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Sample records for human somatosensory cortex

  1. Frequency specific modulation of human somatosensory cortex

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    Matteo eFeurra

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Oscillatory neuronal activities are commonly observed in response to sensory stimulation. However, their functional roles are still the subject of debate. One way to probe the roles of oscillatory neural activities is to deliver alternating current to the cortex at biologically relevant frequencies and examine whether such stimulation influences perception and cognition. In this study, we tested whether transcranial alternating current stimulation (tACS over the primary somatosensory cortex (SI could elicit tactile sensations in humans in a frequency dependent manner. We tested the effectiveness of tACS over SI at frequency bands ranging from 2 to 70 Hz. Our results show that stimulation in alpha (10-14 Hz and high gamma (52-70 Hz frequency range produces a tactile sensation in the contralateral hand. A weaker effect was also observed for beta (16-20 Hz stimulation. These findings highlight the frequency-dependency of effective tACS over SI with the effective frequencies corresponding to those observed in previous EEG/MEG studies of tactile perception. Our present study suggests that tACS could be used as a powerful online stimulation technique to reveal the causal roles of oscillatory brain activities.

  2. Reorganization of the Human Somatosensory Cortex in Hand Dystonia

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    Maria Jose Catalan

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Background and Purpose: Abnormalities of finger representations in the somatosensory cortex have been identified in patients with focal hand dystonia. Measuring blood flow with positron emission tomography (PET can be use to demonstrate functional localization of receptive fields. Methods: A vibratory stimulus was applied to the right thumb and little finger of six healthy volunteers and six patients with focal hand dystonia to map their receptive fields using H215O PET. Results: The cortical finger representations in the primary somatosensory cortex were closer to each other in patients than in normal subjects. No abnormalities were found in secondary somatosensory cortex, but the somatotopy there is less well distinguished. Conclusions: These data confirm prior electrophysiological and functional neuroimaging observations showing abnormalities of finger representations in somatosensory cortex of patients with focal hand dystonia.

  3. Intraoperative intrinsic optical imaging of human somatosensory cortex during neurosurgical operations.

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    Sato, Katsushige; Nariai, Tadashi; Momose-Sato, Yoko; Kamino, Kohtaro

    2017-07-01

    Intrinsic optical imaging as developed by Grinvald et al. is a powerful technique for monitoring neural function in the in vivo central nervous system. The advent of this dye-free imaging has also enabled us to monitor human brain function during neurosurgical operations. We briefly describe our own experience in functional mapping of the human somatosensory cortex, carried out using intraoperative optical imaging. The maps obtained demonstrate new additional evidence of a hierarchy for sensory response patterns in the human primary somatosensory cortex.

  4. Human perception of electrical stimulation on the surface of somatosensory cortex.

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    Shivayogi V Hiremath

    Full Text Available Recent advancement in electrocorticography (ECoG-based brain-computer interface technology has sparked a new interest in providing somatosensory feedback using ECoG electrodes, i.e., cortical surface electrodes. We conducted a 28-day study of cortical surface stimulation in an individual with arm paralysis due to brachial plexus injury to examine the sensation produced by electrical stimulation of the somatosensory cortex. A high-density ECoG grid was implanted over the somatosensory and motor cortices. Stimulation through cortical surface electrodes over the somatosensory cortex successfully elicited arm and hand sensations in our participant with chronic paralysis. There were three key findings. First, the intensity of perceived sensation increased monotonically with both pulse amplitude and pulse frequency. Second, changing pulse width changed the type of sensation based on qualitative description provided by the human participant. Third, the participant could distinguish between stimulation applied to two neighboring cortical surface electrodes, 4.5 mm center-to-center distance, for three out of seven electrode pairs tested. Taken together, we found that it was possible to modulate sensation intensity, sensation type, and evoke sensations across a range of locations from the fingers to the upper arm using different stimulation electrodes even in an individual with chronic impairment of somatosensory function. These three features are essential to provide effective somatosensory feedback for neuroprosthetic applications.

  5. Encoding of Touch Intensity But Not Pleasantness in Human Primary Somatosensory Cortex

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    Laubacher, Claire M.; Olausson, Håkan; Wang, Binquan; Spagnolo, Primavera A.; Bushnell, M. Catherine

    2016-01-01

    Growing interest in affective touch has delineated a neural network that bypasses primary somatosensory cortex (S1). Several recent studies, however, have cast doubt on the segregation of touch discrimination and affect, suggesting that S1 also encodes affective qualities. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) to examine the role of S1 in processing touch intensity and pleasantness. Twenty-six healthy human adults rated brushing on the hand during fMRI. Intensity ratings significantly predicted activation in S1, whereas pleasantness ratings predicted activation only in the anterior cingulate cortex. Nineteen subjects also received inhibitory rTMS over right hemisphere S1 and the vertex (control). After S1 rTMS, but not after vertex rTMS, sensory discrimination was reduced and subjects with reduced sensory discrimination rated touch as more intense. In contrast, rTMS did not alter ratings of touch pleasantness. Our findings support divergent neural processing of touch intensity and pleasantness, with affective touch encoded outside of S1. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Growing interest in affective touch has identified a neural network that bypasses primary somatosensory cortex (S1). Several recent studies, however, cast doubt on the separation of touch discrimination and affect. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging and repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation to demonstrate the representation of touch discrimination and intensity in S1, but the representation of pleasantness in the anterior cingulate cortex, not S1. Our findings support divergent neural processing of touch intensity and pleasantness, with affective touch encoded outside of S1. Our study contributes to growing delineation of the affective touch system, a crucial step in understanding its dysregulation in numerous clinical conditions such as autism, eating disorders, depression, and chronic pain. PMID:27225773

  6. Direct electrical stimulation of human cortex evokes high gamma activity that predicts conscious somatosensory perception

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    Muller, Leah; Rolston, John D.; Fox, Neal P.; Knowlton, Robert; Rao, Vikram R.; Chang, Edward F.

    2018-04-01

    Objective. Direct electrical stimulation (DES) is a clinical gold standard for human brain mapping and readily evokes conscious percepts, yet the neurophysiological changes underlying these percepts are not well understood. Approach. To determine the neural correlates of DES, we stimulated the somatosensory cortex of ten human participants at frequency-amplitude combinations that both elicited and failed to elicit conscious percepts, meanwhile recording neural activity directly surrounding the stimulation site. We then compared the neural activity of perceived trials to that of non-perceived trials. Main results. We found that stimulation evokes distributed high gamma activity, which correlates with conscious perception better than stimulation parameters themselves. Significance. Our findings suggest that high gamma activity is a reliable biomarker for perception evoked by both natural and electrical stimuli.

  7. Metaplasticity in human primary somatosensory cortex: effects on physiology and tactile perception.

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    Jones, Christina B; Lulic, Tea; Bailey, Aaron Z; Mackenzie, Tanner N; Mi, Yi Qun; Tommerdahl, Mark; Nelson, Aimee J

    2016-05-01

    Theta-burst stimulation (TBS) over human primary motor cortex evokes plasticity and metaplasticity, the latter contributing to the homeostatic balance of excitation and inhibition. Our knowledge of TBS-induced effects on primary somatosensory cortex (SI) is limited, and it is unknown whether TBS induces metaplasticity within human SI. Sixteen right-handed participants (6 females, mean age 23 yr) received two TBS protocols [continuous TBS (cTBS) and intermittent TBS (iTBS)] delivered in six different combinations over SI in separate sessions. TBS protocols were delivered at 30 Hz and were as follows: a single cTBS protocol, a single iTBS protocol, cTBS followed by cTBS, iTBS followed by iTBS, cTBS followed by iTBS, and iTBS followed by cTBS. Measures included the amplitudes of the first and second somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) via median nerve stimulation, their paired-pulse ratio (PPR), and temporal order judgment (TOJ). Dependent measures were obtained before TBS and at 5, 25, 50, and 90 min following stimulation. Results indicate similar effects following cTBS and iTBS; increased amplitudes of the second SEP and PPR without amplitude changes to SEP 1, and impairments in TOJ. Metaplasticity was observed such that TOJ impairments following a single cTBS protocol were abolished following consecutive cTBS protocols. Additionally, consecutive iTBS protocols altered the time course of effects when compared with a single iTBS protocol. In conclusion, 30-Hz cTBS and iTBS protocols delivered in isolation induce effects consistent with a TBS-induced reduction in intracortical inhibition within SI. Furthermore, cTBS- and iTBS-induced metaplasticity appear to follow homeostatic and nonhomeostatic rules, respectively. Copyright © 2016 the American Physiological Society.

  8. Theta-burst stimulation-induced plasticity over primary somatosensory cortex changes somatosensory temporal discrimination in healthy humans.

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    Antonella Conte

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The somatosensory temporal discrimination threshold (STDT measures the ability to perceive two stimuli as being sequential. Precisely how the single cerebral structures contribute in controlling the STDT is partially known and no information is available about whether STDT can be modulated by plasticity-inducing protocols. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: To investigate how the cortical and cerebellar areas contribute to the STDT we used transcranial magnetic stimulation and a neuronavigation system. We enrolled 18 healthy volunteers and 10 of these completed all the experimental sessions, including the control experiments. STDT was measured on the left hand before and after applying continuous theta-burst stimulation (cTBS on the right primary somatosensory area (S1, pre-supplementary motor area (pre-SMA, right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC and left cerebellar hemisphere. We then investigated whether intermittent theta-burst stimulation (iTBS on the right S1 improved the STDT. After right S1 cTBS, STDT values increased whereas after iTBS to the same cortical site they decreased. cTBS over the DLPFC and left lateral cerebellum left the STDT statistically unchanged. cTBS over the pre-SMA also left the STDT statistically unchanged, but it increased the number of errors subjects made in distinguishing trials testing a single stimulus and those testing paired stimuli. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our findings obtained by applying TBS to the cortical areas involved in processing sensory discrimination show that the STDT is encoded in S1, possibly depends on intrinsic S1 neural circuit properties, and can be modulated by plasticity-inducing TBS protocols delivered over S1. Our findings, giving further insight into mechanisms involved in somatosensory temporal discrimination, help interpret STDT abnormalities in movement disorders including dystonia and Parkinson's disease.

  9. Theta-Burst Stimulation-Induced Plasticity over Primary Somatosensory Cortex Changes Somatosensory Temporal Discrimination in Healthy Humans

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    Conte, Antonella; Rocchi, Lorenzo; Nardella, Andrea; Dispenza, Sabrina; Scontrini, Alessandra; Khan, Nashaba; Berardelli, Alfredo

    2012-01-01

    Background The somatosensory temporal discrimination threshold (STDT) measures the ability to perceive two stimuli as being sequential. Precisely how the single cerebral structures contribute in controlling the STDT is partially known and no information is available about whether STDT can be modulated by plasticity-inducing protocols. Methodology/Principal Findings To investigate how the cortical and cerebellar areas contribute to the STDT we used transcranial magnetic stimulation and a neuronavigation system. We enrolled 18 healthy volunteers and 10 of these completed all the experimental sessions, including the control experiments. STDT was measured on the left hand before and after applying continuous theta-burst stimulation (cTBS) on the right primary somatosensory area (S1), pre-supplementary motor area (pre-SMA), right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) and left cerebellar hemisphere. We then investigated whether intermittent theta-burst stimulation (iTBS) on the right S1 improved the STDT. After right S1 cTBS, STDT values increased whereas after iTBS to the same cortical site they decreased. cTBS over the DLPFC and left lateral cerebellum left the STDT statistically unchanged. cTBS over the pre-SMA also left the STDT statistically unchanged, but it increased the number of errors subjects made in distinguishing trials testing a single stimulus and those testing paired stimuli. Conclusions/Significance Our findings obtained by applying TBS to the cortical areas involved in processing sensory discrimination show that the STDT is encoded in S1, possibly depends on intrinsic S1 neural circuit properties, and can be modulated by plasticity-inducing TBS protocols delivered over S1. Our findings, giving further insight into mechanisms involved in somatosensory temporal discrimination, help interpret STDT abnormalities in movement disorders including dystonia and Parkinson's disease. PMID:22412964

  10. Detection of optogenetic stimulation in somatosensory cortex by non-human primates--towards artificial tactile sensation.

