Large-scale topology and the default mode network in the mouse connectome

James M Stafford, Benjamin R Jarrett, Oscar Miranda-Dominguez, Brian D Mills, Nicholas Cain, Stefan Mihalas, Garet P Lahvis, K Matthew Lattal, Suzanne H Mitchell, Stephen V David, John D Fryer, Joel T Nigg, Damien A Fair

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

177 Scopus citations


Noninvasive functional imaging holds great promise for serving as a translational bridge between human and animal models of various neurological and psychiatric disorders. However, despite a depth of knowledge of the cellular and molecular underpinnings of atypical processes in mouse models, little is known about the large-scale functional architecture measured by functional brain imaging, limiting translation to human conditions. Here, we provide a robust processing pipeline to generate high-resolution, whole-brain resting-state functional connectivity MRI (rs-fcMRI) images in the mouse. Using a mesoscale structural connectome (i.e., an anterograde tracer mapping of axonal projections across the mouse CNS), we show that rs-fcMRI in the mouse has strong structural underpinnings, validating our procedures. We next directly show that large-scale network properties previously identified in primates are present in rodents, although they differ in several ways. Last, we examine the existence of the so-called default mode network (DMN)--a distributed functional brain system identified in primates as being highly important for social cognition and overall brain function and atypically functionally connected across a multitude of disorders. We show the presence of a potential DMN in the mouse brain both structurally and functionally. Together, these studies confirm the presence of basic network properties and functional networks of high translational importance in structural and functional systems in the mouse brain. This work clears the way for an important bridge measurement between human and rodent models, enabling us to make stronger conclusions about how regionally specific cellular and molecular manipulations in mice relate back to humans.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)18745-50
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number52
StatePublished - Dec 30 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Animals
  • Axons/pathology
  • Connectome
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Nerve Net/pathology
  • Nervous System Diseases/pathology
  • Psychotic Disorders/pathology

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't


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