Development of distinct control networks through segregation and integration

Damien A. Fair, Nico U.F. Dosenbach, Jessica A. Church, Alexander L. Cohen, Shefali Brahmbhatt, Francis M. Miezin, Deanna M. Barch, Marcus E. Raichle, Steven E. Petersen, Bradley L. Schlaggar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

978 Scopus citations


Human attentional control is unrivaled. We recently proposed that adults depend on distinct frontoparietal and cinguloopercular networks for adaptive online task control versus more stable set control, respectively. During development, both experience-dependent evoked activity and spontaneous waves of synchronized cortical activity are thought to support the formation and maintenance of neural networks. Such mechanisms may encourage tighter "integration" of some regions into networks over time while "segregating" other sets of regions into separate networks. Here we use resting state functional connectivity MRI, which measures correlations in spontaneous blood oxygenation level-dependent signal fluctuations between brain regions to compare previously identified control networks between children and adults. We find that development of the proposed adult control networks involves both segregation (i.e., decreased short-range connections) and integration (i.e., increased long-range connections) of the brain regions that comprise them. Delay/disruption in the developmental processes of segregation and integration may play a role in disorders of control, such as autism, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and Tourette's syndrome.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)13507-13512
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number33
StatePublished - Aug 14 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Attention
  • Connectivity
  • Functional MRI
  • Spontaneous activity development


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