MiS Preprint Repository

We have decided to discontinue the publication of preprints on our preprint server as of 1 March 2024. The publication culture within mathematics has changed so much due to the rise of repositories such as ArXiV ( that we are encouraging all institute members to make their preprints available there. An institute's repository in its previous form is, therefore, unnecessary. The preprints published to date will remain available here, but we will not add any new preprints here.

MiS Preprint

Graph Ricci Curvatures Reveal Disease-related Changes in Autism Spectrum Disorder

Pavithra Elumalai, Yasharth Yadav, Nitin Williams, Emil Saucan, Jürgen Jost and Areejit Samal


Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a set of neurodevelopmental disorders that pose a significant global health burden. Measures from graph theory have been used to characterise ASD-related changes in resting-state fMRI functional connectivity networks (FCNs), but recently developed geometry-inspired measures have not been applied so far. In this study, we applied geometry-inspired graph Ricci curvatures to investigate ASD-related changes in resting-state fMRI FCNs. To do this, we applied Forman-Ricci and Ollivier-Ricci curvatures to compare networks of ASD and healthy controls (N = 1112) from the Autism Brain Imaging Data Exchange I (ABIDE-I) dataset. We performed these comparisons at the brain-wide level as well as at the level of individual brain regions, and further, determined the behavioral relevance of region-specific differences with Neurosynth meta-analysis decoding. We found brain-wide ASD-related differences for both Forman-Ricci and Ollivier-Ricci curvatures. For Forman-Ricci curvature, these differences were distributed across 83 of the 200 brain regions studied, and concentrated within the Default Mode, Somatomotor and Ventral Attention Network. Meta-analysis decoding identified the brain regions showing curvature differences as involved in social cognition, memory, language and movement. Notably, comparison with results from previous non-invasive stimulation (TMS/tDCS) experiments revealed that the set of brain regions showing curvature differences overlapped with the set of brain regions whose stimulation resulted in positive cognitive or behavioural outcomes in ASD patients. These results underscore the utility of geometry-inspired graph Ricci curvatures in characterising disease-related changes in ASD, and possibly, other neurodevelopmental disorders.

resting-state fMRI, ASD, functional connectivity networks, Forman-Ricci Curvature, TMS, tDCS

Related publications

2022 Journal Open Access
Pavithra Elumalai, Yasharth Yadav, Nitin Williams, Emil Saucan, Jürgen Jost and Areejit Samal

Graph Ricci curvatures reveal atypical functional connectivity in autism spectrum disorder

In: Scientific reports, 12 (2022), p. 8295