Hugo Richard, Luigi Gresele, Aapo Hyvarinen, Bertrand Thirion, Alexandre Gramfort, Pierre Ablin
Group studies involving large cohorts of subjects are important to draw general conclusions about brain functional organization. However, the aggregation of data coming from multiple subjects is challenging, since it requires accounting for large variability in anatomy, functional topography and stimulus response across individuals. Data modeling is especially hard for ecologically relevant conditions such as movie watching, where the experimental setup does not imply well-defined cognitive operations. We propose a novel MultiView Independent Component Analysis (ICA) model for group studies, where data from each subject are modeled as a linear combination of shared independent sources plus noise. Contrary to most group-ICA procedures, the likelihood of the model is available in closed form. We develop an alternate quasi-Newton method for maximizing the likelihood, which is robust and converges quickly. We demonstrate the usefulness of our approach first on fMRI data, where our model demonstrates improved sensitivity in identifying common sources among subjects. Moreover, the sources recovered by our model exhibit lower between-sessions variability than other methods. On magnetoencephalography (MEG) data, our method yields more accurate source localization on phantom data. Applied on 200 subjects from the Cam-CAN dataset, it reveals a clear sequence of evoked activity in sensor and source space.