CogSci Colloquium Talk: Lifespan associated global patterns of coherent neural communication and cognitive flexibility

Prof. Dipanjan Roy

Associate Professor, National Brain Research Centre (NBRC), Manesar

Title: Lifespan associated global patterns of coherent neural communication and cognitive flexibility
Date: Friday, 29th of October, 2021
Time: 5:00 pm (IST)


The brain during healthy aging exhibits gradual deterioration of structure but maintains a high level of cognitive ability. These structural changes are often accompanied by reorganization of functional brain networks. Existing neuro-cognitive theories of aging have argued that such changes are either beneficial or detrimental. Despite numerous empirical investigations, the field lacks a coherent account of the dynamic processes that occur over our lifespan. Here we provide a comprehensive framework to study cognitive aging by tracking brain dynamics with both functional MRI (slow time scales) and spontaneous electromagnetic oscillations (fast time scales) using E/MEG. Previous studies have quantified the basic features, e.g., power and frequencies in rhythms of interest from the perspective of attention, perception, learning, and memory. On the other hand, signatures, and modes of neural communication have recently been argued to be identifiable from global measures applied on neuro-electromagnetic data such as global coherence that quantifies the degree of togetherness of distributed neural oscillations and metastability that parametrizes the transient dynamics of the network switching between successive stable states.

Here, we demonstrate that global coherence and metastability can be informative measures to track healthy ageing dynamics over the lifespan and together with the traditional spectral measures provide an attractive explanation of neuronal information processing. Furthermore, we observed a marked frequency dependence in changes in global coordination dynamics, which, coupled with the long-held view of specific frequency bands subserving different aspects of cognition, hints at differential functional processing roles for slower and faster brain dynamics.

About the Speaker

Prof Dipanjan Roy is presently an Associate Professor at the National Brain Research Centre (NBRC) at Manesar. Prof Roy received his MS in Applied Physics (Nonlinear dynamics and biomedical signal processing) from University of Texas, USA and his PhD in Theoretical Neuroscience from CNRS Institute of Systems Neuroscience, France. He has been a Research Associate at the Charite Hospital Berlin, BCCN and MPI Leipzig Neurology Department Brain Modes Group. He has also been a Postdoctoral Research Associate at TU Berlin and a Klaus Obermayer Postdoctoral Research Scientist at the MIT Picower Center for learning and memory, McGovern Centre for Brain and Cognitive Science. Prof Roy’s primary research interests are human cognition, perception and mathematical/computational modelling.

His lab uses techniques such as Electroencephalography (EEG), Magnetoencephalography (MEG), Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and eye tracking to study various cognitive processes. Prof Roy has to his credit several journal publications and has given several invited talks at national and international forums.