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Cogn Neurodyn. 2013 Jun;7(3):237-52. doi: 10.1007/s11571-012-9233-x. Epub 2012 Dec 12.

Synchronization of neuron population subject to steady DC electric field induced by magnetic stimulation.

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  • 1School of Electrical Engineering and Automation, Tianjin University, Tianjin, 300072 People's Republic of China.


Electric fields, which are ubiquitous in the context of neurons, are induced either by external electromagnetic fields or by endogenous electric activities. Clinical evidences point out that magnetic stimulation can induce an electric field that modulates rhythmic activity of special brain tissue, which are associated with most brain functions, including normal and pathological physiological mechanisms. Recently, the studies about the relationship between clinical treatment for psychiatric disorders and magnetic stimulation have been investigated extensively. However, further development of these techniques is limited due to the lack of understanding of the underlying mechanisms supporting the interaction between the electric field induced by magnetic stimulus and brain tissue. In this paper, the effects of steady DC electric field induced by magnetic stimulation on the coherence of an interneuronal network are investigated. Different behaviors have been observed in the network with different topologies (i.e., random and small-world network, modular network). It is found that the coherence displays a peak or a plateau when the induced electric field varies between the parameter range we defined. The coherence of the neuronal systems depends extensively on the network structure and parameters. All these parameters play a key role in determining the range for the induced electric field to synchronize network activities. The presented results could have important implications for the scientific theoretical studies regarding the effects of magnetic stimulation on human brain.


Magnetic stimulation; Steady DC electric field; Synchronization; Topology

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