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    May, Travis; Ozden, Ilker; Brush, Benjamin; Borton, David; Wagner, Fabien; Agha, Naubahar; Sheinberg, David L; Nurmikko, Arto V

    2014-01-01

    Neuroprosthesis research aims to enable communication between the brain and external assistive devices while restoring lost functionality such as occurs from stroke, spinal cord injury or neurodegenerative diseases. In future closed-loop sensorimotor prostheses, one approach is to use neuromodulation as direct stimulus to the brain to compensate for a lost sensory function and help the brain to integrate relevant information for commanding external devices via, e.g. movement intention. Current neuromodulation techniques rely mainly of electrical stimulation. Here we focus specifically on the question of eliciting a biomimetically relevant sense of touch by direct stimulus of the somatosensory cortex by introducing optogenetic techniques as an alternative to electrical stimulation. We demonstrate that light activated opsins can be introduced to target neurons in the somatosensory cortex of non-human primates and be optically activated to create a reliably detected sensation which the animal learns to interpret as a tactile sensation localized within the hand. The accomplishment highlighted here shows how optical stimulation of a relatively small group of mostly excitatory somatosensory neurons in the nonhuman primate brain is sufficient for eliciting a useful sensation from data acquired by simultaneous electrophysiology and from behavioral metrics. In this first report to date on optically neuromodulated behavior in the somatosensory cortex of nonhuman primates we do not yet dissect the details of the sensation the animals exerience or contrast it to those evoked by electrical stimulation, issues of considerable future interest.

  11. Detection of optogenetic stimulation in somatosensory cortex by non-human primates--towards artificial tactile sensation.

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    Travis May

    Full Text Available Neuroprosthesis research aims to enable communication between the brain and external assistive devices while restoring lost functionality such as occurs from stroke, spinal cord injury or neurodegenerative diseases. In future closed-loop sensorimotor prostheses, one approach is to use neuromodulation as direct stimulus to the brain to compensate for a lost sensory function and help the brain to integrate relevant information for commanding external devices via, e.g. movement intention. Current neuromodulation techniques rely mainly of electrical stimulation. Here we focus specifically on the question of eliciting a biomimetically relevant sense of touch by direct stimulus of the somatosensory cortex by introducing optogenetic techniques as an alternative to electrical stimulation. We demonstrate that light activated opsins can be introduced to target neurons in the somatosensory cortex of non-human primates and be optically activated to create a reliably detected sensation which the animal learns to interpret as a tactile sensation localized within the hand. The accomplishment highlighted here shows how optical stimulation of a relatively small group of mostly excitatory somatosensory neurons in the nonhuman primate brain is sufficient for eliciting a useful sensation from data acquired by simultaneous electrophysiology and from behavioral metrics. In this first report to date on optically neuromodulated behavior in the somatosensory cortex of nonhuman primates we do not yet dissect the details of the sensation the animals exerience or contrast it to those evoked by electrical stimulation, issues of considerable future interest.

  12. Human umbilical cord blood cells restore brain damage induced changes in rat somatosensory cortex.

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    Maren Geissler

    Full Text Available Intraperitoneal transplantation of human umbilical cord blood (hUCB cells has been shown to reduce sensorimotor deficits after hypoxic ischemic brain injury in neonatal rats. However, the neuronal correlate of the functional recovery and how such a treatment enforces plastic remodelling at the level of neural processing remains elusive. Here we show by in-vivo recordings that hUCB cells have the capability of ameliorating the injury-related impairment of neural processing in primary somatosensory cortex. Intact cortical processing depends on a delicate balance of inhibitory and excitatory transmission, which is disturbed after injury. We found that the dimensions of cortical maps and receptive fields, which are significantly altered after injury, were largely restored. Additionally, the lesion induced hyperexcitability was no longer observed in hUCB treated animals as indicated by a paired-pulse behaviour resembling that observed in control animals. The beneficial effects on cortical processing were reflected in an almost complete recovery of sensorimotor behaviour. Our results demonstrate that hUCB cells reinstall the way central neurons process information by normalizing inhibitory and excitatory processes. We propose that the intermediate level of cortical processing will become relevant as a new stage to investigate efficacy and mechanisms of cell therapy in the treatment of brain injury.

  13. Regional structural differences across functionally parcellated Brodmann areas of human primary somatosensory cortex.

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    Sánchez-Panchuelo, Rosa-María; Besle, Julien; Mougin, Olivier; Gowland, Penny; Bowtell, Richard; Schluppeck, Denis; Francis, Susan

    2014-06-01

    Ultra-high-field (UHF) MRI is ideally suited for structural and functional imaging of the brain. High-resolution structural MRI can be used to map the anatomical boundaries between functional domains of the brain by identifying changes related to the pattern of myelination within cortical gray matter, opening up the possibility to study the relationship between functional domains and underlying structure in vivo. In a recent study, we demonstrated the correspondence between functional (based on retinotopic mapping) and structural (based on changes in T2(⁎)-weighted images linked to myelination) parcellations of the primary visual cortex (V1) in vivo at 7T (Sanchez-Panchuelo et al., 2012b). Here, we take advantage of the improved BOLD CNR and high spatial resolution achievable at 7T to study regional structural variations across the functionally defined areas within the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) in individual subjects. Using a traveling wave fMRI paradigm to map the internal somatotopic representation of the index, middle, and ring fingers in S1, we were able to identify multiple map reversals at the tip and base, corresponding to the boundaries between Brodmann areas 3a, 3b, 1 and 2. Based on high resolution structural MRI data acquired in the same subjects, we inspected these functionally-parcellated Brodmann areas for differences in cortical thickness and MR contrast measures (magnetization transfer ratio (MTR) and signal intensity in phase sensitive inversion recovery (PSIR) images) that are sensitive to myelination. Consistent area-related differences in cortical thickness and MTR/PSIR measurements were found across subjects. However these measures did not have sufficient sensitivity to allow definition of areal boundaries. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Discriminability of Single and Multichannel Intracortical Microstimulation within Somatosensory Cortex

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    Cynthia Kay Overstreet

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available The addition of tactile and proprioceptive feedback to neuroprosthetic limbs is expected to significantly improve the control of these devices. Intracortical microstimulation (ICMS of somatosensory cortex is a promising method of delivering this sensory feedback. To date, the main focus of somatosensory ICMS studies has been to deliver discriminable signals, corresponding to varying intensity, to a single location in cortex. However, multiple independent and simultaneous streams of sensory information will need to be encoded by ICMS to provide functionally relevant feedback for a neuroprosthetic limb (e.g. encoding contact events and pressure on multiple digits.In this study, we evaluated the ability of an awake, behaving non-human primate (Macaca mulatta to discriminate ICMS stimuli delivered on multiple electrodes spaced within somatosensory cortex. We delivered serial stimulation on single electrodes to evaluate the discriminability of sensations corresponding to ICMS of distinct cortical locations. Additionally, we delivered trains of multichannel stimulation, derived from a tactile sensor, synchronously across multiple electrodes. Our results indicate that discrimination of multiple ICMS stimuli is a challenging task, but that discriminable sensory percepts can be elicited by both single and multichannel ICMS on electrodes spaced within somatosensory cortex.

  15. Prefrontal cortex and somatosensory cortex in tactile crossmodal association: an independent component analysis of ERP recordings.

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    Yixuan Ku

    2007-08-01

    Full Text Available Our previous studies on scalp-recorded event-related potentials (ERPs showed that somatosensory N140 evoked by a tactile vibration in working memory tasks was enhanced when human subjects expected a coming visual stimulus that had been paired with the tactile stimulus. The results suggested that such enhancement represented the cortical activities involved in tactile-visual crossmodal association. In the present study, we further hypothesized that the enhancement represented the neural activities in somatosensory and frontal cortices in the crossmodal association. By applying independent component analysis (ICA to the ERP data, we found independent components (ICs located in the medial prefrontal cortex (around the anterior cingulate cortex, ACC and the primary somatosensory cortex (SI. The activity represented by the IC in SI cortex showed enhancement in expectation of the visual stimulus. Such differential activity thus suggested the participation of SI cortex in the task-related crossmodal association. Further, the coherence analysis and the Granger causality spectral analysis of the ICs showed that SI cortex appeared to cooperate with ACC in attention and perception of the tactile stimulus in crossmodal association. The results of our study support with new evidence an important idea in cortical neurophysiology: higher cognitive operations develop from the modality-specific sensory cortices (in the present study, SI cortex that are involved in sensation and perception of various stimuli.

  16. Adaptation in human somatosensory cortex as a model of sensory memory construction: a study using high-density EEG.

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    Bradley, Claire; Joyce, Niamh; Garcia-Larrea, Luis

    2016-01-01

    Adaptation in sensory cortices has been seen as a mechanism allowing the creation of transient memory representations. Here we tested the adapting properties of early responses in human somatosensory areas SI and SII by analysing somatosensory-evoked potentials over the very first repetitions of a stimulus. SI and SII generators were identified by well-defined scalp potentials and source localisation from high-density 128-channel EEG. Earliest responses (~20 ms) from area 3b in the depth of the post-central gyrus did not show significant adaptation to stimuli repeated at 300 ms intervals. In contrast, responses around 45 ms from the crown of the gyrus (areas 1 and 2) rapidly lessened to a plateau and abated at the 20th stimulation, and activities from SII in the parietal operculum at ~100 ms displayed strong adaptation with a steady amplitude decrease from the first repetition. Although responses in both SI (1-2) and SII areas showed adapting properties and hence sensory memory capacities, evidence of sensory mismatch detection has been demonstrated only for responses reflecting SII activation. This may index the passage from an early form of sensory storage in SI to more operational memory codes in SII, allowing the prediction of forthcoming input and the triggering of a specific signal when such input differs from the previous sequence. This is consistent with a model whereby the length of temporal receptive windows increases with progression in the cortical hierarchy, in parallel with the complexity and abstraction of neural representations.

  17. Within-digit functional parcellation of Brodmann areas of the human primary somatosensory cortex using functional magnetic resonance imaging at 7 tesla.

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    Sanchez-Panchuelo, Rosa M; Besle, Julien; Beckett, Alex; Bowtell, Richard; Schluppeck, Denis; Francis, Susan

    2012-11-07

    The primary somatosensory cortex (S1) can be subdivided cytoarchitectonically into four distinct Brodmann areas (3a, 3b, 1, and 2), but these areas have never been successfully delineated in vivo in single human subjects. Here, we demonstrate the functional parcellation of four areas of S1 in individual human subjects based on high-resolution functional MRI measurements made at 7 T using vibrotactile stimulation. By stimulating four sites along the length of the index finger, we were able to identify and locate map reversals of the base to tip representation of the index finger in S1. We suggest that these reversals correspond to the areal borders between the mirrored representations in the four Brodmann areas, as predicted from electrophysiology measurements in nonhuman primates. In all subjects, maps were highly reproducible across scanning sessions and stable over weeks. In four of the six subjects scanned, four, mirrored, within-finger somatotopic maps defining the extent of the Brodmann areas could be directly observed on the cortical surface. In addition, by using multivariate classification analysis, the location of stimulation on the index finger (four distinct sites) could be decoded with a mean accuracy of 65% across subjects. Our measurements thus show that within-finger topography is present at the millimeter scale in the cortex and is highly reproducible. The ability to identify functional areas of S1 in vivo in individual subjects will provide a framework for investigating more complex aspects of tactile representation in S1.

