Gender differences in global functional connectivity during facial emotion processing: A visual MMN study

Jian Zhang, Xiaonan Dong, Luyao Wang, Lun Zhao, Zizheng Weng, Tianyu Zhang, Junyu Sui, Ritsu Go, Qiang Huang, Jinglong Wu, Tianyi Yan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


To investigate gender differences in functional connectivity during the unattended processing of facial expressions, we recorded visual mismatch negativity (vMMN) in 34 adults using a deviant-standard reverse oddball paradigm. Using wavelet analysis, we calculated the time-frequency (TF) power at each electrode associated with happy-deviant, sad-deviant, happy-standard and sad-standard conditions. We also calculated the phase lag index (PLI) between electrode pairs and analyzed the dynamic network topologies of the functional connectivity for happy and sad vMMNs in the delta (0.5–4 Hz), theta (4–8 Hz), alpha (8–13 Hz), beta (13–30 Hz) and gamma (30–45 Hz) bands. The results showed that females induced stronger TF power and PLI values than males in only the alpha band over the whole brain regarding the vMMN. Moreover, females had a higher ratio of the number of connections between long-distance electrode pairs than males. While theoretical analysis of dynamic network topologies indicated that high node degree values were found in local brain regions of males and in almost the entire female brain, our findings suggested that female brain activation and connections between brain regions are not only stronger but also more widely distributed during the unattended processing of facial expressions than those in males.

Original languageEnglish
Article number220
JournalFrontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience
Publication statusPublished - Sep 25 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Facial expressions
  • Functional connectivity
  • Gender difference
  • Phase lag index (PLI)
  • Visual mismatch negativity (vMMN)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


Dive into the research topics of 'Gender differences in global functional connectivity during facial emotion processing: A visual MMN study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this