October 24, 2020

Movie-watching outperforms rest for functional connectivity-based prediction of behavior

A major goal of human neuroscience is to relate differences in brain function to differences in behavior across people. Recent work has established that whole-brain functional connectivity patterns are relatively stable within individuals and unique across individuals, and that features of these patterns predict various traits. However, while functional connectivity is most often measured at rest, certain tasks may enhance individual signals and improve sensitivity to behavioral differences. Here, we show that compared to the resting state, functional connectivity measured during naturalistic viewing – i.e., movie watching – yields more accurate predictions of trait-like phenotypes in the both cognitive and emotional domains. Traits could be predicted using less than three minutes of data from single video clips, and clips with highly social content gave the most accurate predictions. Results suggest that naturalistic stimuli amplify individual differences in behaviorally relevant brain networks.

 bioRxiv Subject Collection: Neuroscience

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