  18. Postictal inhibition of the somatosensory cortex

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    Beniczky, Sándor; Jovanovic, Marina; Atkins, Mary Doreen

    2011-01-01

    Transient suppression of the motor cortex and of the speech areas cause well-described postictal phenomena following seizures involving the respective cortical areas. Pain is a rare symptom in epileptic seizures. We present a patient with painful tonic seizures in the left leg. The amplitude...

  19. Volumetric localization of somatosensory cortex in children using synthetic aperture magnetometry

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    Xiang, Jing; Holowka, Stephanie; Chuang, Sylvester; Sharma, Rohit; Hunjan, Amrita; Otsubo, Hiroshi

    2003-01-01

    Magnetic signal from the human brain can be measured noninvasively by using magnetoencephalography (MEG). This study was designed to localize and reconstruct the neuromagnetic activity in the somatosensory cortex in children Twenty children were studied using a 151-channel MEG system with electrical stimulation applied to median nerves. Data were analyzed using synthetic aperture magnetometry (SAM). A clear deflection (M1) was clearly identified in 18 children (90%, 18/20). Two frequency bands, 30-60 Hz and 60-120 Hz, were found to be related to somatosensory cortex. Magnetic activity was localized in the posterior bank of the central sulcus in 16 children. The extent of the reconstructed neuromagnetic activity of the left hemisphere was significantly larger than that of the right hemisphere (P<0.01). Somatosensory cortex was accurately localized by using SAM. The extent of the reconstructed neuromagnetic activity suggested that the left hemisphere was the dominant side in the somatosensory system in children. We postulate that the volumetric characteristics of the reconstructed neuromagnetic activity are able to indicate the functionality of the brain. (orig.)

  20. Seeing is not feeling: posterior parietal but not somatosensory cortex engagement during touch observation.

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    Chan, Annie W-Y; Baker, Chris I

    2015-01-28

    Observing touch has been reported to elicit activation in human primary and secondary somatosensory cortices and is suggested to underlie our ability to interpret other's behavior and potentially empathy. However, despite these reports, there are a large number of inconsistencies in terms of the precise topography of activation, the extent of hemispheric lateralization, and what aspects of the stimulus are necessary to drive responses. To address these issues, we investigated the localization and functional properties of regions responsive to observed touch in a large group of participants (n = 40). Surprisingly, even with a lenient contrast of hand brushing versus brushing alone, we did not find any selective activation for observed touch in the hand regions of somatosensory cortex but rather in superior and inferior portions of neighboring posterior parietal cortex, predominantly in the left hemisphere. These regions in the posterior parietal cortex required the presence of both brush and hand to elicit strong responses and showed some selectivity for the form of the object or agent of touch. Furthermore, the inferior parietal region showed nonspecific tactile and motor responses, suggesting some similarity to area PFG in the monkey. Collectively, our findings challenge the automatic engagement of somatosensory cortex when observing touch, suggest mislocalization in previous studies, and instead highlight the role of posterior parietal cortex. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/351468-13$15.00/0.

  1. Structural and functional changes in the somatosensory cortex in euthymic females with bipolar disorder.

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    Minuzzi, Luciano; Syan, Sabrina K; Smith, Mara; Hall, Alexander; Hall, Geoffrey Bc; Frey, Benicio N

    2017-12-01

    Current evidence from neuroimaging data suggests possible dysfunction of the fronto-striatal-limbic circuits in individuals with bipolar disorder. Somatosensory cortical function has been implicated in emotional recognition, risk-taking and affective responses through sensory modalities. This study investigates anatomy and function of the somatosensory cortex in euthymic bipolar women. In total, 68 right-handed euthymic women (bipolar disorder = 32 and healthy controls = 36) between 16 and 45 years of age underwent high-resolution anatomical and functional magnetic resonance imaging during the mid-follicular menstrual phase. The somatosensory cortex was used as a seed region for resting-state functional connectivity analysis. Voxel-based morphometry was used to evaluate somatosensory cortical gray matter volume between groups. We found increased resting-state functional connectivity between the somatosensory cortex and insular cortex, inferior prefrontal gyrus and frontal orbital cortex in euthymic bipolar disorder subjects compared to healthy controls. Voxel-based morphometry analysis showed decreased gray matter in the left somatosensory cortex in the bipolar disorder group. Whole-brain voxel-based morphometry analysis controlled by age did not reveal any additional significant difference between groups. This study is the first to date to evaluate anatomy and function of the somatosensory cortex in a well-characterized sample of euthymic bipolar disorder females. Anatomical and functional changes in the somatosensory cortex in this population might contribute to the pathophysiology of bipolar disorder.

  2. Decoding stimulus features in primate somatosensory cortex during perceptual categorization

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    Alvarez, Manuel; Zainos, Antonio; Romo, Ranulfo

    2015-01-01

    Neurons of the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) respond as functions of frequency or amplitude of a vibrotactile stimulus. However, whether S1 neurons encode both frequency and amplitude of the vibrotactile stimulus or whether each sensory feature is encoded by separate populations of S1 neurons is not known, To further address these questions, we recorded S1 neurons while trained monkeys categorized only one sensory feature of the vibrotactile stimulus: frequency, amplitude, or duration. The results suggest a hierarchical encoding scheme in S1: from neurons that encode all sensory features of the vibrotactile stimulus to neurons that encode only one sensory feature. We hypothesize that the dynamic representation of each sensory feature in S1 might serve for further downstream processing that leads to the monkey’s psychophysical behavior observed in these tasks. PMID:25825711

  3. Four-dimensional maps of the human somatosensory system.

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    Avanzini, Pietro; Abdollahi, Rouhollah O; Sartori, Ivana; Caruana, Fausto; Pelliccia, Veronica; Casaceli, Giuseppe; Mai, Roberto; Lo Russo, Giorgio; Rizzolatti, Giacomo; Orban, Guy A

    2016-03-29

    A fine-grained description of the spatiotemporal dynamics of human brain activity is a major goal of neuroscientific research. Limitations in spatial and temporal resolution of available noninvasive recording and imaging techniques have hindered so far the acquisition of precise, comprehensive four-dimensional maps of human neural activity. The present study combines anatomical and functional data from intracerebral recordings of nearly 100 patients, to generate highly resolved four-dimensional maps of human cortical processing of nonpainful somatosensory stimuli. These maps indicate that the human somatosensory system devoted to the hand encompasses a widespread network covering more than 10% of the cortical surface of both hemispheres. This network includes phasic components, centered on primary somatosensory cortex and neighboring motor, premotor, and inferior parietal regions, and tonic components, centered on opercular and insular areas, and involving human parietal rostroventral area and ventral medial-superior-temporal area. The technique described opens new avenues for investigating the neural basis of all levels of cortical processing in humans.

  4. Posterior insular cortex - a site of vestibular-somatosensory interaction?

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    Baier, Bernhard; Zu Eulenburg, Peter; Best, Christoph; Geber, Christian; Müller-Forell, Wibke; Birklein, Frank; Dieterich, Marianne

    2013-09-01

    Background In previous imaging studies the insular cortex (IC) has been identified as an essential part of the processing of a wide spectrum of perception and sensorimotor integration. Yet, there are no systematic lesion studies in a sufficient number of patients examining whether processing of vestibular and the interaction of somatosensory and vestibular signals take place in the IC. Methods We investigated acute stroke patients with lesions affecting the IC in order to fill this gap. In detail, we explored signs of a vestibular tone imbalance such as the deviation of the subjective visual vertical (SVV). We applied voxel-lesion behaviour mapping analysis in 27 patients with acute unilateral stroke. Results Our data demonstrate that patients with lesions of the posterior IC have an abnormal tilt of SVV. Furthermore, re-analysing data of 20 patients from a previous study, we found a positive correlation between thermal perception contralateral to the stroke and the severity of the SVV tilt. Conclusions We conclude that the IC is a sensory brain region where different modalities might interact.

  5. Rhythm generation through period concatenation in rat somatosensory cortex.

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    Mark A Kramer

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available Rhythmic voltage oscillations resulting from the summed activity of neuronal populations occur in many nervous systems. Contemporary observations suggest that coexistent oscillations interact and, in time, may switch in dominance. We recently reported an example of these interactions recorded from in vitro preparations of rat somatosensory cortex. We found that following an initial interval of coexistent gamma ( approximately 25 ms period and beta2 ( approximately 40 ms period rhythms in the superficial and deep cortical layers, respectively, a transition to a synchronous beta1 ( approximately 65 ms period rhythm in all cortical layers occurred. We proposed that the switch to beta1 activity resulted from the novel mechanism of period concatenation of the faster rhythms: gamma period (25 ms+beta2 period (40 ms = beta1 period (65 ms. In this article, we investigate in greater detail the fundamental mechanisms of the beta1 rhythm. To do so we describe additional in vitro experiments that constrain a biologically realistic, yet simplified, computational model of the activity. We use the model to suggest that the dynamic building blocks (or motifs of the gamma and beta2 rhythms combine to produce a beta1 oscillation that exhibits cross-frequency interactions. Through the combined approach of in vitro experiments and mathematical modeling we isolate the specific components that promote or destroy each rhythm. We propose that mechanisms vital to establishing the beta1 oscillation include strengthened connections between a population of deep layer intrinsically bursting cells and a transition from antidromic to orthodromic spike generation in these cells. We conclude that neural activity in the superficial and deep cortical layers may temporally combine to generate a slower oscillation.

  6. MEG reveals a fast pathway from somatosensory cortex to occipital areas via posterior parietal cortex in a blind subject

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreas A Ioannides

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Cross-modal activity in visual cortex of blind subjects has been reported during performance of variety of non-visual tasks. A key unanswered question is through which pathways non-visual inputs are funneled to the visual cortex. Here we used tomographic analysis of single trial magnetoencephalography (MEG data recorded from one congenitally blind and two sighted subjects after stimulation of the left and right median nerves at three intensities: below sensory threshold, above sensory threshold and above motor threshold; the last sufficient to produce thumb twitching. We identified reproducible brain responses in the primary somatosensory (S1 and motor (M1 cortices at around 20 ms post-stimulus, which were very similar in sighted and blind subjects. Time-frequency analysis revealed strong 45 to 70 Hz activity at latencies of 20 to 50 ms in S1 and M1, and posterior parietal cortex Brodmann areas (BA 7 and 40, which compared to lower frequencies, were substantially more pronounced in the blind than the sighted subjects. Critically, at frequencies from α-band up to 100 Hz we found clear, strong and widespread responses in the visual cortex of the blind subject, which increased with the intensity of the somatosensory stimuli. Time-delayed mutual information (MI revealed that in blind subject the stimulus information is funneled from the early somatosensory to visual cortex through posterior parietal BA 7 and 40, projecting first to visual areas V5 and V3, and eventually V1. The flow of information through this pathway occured in stages characterized by convergence of activations into specific cortical regions. In sighted subjects, no linked activity was found that led from the somatosensory to the visual cortex through any of the studied brain regions. These results provide the first evidence from MEG that in blind subjects, tactile information is routed from primary somatosensory to occipital cortex via the posterior parietal cortex.

