A nonstationary nonparametric Bayesian approach to dynamically modeling effective connectivity in functional magnetic resonance imaging experiments
Effective connectivity analysis provides an understanding of the functional organization of the brain by studying how activated regions influence one other. We propose a nonparametric Bayesian approach to model effective connectivity assuming a dynamic nonstationary neuronal system. Our approach uses the Dirichlet process to specify an appropriate (most plausible according to our prior beliefs) dynamic model as the “expectation” of a set of plausible models upon which we assign a probability distribution. This addresses model uncertainty associated with dynamic effective connectivity. We derive a Gibbs sampling approach to sample from the joint (and marginal) posterior distributions of the unknowns. Results on simulation experiments demonstrate our model to be flexible and a better candidate in many situations. We also used our approach to analyzing functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) data on a Stroop task: our analysis provided new insight into the mechanism by which an individual brain distinguishes and learns about shapes of objects.
This is an article from The Annals of Applied Statistics 5 (2011): 1183, doi: 10.1214/11-AOAS470. Posted with permission.