain networks under different stimuli.

No MeSH data available.