  7. MEG reveals a fast pathway from somatosensory cortex to occipital areas via posterior parietal cortex in a blind subject.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ioannides, Andreas A; Liu, Lichan; Poghosyan, Vahe; Saridis, George A; Gjedde, Albert; Ptito, Maurice; Kupers, Ron

    2013-01-01

    Cross-modal activity in visual cortex of blind subjects has been reported during performance of variety of non-visual tasks. A key unanswered question is through which pathways non-visual inputs are funneled to the visual cortex. Here we used tomographic analysis of single trial magnetoencephalography (MEG) data recorded from one congenitally blind and two sighted subjects after stimulation of the left and right median nerves at three intensities: below sensory threshold, above sensory threshold and above motor threshold; the last sufficient to produce thumb twitching. We identified reproducible brain responses in the primary somatosensory (S1) and motor (M1) cortices at around 20 ms post-stimulus, which were very similar in sighted and blind subjects. Time-frequency analysis revealed strong 45-70 Hz activity at latencies of 20-50 ms in S1 and M1, and posterior parietal cortex Brodmann areas (BA) 7 and 40, which compared to lower frequencies, were substantially more pronounced in the blind than the sighted subjects. Critically, at frequencies from α-band up to 100 Hz we found clear, strong, and widespread responses in the visual cortex of the blind subject, which increased with the intensity of the somatosensory stimuli. Time-delayed mutual information (MI) revealed that in blind subject the stimulus information is funneled from the early somatosensory to visual cortex through posterior parietal BA 7 and 40, projecting first to visual areas V5 and V3, and eventually V1. The flow of information through this pathway occurred in stages characterized by convergence of activations into specific cortical regions. In sighted subjects, no linked activity was found that led from the somatosensory to the visual cortex through any of the studied brain regions. These results provide the first evidence from MEG that in blind subjects, tactile information is routed from primary somatosensory to occipital cortex via the posterior parietal cortex.

  8. Beta 2-adrenergic receptors are colocalized and coregulated with whisker barrels in rat somatosensory cortex

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vos, P.; Kaufmann, D.; Hand, P.J.; Wolfe, B.B.

    1990-01-01

    Autoradiography has been used to visualize independently the subtypes of beta-adrenergic receptors in rat somatosensory cortex. Beta 2-adrenergic receptors, but not beta 1-adrenergic receptors colocalize with whisker barrels in this tissue. Thus, each whisker sends a specific multisynaptic pathway to the somatosensory cortex that can be histochemically visualized and only one subtype of beta-adrenergic receptor is specifically associated with this cortical representation. Additionally, neonatal lesion of any or all of the whisker follicles results in loss of the corresponding barrel(s) as shown by histochemical markers. This loss is paralleled by a similar loss in the organization of beta 2-adrenergic receptors in the somatosensory cortex. Other results indicate that these beta 2-adrenergic receptors are not involved in moment-to-moment signal transmission in this pathway and, additionally, are not involved in a gross way in the development of whisker-barrel array

  9. Anatomical and functional properties of the foot and leg representation in areas 3b, 1 and 2 of primary somatosensory cortex in humans: A 7T fMRI study.

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    Akselrod, Michel; Martuzzi, Roberto; Serino, Andrea; van der Zwaag, Wietske; Gassert, Roger; Blanke, Olaf

    2017-10-01

    Primary somatosensory cortex (S1) processes somatosensory information and is composed of multiple subregions. In particular, tactile information from the skin is encoded in three subregions, namely Brodmann areas (BAs) 3b, 1 and 2, with each area representing a complete map of the contralateral body. Although, much is known about the somatotopic organization of the hand in human S1, less research has been carried out regarding the somatotopic maps of the foot and leg in S1. Moreover, a latero-medial S1 organization along the superior part of the postcentral gyrus has been reported when moving from hip to toes, yet to date there is no study investigating leg/foot maps within the different subregions of S1. Using ultra-high field MRI (7T), we mapped six cortical representations of the lower limb (hip to toes) at the single subject level and performed this analysis separately for BAs 3b, 1 and 2. Analyzing the BOLD responses associated with tactile stimulations of the mapped foot and leg regions on each side, we quantified the extent and the strength of activation to determine somatotopic organization. In addition, we investigated whether each mapped representation also responded to the stimulation of other body parts (i.e. response selectivity) and conducted dissimilarity analysis relating these anatomical and functional properties of S1 to the physical structure of the lower limbs. Our data reveal somatotopy for the leg, but not for the foot in all investigated BAs, with large inter-subject variability. We found only minor differences between the properties of the three investigated BAs, suggesting that S1 maps for the lower limbs differ from those described for the hand. We also describe greater extent/strength of S1 activation for the big toe representation (compared to the other mapped representations) within all BAs, suggesting a possible homology between the first digit of upper and lower extremity in humans, and report different patterns of selectivity in the

  10. Inhibitory rTMS applied on somatosensory cortex in Wilson's disease patients with hand dystonia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lozeron, Pierre; Poujois, Aurélia; Meppiel, Elodie; Masmoudi, Sana; Magnan, Thierry Peron; Vicaut, Eric; Houdart, Emmanuel; Guichard, Jean-Pierre; Trocello, Jean-Marc; Woimant, France; Kubis, Nathalie

    2017-10-01

    Hand dystonia is a common complication of Wilson's disease (WD), responsible for handwriting difficulties and disability. Alteration of sensorimotor integration and overactivity of the somatosensory cortex have been demonstrated in dystonia. This study investigated the immediate after effect of an inhibitory repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) applied over the somatosensory cortex on the writing function in WD patients with hand dystonia. We performed a pilot prospective randomized double-blind sham-controlled crossover rTMS study. A 20-min 1-Hz rTMS session, stereotaxically guided, was applied over the left somatosensory cortex in 13 WD patients with right dystonic writer's cramp. After 3 days, each patient was crossed-over to the alternative treatment. Patients were clinically evaluated before and immediately after each rTMS session with the Unified Wilson's Disease rating scale (UWDRS), the Writers' Cramp Rating Scale (WCRS), a specifically designed scale for handwriting difficulties in Wilson's disease patients (FAR, flow, accuracy, and rhythmicity evaluation), and a visual analog scale (VAS) for handwriting discomfort. No significant change in UWDRS, WCRS, VAS, or FAR scores was observed in patients treated with somatosensory inhibitory rTMS compared to the sham protocol. The FAR negatively correlated with UWDRS (r = -0.6; P = 0.02), but not with the WCRS score, disease duration, MRI diffusion lesions, or with atrophy scores. In our experimental conditions, a single inhibitory rTMS session applied over somatosensory cortex did not improve dystonic writer cramp in WD patients.

  11. MEG reveals a fast pathway from somatosensory cortex to occipital areas via posterior parietal cortex in a blind subject

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ioannides, Andreas A; Liu, Lichan; Poghosyan, Vahe

    2013-01-01

    magnetoencephalography (MEG) data recorded from one congenitally blind and two sighted subjects after stimulation of the left and right median nerves at three intensities: below sensory threshold, above sensory threshold and above motor threshold; the last sufficient to produce thumb twitching. We identified...... reproducible brain responses in the primary somatosensory (S1) and motor (M1) cortices at around 20 ms post-stimulus, which were very similar in sighted and blind subjects. Time-frequency analysis revealed strong 45-70 Hz activity at latencies of 20-50 ms in S1 and M1, and posterior parietal cortex Brodmann...... of information through this pathway occurred in stages characterized by convergence of activations into specific cortical regions. In sighted subjects, no linked activity was found that led from the somatosensory to the visual cortex through any of the studied brain regions. These results provide the first...

  12. U-shaped Relation between Prestimulus Alpha-band and Poststimulus Gamma-band Power in Temporal Tactile Perception in the Human Somatosensory Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wittenberg, Marc André; Baumgarten, Thomas J; Schnitzler, Alfons; Lange, Joachim

    2018-04-01

    Neuronal oscillations are a ubiquitous phenomenon in the human nervous system. Alpha-band oscillations (8-12 Hz) have been shown to correlate negatively with attention and performance, whereas gamma-band oscillations (40-150 Hz) correlate positively. Here, we studied the relation between prestimulus alpha-band power and poststimulus gamma-band power in a suprathreshold tactile discrimination task. Participants received two electrical stimuli to their left index finger with different SOAs (0 msec, 100 msec, intermediate SOA, intermediate SOA ± 10 msec). The intermediate SOA was individually determined so that stimulation was bistable, and participants perceived one stimulus in half of the trials and two stimuli in the other half. We measured neuronal activity with magnetoencephalography (MEG). In trials with intermediate SOAs, behavioral performance correlated inversely with prestimulus alpha-band power but did not correlate with poststimulus gamma-band power. Poststimulus gamma-band power was high in trials with low and high prestimulus alpha-band power and low for intermediate prestimulus alpha-band power (i.e., U-shaped). We suggest that prestimulus alpha activity modulates poststimulus gamma activity and subsequent perception: (1) low prestimulus alpha-band power leads to high poststimulus gamma-band power, biasing perception such that two stimuli were perceived; (2) intermediate prestimulus alpha-band power leads to low gamma-band power (interpreted as inefficient stimulus processing), consequently, perception was not biased in either direction; and (3) high prestimulus alpha-band power leads to high poststimulus gamma-band power, biasing perception such that only one stimulus was perceived.

  13. More than skin deep: body representation beyond primary somatosensory cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Longo, Matthew R; Azañón, Elena; Haggard, Patrick

    2010-02-01

    The neural circuits underlying initial sensory processing of somatic information are relatively well understood. In contrast, the processes that go beyond primary somatosensation to create more abstract representations related to the body are less clear. In this review, we focus on two classes of higher-order processing beyond somatosensation. Somatoperception refers to the process of perceiving the body itself, and particularly of ensuring somatic perceptual constancy. We review three key elements of somatoperception: (a) remapping information from the body surface into an egocentric reference frame, (b) exteroceptive perception of objects in the external world through their contact with the body, and (c) interoceptive percepts about the nature and state of the body itself. Somatorepresentation, in contrast, refers to the essentially cognitive process of constructing semantic knowledge and attitudes about the body, including: (d) lexical-semantic knowledge about bodies generally and one's own body specifically, (e) configural knowledge about the structure of bodies, (f) emotions and attitudes directed towards one's own body, and (g) the link between physical body and psychological self. We review a wide range of neuropsychological, neuroimaging and neurophysiological data to explore the dissociation between these different aspects of higher somatosensory function. 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Asymmetric multisensory interactions of visual and somatosensory responses in a region of the rat parietal cortex.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael T Lippert

    Full Text Available Perception greatly benefits from integrating multiple sensory cues into a unified percept. To study the neural mechanisms of sensory integration, model systems are required that allow the simultaneous assessment of activity and the use of techniques to affect individual neural processes in behaving animals. While rodents qualify for these requirements, little is known about multisensory integration and areas involved for this purpose in the rodent. Using optical imaging combined with laminar electrophysiological recordings, the rat parietal cortex was identified as an area where visual and somatosensory inputs converge and interact. Our results reveal similar response patterns to visual and somatosensory stimuli at the level of current source density (CSD responses and multi-unit responses within a strip in parietal cortex. Surprisingly, a selective asymmetry was observed in multisensory interactions: when the somatosensory response preceded the visual response, supra-linear summation of CSD was observed, but the reverse stimulus order resulted in sub-linear effects in the CSD. This asymmetry was not present in multi-unit activity however, which showed consistently sub-linear interactions. These interactions were restricted to a specific temporal window, and pharmacological tests revealed significant local intra-cortical contributions to this phenomenon. Our results highlight the rodent parietal cortex as a system to model the neural underpinnings of multisensory processing in behaving animals and at the cellular level.

