We describe advances in the understanding of brain dynamics that are important for understanding the operation of the cerebral cortex in health and disease. Peaks in the resting state fMRI BOLD signal in many different brain areas can become synchronized. In data from 1,017 participants from the Human Connectome Project, we show that early visual and connected areas have the highest probability of synchronized peaks. We show that these cortical areas also have low temporal variability of their functional connectivity. We show that there is an approximately reciprocal relation between the probability that a brain region will be involved in synchronized peaks and the temporal variability of the connectivity of a brain region. We show that a high probability of synchronized peaks and a low temporal variability of the connectivity of cortical areas are related to high mean functional connectivity, and provide an account of how these dynamics with some of the properties of avalanches arise. These discoveries help to advance our understanding of cortical operation in health, and in some mental disorders including schizophrenia.
© 2021 The Authors. Human Brain Mapping published by Wiley Periodicals LLC.