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J Neurosci Methods. 2006 Oct 15;157(1):39-47. Epub 2006 May 3.

Detection of nonlinear event-related potentials.

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Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, LSU Health Sciences Center, P.O. Box 33932, Shreveport, LA 71130-3932, USA.


The methods used to evaluate event-related potentials (ERPs) are generally insensitive to nonlinear responses. Our goal was to show that nonlinear ERPs could be detected using recurrence analysis (RA). When fixed-phase sine signals were added to baseline electroencephalograms (EEGs), the added linear determinism was detected by signal averaging, as expected, and by RA. However, when nonlinear determinism was simulated by adding either random-phase sine or Lorenz signals, the added signals were detected only by RA. Auditory evoked potentials (AEPs) were studied in five subjects using RA. We detected not only the characteristic linear effects caused by onset and offset of the sound, but also nonlinear AEPs not previously reported; they occurred at 473-661 ms after onset, and 282-602 ms after offset, depending on the subject. In five other subjects we found nonlinear magnetosensory evoked potentials; they occurred at 209-354 ms after field onset, depending on the subject. RA was less sensitive than time averaging for detecting linear ERPs, but had the advantage of being able to detect nonlinear ERPs.

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