  15. Abnormal activation of the primary somatosensory cortex in spasmodic dysphonia: an fMRI study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simonyan, Kristina; Ludlow, Christy L

    2010-11-01

    Spasmodic dysphonia (SD) is a task-specific focal dystonia of unknown pathophysiology, characterized by involuntary spasms in the laryngeal muscles during speaking. Our aim was to identify symptom-specific functional brain activation abnormalities in adductor spasmodic dysphonia (ADSD) and abductor spasmodic dysphonia (ABSD). Both SD groups showed increased activation extent in the primary sensorimotor cortex, insula, and superior temporal gyrus during symptomatic and asymptomatic tasks and decreased activation extent in the basal ganglia, thalamus, and cerebellum during asymptomatic tasks. Increased activation intensity in SD patients was found only in the primary somatosensory cortex during symptomatic voice production, which showed a tendency for correlation with ADSD symptoms. Both SD groups had lower correlation of activation intensities between the primary motor and sensory cortices and additional correlations between the basal ganglia, thalamus, and cerebellum during symptomatic and asymptomatic tasks. Compared with ADSD patients, ABSD patients had larger activation extent in the primary sensorimotor cortex and ventral thalamus during symptomatic task and in the inferior temporal cortex and cerebellum during symptomatic and asymptomatic voice production. The primary somatosensory cortex shows consistent abnormalities in activation extent, intensity, correlation with other brain regions, and symptom severity in SD patients and, therefore, may be involved in the pathophysiology of SD.

  16. Anticipation increases tactile stimulus processing in the ipsilateral primary somatosensory cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Ede, Freek; de Lange, Floris P; Maris, Eric

    2014-10-01

    Stimulus anticipation improves perception. To account for this improvement, we investigated how stimulus processing is altered by anticipation. In contrast to a large body of previous work, we employed a demanding perceptual task and investigated sensory responses that occur beyond early evoked activity in contralateral primary sensory areas: Stimulus-induced modulations of neural oscillations. For this, we recorded magnetoencephalography in 19 humans while they performed a cued tactile identification task involving the identification of either a proximal or a distal stimulation on the fingertips. We varied the cue-target interval between 0 and 1000 ms such that tactile targets occurred at various degrees of anticipation. This allowed us to investigate the influence of anticipation on stimulus processing in a parametric fashion. We observed that anticipation increases the stimulus-induced response (suppression of beta-band oscillations) originating from the ipsilateral primary somatosensory cortex. This occurs in the period in which the tactile memory trace is analyzed and is correlated with the anticipation-induced improvement in tactile perception. We propose that this ipsilateral response indicates distributed processing across bilateral primary sensory cortices, of which the extent increases with anticipation. This constitutes a new and potentially important mechanism contributing to perception and its improvement following anticipation. © The Author 2013. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  17. High-order motor cortex in rats receives somatosensory inputs from the primary motor cortex via cortico-cortical pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kunori, Nobuo; Takashima, Ichiro

    2016-12-01

    The motor cortex of rats contains two forelimb motor areas; the caudal forelimb area (CFA) and the rostral forelimb area (RFA). Although the RFA is thought to correspond to the premotor and/or supplementary motor cortices of primates, which are higher-order motor areas that receive somatosensory inputs, it is unknown whether the RFA of rats receives somatosensory inputs in the same manner. To investigate this issue, voltage-sensitive dye (VSD) imaging was used to assess the motor cortex in rats following a brief electrical stimulation of the forelimb. This procedure was followed by intracortical microstimulation (ICMS) mapping to identify the motor representations in the imaged cortex. The combined use of VSD imaging and ICMS revealed that both the CFA and RFA received excitatory synaptic inputs after forelimb stimulation. Further evaluation of the sensory input pathway to the RFA revealed that the forelimb-evoked RFA response was abolished either by the pharmacological inactivation of the CFA or a cortical transection between the CFA and RFA. These results suggest that forelimb-related sensory inputs would be transmitted to the RFA from the CFA via the cortico-cortical pathway. Thus, the present findings imply that sensory information processed in the RFA may be used for the generation of coordinated forelimb movements, which would be similar to the function of the higher-order motor cortex in primates. © 2016 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  18. Spontaneous Fluctuations of PO2 in the Rabbit Somatosensory Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linsenmeier, Robert A; Aksenov, Daniil P; Faber, Holden M; Makar, Peter; Wyrwicz, Alice M

    2016-01-01

    In many tissues, PO2 fluctuates spontaneously with amplitudes of a few mmHg. Here we further characterized these oscillations. PO2 recordings were made from the whisker barrel cortex of six rabbits with acutely or chronically placed polarographic electrodes. Measurements were made while rabbits were awake and while anesthetized with isoflurane, during air breathing, and during 100% oxygen inspiration. In awake rabbits, 90% of the power was between 0 and 20 cycles per minute (cpm), not uniformly distributed over this range, but with a peak frequently near 10 cpm. This was much slower than heart or respiratory rhythms and is similar to the frequency content observed in other tissues. During hyperoxia, total power was higher than during air-breathing, and the dominant frequencies tended to shift toward lower values (0-10 cpm). These observations suggest that at least the lower frequency fluctuations represent efforts by the circulation to regulate local PO2. There were no consistent changes in total power during 0.5 or 1.5% isoflurane anesthesia, but the power shifted to lower frequencies. Thus, both hyperoxia and anesthesia cause characteristic, but distinct, changes in spontaneous fluctuations. These PO2 fluctuations may be caused by vasomotion, but other factors cannot be ruled out.

  19. Age Effect on Automatic Inhibitory Function of the Somatosensory and Motor Cortex: An MEG Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chia-Hsiung Cheng

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Age-related deficiency in the top-down modulation of cognitive inhibition has been extensively documented, whereas the effects of age on a bottom-up or automatic operation of inhibitory function were less investigated. It is unknown that whether the older adults (OA’ reduced behavioral performance and neural responses are due to the insufficient bottom-up processes. Compared to behavioral assessments which have been widely used to examine the top-down control of response inhibition, electrophysiological recordings are more suitable to probe the early-stage processes of automatic inhibitory function. Sensory gating (SG, a phenomenon of attenuated neural response to the second identical stimulus in a paired-pulse paradigm, is an indicator to assess automatic inhibitory function of the sensory cortex. On the other hand, electricity-induced beta rebound oscillation in a single-pulse paradigm reflects cortical inhibition of the motor cortex. From the neurophysiological perspective, SG and beta rebound oscillation are replicable indicators to examine the automatic inhibitory function of human sensorimotor cortices. Thus, the present study aimed to use a whole-head magnetoencephalography (MEG to investigate the age-related alterations of SG function in the primary somatosensory cortex (SI and of beta rebound oscillation in the primary motor cortex (MI in 17 healthy younger and 15 older adults. The Stimulus 2/Stimulus 1 (S2/S1 amplitude ratio in response to the paired-pulse electrical stimulation to the left median nerve was used to evaluate the automatic inhibitory function of SI, and the beta rebound response in the single-pulse paradigm was used to evaluate the automatic inhibitory function of MI. Although there were no significant age-related differences found in the SI SG ratios, the MI beta rebound power was reduced and peak latency was prolonged in the OA. Furthermore, significant association between the SI SG ratio and the MI beta rebound

  20. Age Effect on Automatic Inhibitory Function of the Somatosensory and Motor Cortex: An MEG Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Chia-Hsiung; Lin, Mei-Yin; Yang, Shiou-Han

    2018-01-01

    Age-related deficiency in the top-down modulation of cognitive inhibition has been extensively documented, whereas the effects of age on a bottom-up or automatic operation of inhibitory function were less investigated. It is unknown that whether the older adults (OA)’ reduced behavioral performance and neural responses are due to the insufficient bottom-up processes. Compared to behavioral assessments which have been widely used to examine the top-down control of response inhibition, electrophysiological recordings are more suitable to probe the early-stage processes of automatic inhibitory function. Sensory gating (SG), a phenomenon of attenuated neural response to the second identical stimulus in a paired-pulse paradigm, is an indicator to assess automatic inhibitory function of the sensory cortex. On the other hand, electricity-induced beta rebound oscillation in a single-pulse paradigm reflects cortical inhibition of the motor cortex. From the neurophysiological perspective, SG and beta rebound oscillation are replicable indicators to examine the automatic inhibitory function of human sensorimotor cortices. Thus, the present study aimed to use a whole-head magnetoencephalography (MEG) to investigate the age-related alterations of SG function in the primary somatosensory cortex (SI) and of beta rebound oscillation in the primary motor cortex (MI) in 17 healthy younger and 15 older adults. The Stimulus 2/Stimulus 1 (S2/S1) amplitude ratio in response to the paired-pulse electrical stimulation to the left median nerve was used to evaluate the automatic inhibitory function of SI, and the beta rebound response in the single-pulse paradigm was used to evaluate the automatic inhibitory function of MI. Although there were no significant age-related differences found in the SI SG ratios, the MI beta rebound power was reduced and peak latency was prolonged in the OA. Furthermore, significant association between the SI SG ratio and the MI beta rebound power, which was

  1. Asymmetric Functional Connectivity of the Contra- and Ipsilateral Secondary Somatosensory Cortex during Tactile Object Recognition

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    Yinghua Yu

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available In the somatosensory system, it is well known that the bilateral secondary somatosensory cortex (SII receives projections from the unilateral primary somatosensory cortex (SI, and the SII, in turn, sends feedback projections to SI. Most neuroimaging studies have clearly shown bilateral SII activation using only unilateral stimulation for both anatomical and functional connectivity across SII subregions. However, no study has unveiled differences in the functional connectivity of the contra- and ipsilateral SII network that relates to frontoparietal areas during tactile object recognition. Therefore, we used event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI and a delayed match-to-sample (DMS task to investigate the contributions of bilateral SII during tactile object recognition. In the fMRI experiment, 14 healthy subjects were presented with tactile angle stimuli on their right index finger and asked to encode three sample stimuli during the encoding phase and one test stimulus during the recognition phase. Then, the subjects indicated whether the angle of test stimulus was presented during the encoding phase. The results showed that contralateral (left SII activity was greater than ipsilateral (right SII activity during the encoding phase, but there was no difference during the recognition phase. A subsequent psycho-physiological interaction (PPI analysis revealed distinct connectivity from the contra- and ipsilateral SII to other regions. The left SII functionally connected to the left SI and right primary and premotor cortex, while the right SII functionally connected to the left posterior parietal cortex (PPC. Our findings suggest that in situations involving unilateral tactile object recognition, contra- and ipsilateral SII will induce an asymmetrical functional connectivity to other brain areas, which may occur by the hand contralateral effect of SII.

  2. Glutamate-Mediated Primary Somatosensory Cortex Excitability Correlated with Circulating Copper and Ceruloplasmin

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    Franca Tecchio

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Objective. To verify whether markers of metal homeostasis are related to a magnetoencephalographic index representative of glutamate-mediated excitability of the primary somatosensory cortex. The index is identified as the source strength of the earliest component (M20 of the somatosensory magnetic fields (SEFs evoked by right median nerve stimulation at wrist. Method. Thirty healthy right-handed subjects (51±22 years were enrolled in the study. A source reconstruction algorithm was applied to assess the amount of synchronously activated neurons subtending the M20 and the following SEF component (M30, which is generated by two independent contributions of gabaergic and glutamatergic transmission. Serum copper, ceruloplasmin, iron, transferrin, transferrin saturation, and zinc levels were measured. Results. Total copper and ceruloplasmin negatively correlated with the M20 source strength. Conclusion. This pilot study suggests that higher level of body copper reserve, as marked by ceruloplasmin variations, parallels lower cortical glutamatergic responsiveness.

  3. Weak but Critical Links between Primary Somatosensory Centers and Motor Cortex during Movement

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    Pengxu Wei

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Motor performance is improved by stimulation of the agonist muscle during movement. However, related brain mechanisms remain unknown. In this work, we perform a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI study in 21 healthy subjects under three different conditions: (1 movement of right ankle alone; (2 movement and simultaneous stimulation of the agonist muscle; or (3 movement and simultaneous stimulation of a control area. We constructed weighted brain networks for each condition by using functional connectivity. Network features were analyzed using graph theoretical approaches. We found that: (1 the second condition evokes the strongest and most widespread brain activations (5147 vs. 4419 and 2320 activated voxels; and (2 this condition also induces a unique network layout and changes hubs and the modular structure of the brain motor network by activating the most “silent” links between primary somatosensory centers and the motor cortex, particularly weak links from the thalamus to the left primary motor cortex (M1. Significant statistical differences were found when the strength values of the right cerebellum (P < 0.001 or the left thalamus (P = 0.006 were compared among the three conditions. Over the years, studies reported a small number of projections from the thalamus to the motor cortex. This is the first work to present functions of these pathways. These findings reveal mechanisms for enhancing motor function with somatosensory stimulation, and suggest that network function cannot be thoroughly understood when weak ties are disregarded.

