Previous researches have explored the changes of functional connectivity caused by smoking with the aid of fMRI. This study considers not only functional connectivity but also effective connectivity regarding both brain networks and brain regions by using a novel analysis framework that combines independent component analysis (ICA) and Granger causality analysis (GCA). We conducted a resting-state fMRI experiment in which twenty-one heavy smokers were scanned in two sessions of different conditions: smoking abstinence followed by smoking satiety. In our framework, group ICA was firstly adopted to obtain the spatial patterns of the default-mode network (DMN), executive-control network (ECN), and salience network (SN). Their associated time courses were analyzed using GCA, showing that the effective connectivity from SN to DMN was reduced and that from ECN/DMN to SN was enhanced after smoking replenishment. A paired t-test on ICA spatial patterns revealed functional connectivity variation in regions such as the insula, parahippocampus, precuneus, anterior cingulate cortex, supplementary motor area, and ventromedial/dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. These regions were later selected as the regions of interest (ROIs), and their effective connectivity was investigated subsequently using GCA. In smoking abstinence, the insula showed the increased effective connectivity with the other ROIs; while in smoking satiety, the parahippocampus had the enhanced inter-area effective connectivity. These results demonstrate our hypothesis that for deprived heavy smokers, smoking replenishment takes effect on both functional and effective connectivity. Moreover, our analysis framework could be applied in a range of neuroscience studies.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)