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Uncovering the Topology of Time-Varying fMRI Data Using Cubical Persistence
Bastian Rieck, Tristan Yates, Christian Bock, Karsten Borgwardt, Guy Wolf, Nicholas Turk-Browne, Smita Krishnaswamy
Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) is a crucial technology for gaining insights into cognitive processes in humans. Data amassed from fMRI measurements result in volumetric data sets that vary over time. However, analysing such data presents a challenge due to the large degree of noise and person-to-person variation in how information is represented in the brain. To address this challenge, we present a novel topological approach that encodes each time point in an fMRI data set as a persistence diagram of topological features, i.e. high-dimensional voids present in the data. This representation naturally does not rely on voxel-by-voxel correspondence and is robust to noise. We show that these time-varying persistence diagrams can be clustered to find meaningful groupings between participants, and that they are also useful in studying within-subject brain state trajectories of subjects performing a particular task. Here, we apply both clustering and trajectory analysis techniques to a group of participants watching the movie 'Partly Cloudy'. We observe significant differences in both brain state trajectories and overall topological activity between adults and children watching the same movie.
A Persistent Weisfeiler-Lehman Procedure for Graph Classification
Bastian Rieck, Christian Bock, Karsten Borgwardt
The Weisfeiler–Lehman graph kernel exhibits competitive performance in many graph classification tasks. However, its subtree features are not able to capture connected components and cycles, topological features known for characterising graphs. To extract such features, we leverage propagated node label information and transform unweighted graphs into metric ones. This permits us to augment the subtree features with topological information obtained using persistent homology, a concept from topological data analysis. Our method, which we formalise as a generalisation of Weisfeiler–Lehman subtree features, exhibits favourable classification accuracy and its improvements in predictive performance are mainly driven by including cycle information.