  4. Effects of mastication on human somatosensory processing: A study using somatosensory-evoked potentials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakata, Hiroki; Aoki, Mai; Sakamoto, Kiwako

    2017-04-01

    The aim of the present study was to investigate the effects of mastication on somatosensory processing using somatosensory-evoked potentials (SEPs). Fourteen healthy subjects received a median nerve stimulation at the right wrist under two conditions: Mastication and Control. SEPs were recorded in five sessions for approximately seven minutes: Pre, Post 1, 2, 3, and 4. Subjects were asked to chew gum for five minutes after one session in Mastication. Control included the same five sessions. The amplitudes and latencies of P14, N20, P25, N35, P45, and N60 components at C3', frontal N30 component at Fz, and P100 and N140 components at Pz were analyzed. The amplitude of P45-N60 was significantly smaller at Post 1, 2, 3, and 4 than at Pre in Control, but not in Mastication. The latency of P25 was significantly longer at Post 2, 3, and 4 than at Pre in Control, but not in Mastication. The latency of P100 was significantly longer at Post 2 than at Pre in Control, but not in Mastication. These results suggest the significant effects of mastication on the neural activity of human somatosensory processing. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd and Japan Neuroscience Society. All rights reserved.

  5. The reactivation of somatosensory cortex and behavioral recovery after sensory loss in mature primates

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    Hui-Xin eQi

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available In our experiments, we removed a major source of activation of somatosensory cortex in mature monkeys by unilaterally sectioning the sensory afferents in the dorsal columns of the spinal cord at a high cervical level. At this level, the ascending branches of tactile afferents from the hand are cut, while other branches of these afferents remain intact to terminate on neurons in the dorsal horn of the spinal cord. Immediately after such a lesion, the monkeys seem relatively unimpaired in locomotion and often use the forelimb, but further inspection reveals that they prefer to use the unaffected hand in reaching for food. In addition, systematic testing indicates that they make more errors in retrieving pieces of food, and start using visual inspection of the rotated hand to confirm the success of the grasping of the food. Such difficulties are not surprising as a complete dorsal column lesion totally deactivates the contralateral hand representation in primary somatosensory cortex (area 3b. However, hand use rapidly improves over the first post-lesion weeks, and much of the hand representational territory in contralateral area 3b is reactivated by inputs from the hand in roughly a normal somatotopic pattern. Quantitative measures of single neuron response properties reveal that reactivated neurons respond to tactile stimulation on the hand with high firing rates and only slightly longer latencies. We conclude that preserved dorsal column afferents after nearly complete lesions contribute to the reactivation of cortex and the recovery of the behavior, but second-order sensory pathways in the spinal cord may also play an important role. Our microelectrode recordings indicate that these preserved first-order, and second-order pathways are initially weak and largely ineffective in activating cortex, but they are potentiated during the recovery process. Therapies that would promote this potentiation could usefully enhance recovery after spinal cord

  6. Golgi Analysis of Neuron Morphology in the Presumptive Somatosensory Cortex and Visual Cortex of the Florida Manatee (Trichechus manatus latirostris).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reyes, Laura D; Harland, Tessa; Reep, Roger L; Sherwood, Chet C; Jacobs, Bob

    2016-01-01

    The current study investigates neuron morphology in presumptive primary somatosensory (S1) and primary visual (V1) cortices of the Florida manatee (Trichechus manatus latirostris) as revealed by Golgi impregnation. Sirenians, including manatees, have an aquatic lifestyle, a large body size, and a relatively large lissencephalic brain. The present study examines neuron morphology in 3 cortical areas: in S1, dorsolateral cortex area 1 (DL1) and cluster cortex area 2 (CL2) and in V1, dorsolateral cortex area 4 (DL4). Neurons exhibited a variety of morphological types, with pyramidal neurons being the most common. The large variety of neuron types present in the manatee cortex was comparable to that seen in other eutherian mammals, except for rodents and primates, where pyramid-shaped neurons predominate. A comparison between pyramidal neurons in S1 and V1 indicated relatively greater dendritic branching in S1. Across all 3 areas, the dendritic arborization pattern of pyramidal neurons was also similar to that observed previously in the afrotherian rock hyrax, cetartiodactyls, opossums, and echidnas but did not resemble the widely bifurcated dendrites seen in the large-brained African elephant. Despite adaptations for an aquatic environment, manatees did not share specific neuron types such as tritufted and star-like neurons that have been found in cetaceans. Manatees exhibit an evolutionarily primitive pattern of cortical neuron morphology shared with most other mammals and do not appear to have neuronal specializations for an aquatic niche. © 2016 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  7. Projections of Somatosensory Cortex and Frontal Eye Fields onto Incertotectal Neurons in the Cat

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    Perkins, Eddie; Warren, Susan; Lin, Rick C.-S.; May, Paul J.

    2014-01-01

    The goal of this study was to determine whether the input-output characteristics of the zona incerta (ZI) are appropriate for it to serve as a conduit for cortical control over saccade-related activity in the superior colliculus. The study utilized the neuronal tracers wheat germ agglutinin-horseradish peroxidase (WGA-HRP) and biotinylated dextran amine (BDA) in the cat. Injections of WGA-HRP into primary somatosensory cortex (SI) revealed sparse, widespread nontopographic projections throughout ZI. In addition, region-specific areas of more intense termination were present in ventral ZI, although strict topography was not observed. In comparison, the frontal eye fields (FEF) also projected sparsely throughout ZI, but terminated more heavily, medially, along the border between the two sublaminae. Furthermore, retrogradely labeled incertocortical neurons were observed in both experiments. The relationship of these two cortical projections to incertotectal cells was also directly examined by retrogradely labeling incertotectal cells with WGA-HRP in animals that had also received cortical BDA injections. Labeled axonal arbors from both SI and FEF had thin, sparsely branched axons with numerous en passant boutons. They formed numerous close associations with the somata and dendrites of WGA-HRP-labeled incertotectal cells. In summary, these results indicate that both sensory and motor cortical inputs to ZI display similar morphologies and distributions. In addition, both display close associations with incertotectal cells, suggesting direct synaptic contact. From these data, we conclude that inputs from somatosensory and FEF cortex both play a role in controlling gaze-related activity in the superior colliculus by way of the inhibitory incertotectal projection. PMID:17083121

  8. Cortical plasticity induced by spike-triggered microstimulation in primate somatosensory cortex.

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    Weiguo Song

    Full Text Available Electrical stimulation of the nervous system for therapeutic purposes, such as deep brain stimulation in the treatment of Parkinson's disease, has been used for decades. Recently, increased attention has focused on using microstimulation to restore functions as diverse as somatosensation and memory. However, how microstimulation changes the neural substrate is still not fully understood. Microstimulation may cause cortical changes that could either compete with or complement natural neural processes, and could result in neuroplastic changes rendering the region dysfunctional or even epileptic. As part of our efforts to produce neuroprosthetic devices and to further study the effects of microstimulation on the cortex, we stimulated and recorded from microelectrode arrays in the hand area of the primary somatosensory cortex (area 1 in two awake macaque monkeys. We applied a simple neuroprosthetic microstimulation protocol to a pair of electrodes in the area 1 array, using either random pulses or pulses time-locked to the recorded spiking activity of a reference neuron. This setup was replicated using a computer model of the thalamocortical system, which consisted of 1980 spiking neurons distributed among six cortical layers and two thalamic nuclei. Experimentally, we found that spike-triggered microstimulation induced cortical plasticity, as shown by increased unit-pair mutual information, while random microstimulation did not. In addition, there was an increased response to touch following spike-triggered microstimulation, along with decreased neural variability. The computer model successfully reproduced both qualitative and quantitative aspects of the experimental findings. The physiological findings of this study suggest that even simple microstimulation protocols can be used to increase somatosensory information flow.

  9. Reduced resting state functional connectivity of the somatosensory cortex predicts psychopathological symptoms in women with bulimia nervosa

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    Luca eLavagnino

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available BackgroundAlterations in the resting state functional connectivity (rs-FC of several brain networks have been demonstrated in eating disorders. However, very few studies are currently available on brain network dysfunctions in bulimia nervosa (BN. The somatosensory network is central in processing body-related stimuli and it may be altered in BN. The present study therefore aimed to investigate rs-FC in the somatosensory network in bulimic women. MethodsSixteen medication-free women with BN (age=23±5 years and 18 matched controls (age=23±3 years underwent a functional magnetic resonance resting state scan and assessment of eating disorder symptoms. Within-network and seed-based functional connectivity analyses were conducted to assess rs-FC within the somatosensory network and to other areas of the brain. ResultsBN patients showed a decreased resting state functional connectivity both within the somatosensory network (t=9.0, df=1, P=0.005 and with posterior cingulate cortex (PCC and two visual areas (the right middle occipital gyrus and the right cuneus(P=0.05 corrected for multiple comparison. The region in the right middle occipital gyrus is implicated in body processing and is known as extrastriate body area, or EBA. The rs-FC of the left paracentral lobule with the EBA correlated with psychopathology measures like bulimia (r=-0.4; P=0.02 and interoceptive awareness (r=-0.4; P=0.01. Analyses were conducted using age, BMI (body mass index and depressive symptoms as covariates. ConclusionsOur findings show a specific alteration of the rs-FC of the somatosensory cortex in BN patients, which correlates with eating disorder symptoms. The connectivity between the somatosensory cortex and the EBA might be related to dysfunctions in body image processing. The results should be considered preliminary due to the small sample size.

  10. Rapid-rate paired associative stimulation over the primary somatosensory cortex.

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    Philemon Tsang

    Full Text Available Rapid-rate paired associative stimulation (rPAS involves repeat pairing of peripheral nerve stimulation and Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS pulses at a 5 Hz frequency. RPAS over primary motor cortex (M1 operates with spike-timing dependent plasticity such that increases in corticospinal excitability occur when the nerve and TMS pulse temporally coincide in cortex. The present study investigates the effects of rPAS over primary somatosensory cortex (SI which has not been performed to date. In a series of experiments, rPAS was delivered over SI and M1 at varying timing intervals between the nerve and TMS pulse based on the latency of the N20 somatosensory evoked potential (SEP component within each participant (intervals for SI-rPAS: N20, N20-2.5 ms, N20 + 2.5 ms, intervals for M1-rPAS: N20, N20+5 ms. Changes in SI physiology were measured via SEPs (N20, P25, N20-P25 and SEP paired-pulse inhibition, and changes in M1 physiology were measured with motor evoked potentials and short-latency afferent inhibition. Measures were obtained before rPAS and at 5, 25 and 45 minutes following stimulation. Results indicate that paired-pulse inhibition and short-latency afferent inhibition were reduced only when the SI-rPAS nerve-TMS timing interval was set to N20-2.5 ms. SI-rPAS over SI also led to remote effects on motor physiology over a wider range of nerve-TMS intervals (N20-2.5 ms - N20+2.5 ms during which motor evoked potentials were increased. M1-rPAS increased motor evoked potentials and reduced short-latency afferent inhibition as previously reported. These data provide evidence that, similar to M1, rPAS over SI is spike-timing dependent and is capable of exerting changes in SI and M1 physiology.

  11. Postnatal Development of CB1 Receptor Expression in Rodent Somatosensory Cortex

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    Deshmukh, Suvarna; Onozuka, Kaori; Bender, Kevin J.; Bender, Vanessa A.; Lutz, Beat; Mackie, Ken; Feldman, Daniel E.

