Information integration and complexes after anatomical and functional disconnections. a. Schematic of a split-brain-like anatomical disconnection. Top. Shown is a large main complex obtained by connecting two thalamocortical-like subsets through "callosum-like" reciprocal connections. There is also a single element that projects to all other elements, representing "subcortical" common input. Note that the Φ value for the main complex (16 elements) is high (Φ = 72 bits). There is also a larger complex including the "subcortical" element, but its Φ value is low (Φ = 10). Bottom. If the "callosum-like" connections are cut, one obtains two 8-element complexes, corresponding to the two "hemispheres", whose Φ value is reduced but still high (Φ = 61 bits). The two "hemispheres" still share some information due to common input from the "subcortical" element with which they form a large complex of low Φ. b. Schematic of a functional disconnection. Top. Shown is a large main complex obtained by linking with reciprocal connections a "supramodal" module of four elements (cornerstone) with a "visual" module (to its right) and an "auditory" module (below). Note that there are no direct connections between the "visual" and "auditory" modules. The 12 elements together form a main complex with Φ = 61 bits. Bottom. If the "auditory" module is functionally disconnected from the "supramodal" one by inactivating its four elements (indicated in blue), the main complex shrinks to include just the "supramodal" and "visual" modules. In this case, the Φ value is only minimally reduced (Φ = 57 bits).
Tononi BMC Neuroscience 2004 5:42 doi:10.1186/1471-2202-5-42