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The Dynamical and Structural Basis of Human Mind Complexity: Segregation and Integration of Information and Processing in the Brain (DYSTRUCTURE)
Start date: Jul 1, 2012, End date: Jun 30, 2017 PROJECT  FINISHED 

"Perceptions, memories, emotions, and everything that makes us human, demand the flexible integration of information represented and computed in a distributed manner. The human brain is structured into a large number of areas in which information and computation are highly segregated. Normal brain functions require the integration of functionally specialized but widely distributed brain areas. Furthermore, human behavior entails a flexible task- dependent interplay between different subsets of these brain areas in order to integrate them according to the corresponding goal-directed requirements. We contend that the functional and encoding roles of diverse neuronal populations across areas are subject to intra- and inter-cortical dynamics. More concretely, we hypothesize that coherent oscillations within frequency-specific large-scale networks and coherent structuring of the underlying fluctuations are crucial mechanisms for the flexible integration of distributed processing and interaction of representations.The project aims to elucidate precisely the interplay and mutual entrainment between local brain area dynamics and global network dynamics and their breakdown in brain diseases. We wish to better understand how segregated distributed information and processing are integrated in a flexible and context-dependent way as required for goal-directed behavior. It will allow us to comprehend the mechanisms underlying brain functions by complementing structural and activation based analyses with dynamics. We expect to gain a full explanation of the mechanisms that mediate the interactions between global and local spatio-temporal patterns of activity revealed at many levels of observations (fMRI, EEG, MEG) in humans under task and resting conditions, complemented and further constrained by using more detailed characterization of brain dynamics via Local Field Potentials and neuronal recording in animals under task and resting conditions."
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