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Neuroimage. 2016 Jun;133:294-301. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2016.02.080. Epub 2016 Mar 11.

Oscillatory phase modulates the timing of neuronal activations and resulting behavior.

Author information

1
National Center for Adaptive Neurotechnologies, Wadsworth Center, New York State Department of Health, Albany, NY, USA; Department of Biomedical Sciences, State University of New York at Albany, Albany, NY, USA. Electronic address: wcoon@neurotechcenter.org.
2
National Center for Adaptive Neurotechnologies, Wadsworth Center, New York State Department of Health, Albany, NY, USA; J. Crayton Pruitt Family Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL, USA. Electronic address: agunduz@bme.ufl.edu.
3
National Center for Adaptive Neurotechnologies, Wadsworth Center, New York State Department of Health, Albany, NY, USA; Department of Neurology, Albany Medical College, Albany, NY, USA. Electronic address: pbrunner@neurotechenter.org.
4
Department of Neurology, Albany Medical College, Albany, NY, USA. Electronic address: ritacca@mail.amc.edu.
5
Center for Neural Science, New York University, New York, NY, USA. Electronic address: bijan@nyu.edu.
6
National Center for Adaptive Neurotechnologies, Wadsworth Center, New York State Department of Health, Albany, NY, USA; Department of Biomedical Sciences, State University of New York at Albany, Albany, NY, USA; Department of Neurology, Albany Medical College, Albany, NY, USA. Electronic address: gschalk@neurotechcenter.org.

Abstract

Human behavioral response timing is highly variable from trial to trial. While it is generally understood that behavioral variability must be due to trial-by-trial variations in brain function, it is still largely unknown which physiological mechanisms govern the timing of neural activity as it travels through networks of neuronal populations, and how variations in the timing of neural activity relate to variations in the timing of behavior. In our study, we submitted recordings from the cortical surface to novel analytic techniques to chart the trajectory of neuronal population activity across the human cortex in single trials, and found joint modulation of the timing of this activity and of consequent behavior by neuronal oscillations in the alpha band (8-12Hz). Specifically, we established that the onset of population activity tends to occur during the trough of oscillatory activity, and that deviations from this preferred relationship are related to changes in the timing of population activity and the speed of the resulting behavioral response. These results indicate that neuronal activity incurs variable delays as it propagates across neuronal populations, and that the duration of each delay is a function of the instantaneous phase of oscillatory activity. We conclude that the results presented in this paper are supportive of a general model for variability in the effective speed of information transmission in the human brain and for variability in the timing of human behavior.

KEYWORDS:

Broadband gamma; Electrocorticography (ECoG); Oscillations; Reaction time

PMID:
26975551
PMCID:
PMC4889525
DOI:
10.1016/j.neuroimage.2016.02.080
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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