    2007-01-01

    Endocannabinoids are powerful modulators of synaptic transmission that act on presynaptic cannabinoid receptors. Cannabinoid receptor type 1 (CB1) is the dominant receptor in the CNS, and is present in many brain regions, including sensory cortex. To investigate the potential role of CB1 receptors in cortical development, we examined the developmental expression of CB1 in rodent primary somatosensory (barrel) cortex, using immunohistochemistry with a CB1-specific antibody. We found that before postnatal day (P) 6, CB1 receptor staining was present exclusively in the cortical white matter, and that CB1 staining appeared in the grey matter between P6 and P20 in a specific laminar pattern. CB1 staining was confined to axons, and was most prominent in cortical layers 2/3, 5a, and 6. CB1 null (−/−) mice showed altered anatomical barrel maps in layer 4, with enlarged inter-barrel septa, but normal barrel size. These results indicate that CB1 receptors are present in early postnatal development and influence development of sensory maps. PMID:17210229

  12. Behavioral Consequences of a Bifacial Map in the Mouse Somatosensory Cortex.

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    Tsytsarev, Vassiliy; Arakawa, Hiroyuki; Zhao, Shuxin; Chédotal, Alain; Erzurumlu, Reha S

    2017-07-26

    The whisker system is an important sensory organ with extensive neural representations in the brain of the mouse. Patterned neural modules (barrelettes) in the ipsilateral principal sensory nucleus of the trigeminal nerve (PrV) correspond to the whiskers. Axons of the PrV barrelette neurons cross the midline and confer the whisker-related patterning to the contralateral ventroposteromedial nucleus of the thalamus, and subsequently to the cortex. In this way, specific neural modules called barreloids and barrels in the contralateral thalamus and cortex represent each whisker. Partial midline crossing of the PrV axons, in a conditional Robo3 mutant ( Robo3 R3-5 cKO ) mouse line, leads to the formation of bilateral whisker maps in the ventroposteromedial, as well as the barrel cortex. We used voltage-sensitive dye optical imaging and somatosensory and motor behavioral tests to characterize the consequences of bifacial maps in the thalamocortical system. Voltage-sensitive dye optical imaging verified functional, bilateral whisker representation in the barrel cortex and activation of distinct cortical loci following ipsilateral and contralateral stimulation of the specific whiskers. The mutant animals were comparable with the control animals in sensorimotor tests. However, they showed noticeable deficits in all of the whisker-dependent or -related tests, including Y-maze exploration, horizontal surface approach, bridge crossing, gap crossing, texture discrimination, floating in water, and whisking laterality. Our results indicate that bifacial maps along the thalamocortical system do not offer a functional advantage. Instead, they lead to impairments, possibly due to the smaller size of the whisker-related modules and interference between the ipsilateral and contralateral whisker representations in the same thalamus and cortex. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT The whisker sensory system plays a quintessentially important role in exploratory behavior of mice and other nocturnal

  13. Differential effects of aging on fore- and hindpaw maps of rat somatosensory cortex.

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    Marianne David-Jürgens

    Full Text Available Getting older is associated with a decline of cognitive and sensorimotor abilities, but it remains elusive whether age-related changes are due to accumulating degenerational processes, rendering them largely irreversible, or whether they reflect plastic, adaptational and presumably compensatory changes. Using aged rats as a model we studied how aging affects neural processing in somatosensory cortex. By multi-unit recordings in the fore- and hindpaw cortical maps we compared the effects of aging on receptive field size and response latencies. While in aged animals response latencies of neurons of both cortical representations were lengthened by approximately the same amount, only RFs of hindpaw neurons showed severe expansion with only little changes of forepaw RFs. To obtain insight into parallel changes of walking behavior, we recorded footprints in young and old animals which revealed a general age-related impairment of walking. In addition we found evidence for a limb-specific deterioration of the hindlimbs that was not observed in the forelimbs. Our results show that age-related changes of somatosensory cortical neurons display a complex pattern of regional specificity and parameter-dependence indicating that aging acts rather selectively on cortical processing of sensory information. The fact that RFs of the fore- and hindpaws do not co-vary in aged animals argues against degenerational processes on a global scale. We therefore conclude that age-related alterations are composed of plastic-adaptive alterations in response to modified use and degenerational changes developing with age. As a consequence, age-related changes need not be irreversible but can be subject to amelioration through training and stimulation.

  14. Loss of Ensemble Segregation in Dentate Gyrus, but Not in Somatosensory Cortex, during Contextual Fear Memory Generalization

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    Marie Yokoyama

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available The details of contextual or episodic memories are lost and generalized with the passage of time. Proper generalization may underlie the formation and assimilation of semantic memories and enable animals to adapt to ever-changing environments, whereas overgeneralization of fear memory evokes maladaptive fear responses to harmless stimuli, which is a symptom of anxiety disorders such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD. To understand the neural basis of fear memory generalization, we investigated the patterns of neuronal ensemble reactivation during memory retrieval when contextual fear memory expression is generalized using transgenic mice that allowed us to visualize specific neuronal ensembles activated during memory encoding and retrieval. We found preferential reactivations of neuronal ensembles in the primary somatosensory cortex, when mice were returned to the conditioned context to retrieve their memory 1 day after conditioning. In the hippocampal dentate gyrus (DG, exclusively separated ensemble reactivation was observed when mice were exposed to a novel context. These results suggest that the DG as well as the somatosensory cortex were likely to distinguish the two different contexts at the ensemble activity level when memory is not generalized at the behavioral level. However, 9 days after conditioning when animals exhibited generalized fear, the unique reactivation pattern in the DG, but not in the somatosensory cortex, was lost. Our results suggest that the alternations in the ensemble representation within the DG, or in upstream structures that link the sensory cortex to the hippocampus, may underlie generalized contextual fear memory expression.

  15. Primary somatosensory cortex in chronic low back pain – a 1H-MRS study

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    Sharma KN

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Neena K Sharma1, Kenneth McCarson2, Linda Van Dillen5, Angela Lentz1, Talal Khan3, Carmen M Cirstea1,41Department of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Science, 2Department of Pharmacology, Toxicology and Therapeutics, 3Department of Anesthesiology, 4Hoglund Brain Imaging Center, University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, KS, USA; 5Program in Physical Therapy and Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Washington University School of Medicine, St Louis, MO, USAAbstract: The goal of this study was to investigate whether certain metabolites, specific to neurons, glial cells, and the neuronal-glial neurotransmission system, in the primary somatosensory cortex (SSC, are altered and correlated with clinical characteristics of pain in patients with chronic low back pain (LBP. Eleven LBP patients and eleven age-matched healthy controls were included. N-acetylaspartate (NAA, choline (Cho, myo-inositol (mI, and glutamine/glutamate (Glx were measured with proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy (1H-MRS in left and right SSC. Differences in metabolite concentrations relative to those of controls were evaluated as well as analyses of metabolite correlations within and between SSCs. Relationships between metabolite concentrations and pain characteristics were also evaluated. We found decreased NAA in the left SSC (P = 0.001 and decreased Cho (P = 0.04 along with lower correlations between all metabolites in right SSC (P = 0.007 in LBP compared to controls. In addition, we found higher and significant correlations between left and right mI (P < 0.001 in LBP vs P = 0.1 in controls and between left mI and right Cho (P = 0.048 vs P = 0.6. Left and right NAA levels were negatively correlated with pain duration (P = 0.04 and P = 0.02 respectively while right Glx was positively correlated with pain severity (P = 0.04. Our preliminary results demonstrated significant altered neuronal-glial interactions in SSC, with left neural alterations related to pain duration

  16. Meditation reduces pain-related neural activity in the anterior cingulate cortex, insula, secondary somatosensory cortex, and thalamus

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    Nakata, Hiroki; Sakamoto, Kiwako; Kakigi, Ryusuke

    2014-01-01

    Recent studies have shown that meditation inhibits or relieves pain perception. To clarify the underlying mechanisms for this phenomenon, neuroimaging methods, such as functional magnetic resonance imaging, and neurophysiological methods, such as magnetoencephalography and electroencephalography, have been used. However, it has been difficult to interpret the results, because there is some paradoxical evidence. For example, some studies reported increased neural responses to pain stimulation during meditation in the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) and insula, whereas others showed a decrease in these regions. There have been inconsistent findings to date. Moreover, in general, since the activities of the ACC and insula are correlated with pain perception, the increase in neural activities during meditation would be related to the enhancement of pain perception rather than its reduction. These contradictions might directly contribute to the ‘mystery of meditation.’ In this review, we presented previous findings for brain regions during meditation and the anatomical changes that occurred in the brain with long-term meditation training. We then discussed the findings of previous studies that examined pain-related neural activity during meditation. We also described the brain mechanisms responsible for pain relief during meditation, and possible reasons for paradoxical evidence among previous studies. By thoroughly overviewing previous findings, we hypothesized that meditation reduces pain-related neural activity in the ACC, insula, secondary somatosensory cortex, and thalamus. We suggest that the characteristics of the modulation of this activity may depend on the kind of meditation and/or number of years of experience of meditation, which were associated with paradoxical findings among previous studies that investigated pain-related neural activities during meditation. PMID:25566158

  17. Neuron Types in the Presumptive Primary Somatosensory Cortex of the Florida Manatee (Trichechus manatus latirostris).

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    Reyes, Laura D; Stimpson, Cheryl D; Gupta, Kanika; Raghanti, Mary Ann; Hof, Patrick R; Reep, Roger L; Sherwood, Chet C

    2015-01-01

    Within afrotherians, sirenians are unusual due to their aquatic lifestyle, large body size and relatively large lissencephalic brain. However, little is known about the neuron type distributions of the cerebral cortex in sirenians within the context of other afrotherians and aquatic mammals. The present study investigated two cortical regions, dorsolateral cortex area 1 (DL1) and cluster cortex area 2 (CL2), in the presumptive primary somatosensory cortex (S1) in Florida manatees (Trichechus manatus latirostris) to characterize cyto- and chemoarchitecture. The mean neuron density for both cortical regions was 35,617 neurons/mm(3) and fell within the 95% prediction intervals relative to brain mass based on a reference group of afrotherians and xenarthrans. Densities of inhibitory interneuron subtypes labeled against calcium-binding proteins and neuropeptide Y were relatively low compared to afrotherians and xenarthrans and also formed a small percentage of the overall population of inhibitory interneurons as revealed by GAD67 immunoreactivity. Nonphosphorylated neurofilament protein-immunoreactive (NPNFP-ir) neurons comprised a mean of 60% of neurons in layer V across DL1 and CL2. DL1 contained a higher percentage of NPNFP-ir neurons than CL2, although CL2 had a higher variety of morphological types. The mean percentage of NPNFP-ir neurons in the two regions of the presumptive S1 were low compared to other afrotherians and xenarthrans but were within the 95% prediction intervals relative to brain mass, and their morphologies were comparable to those found in other afrotherians and xenarthrans. Although this specific pattern of neuron types and densities sets the manatee apart from other afrotherians and xenarthrans, the manatee isocortex does not appear to be explicitly adapted for an aquatic habitat. Many of the features that are shared between manatees and cetaceans are also shared with a diverse array of terrestrial mammals and likely represent highly conserved

  18. Seeing touch in the somatosensory cortex: a TMS study of the visual perception of touch.

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    Bolognini, Nadia; Rossetti, Angela; Maravita, Angelo; Miniussi, Carlo

    2011-12-01

    Recent studies suggest the existence of a visuo-tactile mirror system, comprising the primary (SI) and secondary (SII) somatosensory cortices, which matches observed touch with felt touch. Here, repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) was used to determine whether SI or SII play a functional role in the visual processing of tactile events. Healthy participants performed a visual discrimination task with tactile stimuli (a finger touching a hand) and a control task (a finger moving without touching). During both tasks, rTMS was applied over either SI or SII, and to the occipital cortex. rTMS over SI selectively reduced subject performance for interpreting whether a contralateral visual tactile stimulus contains a tactile event, whereas SII stimulation impaired visual processing regardless of the tactile component. These findings provide evidence for a multimodal sensory-motor system with mirror properties, where somatic and visual properties of action converge. SI, a cortical area traditionally viewed as modality-specific, is selectively implicated in the visual processing of touch. These results are in line with the existence of a sensory mirror system mediating the embodied simulation concept. Copyright © 2010 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  19. Posterior insular cortex – a site of vestibular–somatosensory interaction?

