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Abstract #0223

Hierarchical complexity of the neonatal brain

Manuel Blesa Cabez1, Paola Galdi1, Simon R Cox1, David Q. Stoye1, Gemma Sullivan1, Gillian J. Lamb1, Alan J Quigley2, Michael J. Thrippleton1, Javier Escudero Rodriguez1, Mark E Bastin1, Keith M Smith1, and James P Boardman1
1University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, United Kingdom, 2Royal Hospital for Sick Children, Edinburgh, United Kingdom

Preterm birth is associated with long term cognitive deficits and alterations to structural connectivity of developing brain networks. Diversity of connectivity patterns within hierarchically equivalent nodes (hierarchical complexity, HC), is a prominent feature of the adult human connectome. In this work, we show that HC of the structural connectome at birth shares similar properties to HC seen in the adult connectome. Infants born preterm have different HC to infants born at term. In addition, we show that high-level order may be necessary to create structural stability, and this high-level order is resilient to environmental challenges such as preterm birth.

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