Morphological and functional differences between athletes and novices in cortical neuronal networks

Xiao Ying Tan, Yan Ling Pi, Jue Wang, Xue Pei Li, Lan Lan Zhang, Wen Dai, Hua Zhu, Zhen Ni, Jian Zhang, Yin Wu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


The cortical structural and functional differences in athletes and novices were investigated with a cross-sectional paradigm. We measured the gray matter volumes and resting-state functional connectivity in 21 basketball players and 21 novices with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) techniques. It was found that gray matter volume in the left anterior insula (AI), inferior frontal gyrus (IFG), inferior parietal lobule (IPL) and right anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), precuneus is greater in basketball players than that in novices. These five brain regions were selected as the seed regions for testing the resting-state functional connectivity in the second experiment. We found higher functional connectivity in default mode network, salience network and executive control network in basketball players compared to novices. We conclude that the morphology and functional connectivity in cortical neuronal networks in athletes and novices are different.

Original languageEnglish
Article number660
JournalFrontiers in Human Neuroscience
Publication statusPublished - 4 Jan 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Basketball player
  • Magnetic resonance imaging
  • Motor expertise
  • Plasticity
  • Resting state functional connectivity


Dive into the research topics of 'Morphological and functional differences between athletes and novices in cortical neuronal networks'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this