Stability in Ongoing Conscious Thought Relates to Macroscale Patterns of Brain Organization
Louis Chitiz1 (firstname.lastname@example.org), Raven Wallace1, Bronte Mckeown1, Ian Goodall-Halliwell1, Bridget Mulholland1, Ting Xu2, Michael Milham2, Elizabeth Jefferies3, Robert Leech4, Jonathan Smallwood1; 1Queen's University, 2Child Mind Institute, 3University of York, 4King's College London
Ongoing thought differs across person and context. However, it remains unclear as to how situations impact the stability of different types of thought. We had 190 healthy participants score their most recent thoughts on 16 dimensions across 14 cognitive tasks. We then used Principal Components Analysis (PCA) to decompose individuals’ probe scores on the 16 dimensions into ‘thought patterns’ representing characteristics of thought that tended to covary across the tasks measured. To quantify how stability in thought varied across the tasks, we computed the intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC) for each task on each thought pattern, with a greater ICC indicating greater within-subject stability in reported thought on a given task. To examine how stability in self-reported thought relates to fMRI-based representations of brain activity, we used existing fMRI data for each of the tasks to map them according to their whole-brain similarity. We then mapped the association between stability in reported thought and these macroscale patterns of brain organization. Two thought patterns whose stability related to whole-brain organization during task processes were "Deliberate Task-Focus" and "Intrusive Distraction". Tasks associated with greater activation of transmodal regions tended to also have more stable thought-content with regards to "Intrusive Distraction", and greater activation of frontoparietal regions associated with higher stability in "Deliberate Task-Focus". The analysis thus indicated that a person’s stability in their thinking relates to patterns of whole-brain activation engendered by their situation.
Topic Area: THINKING: Other
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April 13–16 | 2024