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    Baier, Bernhard; zu Eulenburg, Peter; Best, Christoph; Geber, Christian; Müller-Forell, Wibke; Birklein, Frank; Dieterich, Marianne

    2013-01-01

    Background In previous imaging studies the insular cortex (IC) has been identified as an essential part of the processing of a wide spectrum of perception and sensorimotor integration. Yet, there are no systematic lesion studies in a sufficient number of patients examining whether processing of vestibular and the interaction of somatosensory and vestibular signals take place in the IC. Methods We investigated acute stroke patients with lesions affecting the IC in order to fill this gap. In detail, we explored signs of a vestibular tone imbalance such as the deviation of the subjective visual vertical (SVV). We applied voxel-lesion behaviour mapping analysis in 27 patients with acute unilateral stroke. Results Our data demonstrate that patients with lesions of the posterior IC have an abnormal tilt of SVV. Furthermore, re-analysing data of 20 patients from a previous study, we found a positive correlation between thermal perception contralateral to the stroke and the severity of the SVV tilt. Conclusions We conclude that the IC is a sensory brain region where different modalities might interact. PMID:24392273

  20. Tactile information processing in primate hand somatosensory cortex (S1) during passive arm movement.

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    Song, Weiguo; Francis, Joseph Thachil

    2013-11-01

    Motor output mostly depends on sensory input, which also can be affected by action. To further our understanding of how tactile information is processed in the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) in dynamic environments, we recorded neural responses to tactile stimulation of the hand in three awake monkeys under arm/hand passive movement and rest. We found that neurons generally responded to tactile stimulation under both conditions and were modulated by movement: with a higher baseline firing rate, a suppressed peak rate, and a smaller dynamic range during passive movement than during rest, while the area under the response curve was stable across these two states. By using an information theory-based method, the mutual information between tactile stimulation and neural responses was quantified with rate and spatial coding models under the two conditions. The two potential encoding models showed different contributions depending on behavioral contexts. Tactile information encoded with rate coding from individual units was lower than spatial coding of unit pairs, especially during movement; however, spatial coding had redundant information between unit pairs. Passive movement regulated the mutual information, and such regulation might play different roles depending on the encoding strategies used. The underlying mechanisms of our observation most likely come from a bottom-up strategy, where neurons in S1 were regulated through the activation of the peripheral tactile/proprioceptive receptors and the interactions between these different types of information.

  1. Whisker Deprivation Drives Two Phases of Inhibitory Synapse Weakening in Layer 4 of Rat Somatosensory Cortex.

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    Melanie A Gainey

    Full Text Available Inhibitory synapse development in sensory neocortex is experience-dependent, with sustained sensory deprivation yielding fewer and weaker inhibitory synapses. Whether this represents arrest of synapse maturation, or a more complex set of processes, is unclear. To test this, we measured the dynamics of inhibitory synapse development in layer 4 of rat somatosensory cortex (S1 during continuous whisker deprivation from postnatal day 7, and in age-matched controls. In deprived columns, spontaneous miniature inhibitory postsynaptic currents (mIPSCs and evoked IPSCs developed normally until P15, when IPSC amplitude transiently decreased, recovering by P16 despite ongoing deprivation. IPSCs remained normal until P22, when a second, sustained phase of weakening began. Delaying deprivation onset by 5 days prevented the P15 weakening. Both early and late phase weakening involved measurable reduction in IPSC amplitude relative to prior time points. Thus, deprivation appears to drive two distinct phases of active IPSC weakening, rather than simple arrest of synapse maturation.

  2. Descending projections from the dysgranular zone of rat primary somatosensory cortex processing deep somatic input.

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    Lee, Taehee; Kim, Uhnoh

    2012-04-01

    In the mammalian somatic system, peripheral inputs from cutaneous and deep receptors ascend via different subcortical channels and terminate in largely separate regions of the primary somatosensory cortex (SI). How these inputs are processed in SI and then projected back to the subcortical relay centers is critical for understanding how SI may regulate somatic information processing in the subcortex. Although it is now relatively well understood how SI cutaneous areas project to the subcortical structures, little is known about the descending projections from SI areas processing deep somatic input. We examined this issue by using the rodent somatic system as a model. In rat SI, deep somatic input is processed mainly in the dysgranular zone (DSZ) enclosed by the cutaneous barrel subfields. By using biotinylated dextran amine (BDA) as anterograde tracer, we characterized the topography of corticostriatal and corticofugal projections arising in the DSZ. The DSZ projections terminate mainly in the lateral subregions of the striatum that are also known as the target of certain SI cutaneous areas. This suggests that SI processing of deep and cutaneous information may be integrated, to a certain degree, in this striatal region. By contrast, at both thalamic and prethalamic levels as far as the spinal cord, descending projections from DSZ terminate in areas largely distinguishable from those that receive input from SI cutaneous areas. These subcortical targets of DSZ include not only the sensory but also motor-related structures, suggesting that SI processing of deep input may engage in regulating somatic and motor information flow between the cortex and periphery. Copyright © 2011 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  3. Distribution and morphology of nitridergic neurons across functional domains of the rat primary somatosensory cortex

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    Anaelli A Nogueira-Campos

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available The rat primary somatosensory cortex (S1 is remarkable for its conspicuous vertical compartmentalization in barrels and septal columns, which are additionally stratified in horizontal layers. Whereas excitatory neurons from each of these compartments perform different types of processing, the role of interneurons is much less clear. Among the numerous types of GABAergic interneurons, those producing nitric oxide (NO are especially puzzling, since this gaseous messenger can modulate neural activity, synaptic plasticity and neurovascular coupling. We used a quantitative morphological approach to investigate whether nitrergic interneurons, which might therefore be considered both as NO volume diffusers and as elements of local circuitry, display features that could relate to barrel cortex architecture. In fixed brain sections, nitrergic interneurons can be revealed by histochemical processing for NADPH-diaphorase (NADPHd. Here, the dendritic arbors of nitrergic neurons from different compartments of area S1 were 3D reconstructed from serial 200-μm thick sections, using 100x objective and the Neurolucida system. Standard morphological parameters were extracted for all individual arbors and compared across columns and layers. Wedge analysis was used to compute dendritic orientation indices. Supragranular layers displayed the highest density of nitrergic neurons, whereas layer IV contained nitrergic neurons with largest soma area. The highest nitrergic neuronal density was found in septa, where dendrites were previously characterized as more extense and ramified than in barrels. Dendritic arbors were not confined to the boundaries of the column nor layer of their respective soma, being mostly double-tufted and vertically oriented, except in supragranular layers. These data strongly suggest that nitrergic interneurons adapt their morphology to the dynamics of processing performed by cortical compartments.

  4. Exposure to Music and Noise During Pregnancy Influences Neurogenesis and Thickness in Motor and Somatosensory Cortex of Rat Pups

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    Chang-Hee Kim

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Purpose Prenatal environmental conditions affect the development of the fetus. In the present study, we investigated the effects of exposure to music and noise during pregnancy on neurogenesis and thickness in the motor and somatosensory cortex of rat pups. Methods The pregnant rats in the music-applied group were exposed to 65 dB of comfortable music for 1 hour, once per day, from the 15th day of pregnancy until delivery. The pregnant rats in the noise-applied group were exposed to 95 dB of sound from a supersonic sound machine for 1 hour, once per day, from the 15th day of pregnancy until delivery. After birth, the offspring were left undisturbed together with their mother. The rat pups were sacrificed at 21 days after birth. Results Exposure to music during pregnancy increased neurogenesis in the motor and somatosensory cortex of rat pups. In contrast, rat pups exposed to noise during pregnancy showed decreased neurogenesis and thickness in the motor and somatosensory cortex. Conclusions Our study suggests that music and noise during the developmental period are important factors influencing brain development and urogenital disorders.

  5. Reduced resting-state functional connectivity of the somatosensory cortex predicts psychopathological symptoms in women with bulimia nervosa.

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    Lavagnino, Luca; Amianto, Federico; D'Agata, Federico; Huang, Zirui; Mortara, Paolo; Abbate-Daga, Giovanni; Marzola, Enrica; Spalatro, Angela; Fassino, Secondo; Northoff, Georg

    2014-01-01

    Alterations in the resting-state functional connectivity (rs-FC) of several brain networks have been demonstrated in eating disorders. However, very few studies are currently available on brain network dysfunctions in bulimia nervosa (BN). The somatosensory network is central in processing body-related stimuli and it may be altered in BN. The present study therefore aimed to investigate rs-FC in the somatosensory network in bulimic women. Sixteen medication-free women with BN (age = 23 ± 5 years) and 18 matched controls (age = 23 ± 3 years) underwent a functional magnetic resonance resting-state scan and assessment of eating disorder symptoms. Within-network and seed-based functional connectivity analyses were conducted to assess rs-FC within the somatosensory network and to other areas of the brain. Bulimia nervosa patients showed a decreased rs-FC both within the somatosensory network (t = 9.0, df = 1, P = 0.005) and with posterior cingulate cortex and two visual areas (the right middle occipital gyrus and the right cuneus) (P = 0.05 corrected for multiple comparison). The rs-FC of the left paracentral lobule with the right middle occipital gyrus correlated with psychopathology measures like bulimia (r = -0.4; P = 0.02) and interoceptive awareness (r = -0.4; P = 0.01). Analyses were conducted using age, BMI (body mass index), and depressive symptoms as covariates. Our findings show a specific alteration of the rs-FC of the somatosensory cortex in BN patients, which correlates with eating disorder symptoms. The region in the right middle occipital gyrus is implicated in body processing and is known as extrastriate body area (EBA). The connectivity between the somatosensory cortex and the EBA might be related to dysfunctions in body image processing. The results should be considered preliminary due to the small sample size.

  6. Predicting Spike Occurrence and Neuronal Responsiveness from LFPs in Primary Somatosensory Cortex

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    Storchi, Riccardo; Zippo, Antonio G.; Caramenti, Gian Carlo; Valente, Maurizio; Biella, Gabriele E. M.

    2012-01-01

    Local Field Potentials (LFPs) integrate multiple neuronal events like synaptic inputs and intracellular potentials. LFP spatiotemporal features are particularly relevant in view of their applications both in research (e.g. for understanding brain rhythms, inter-areal neural communication and neronal coding) and in the clinics (e.g. for improving invasive Brain-Machine Interface devices). However the relation between LFPs and spikes is complex and not fully understood. As spikes represent the fundamental currency of neuronal communication this gap in knowledge strongly limits our comprehension of neuronal phenomena underlying LFPs. We investigated the LFP-spike relation during tactile stimulation in primary somatosensory (S-I) cortex in the rat. First we quantified how reliably LFPs and spikes code for a stimulus occurrence. Then we used the information obtained from our analyses to design a predictive model for spike occurrence based on LFP inputs. The model was endowed with a flexible meta-structure whose exact form, both in parameters and structure, was estimated by using a multi-objective optimization strategy. Our method provided a set of nonlinear simple equations that maximized the match between models and true neurons in terms of spike timings and Peri Stimulus Time Histograms. We found that both LFPs and spikes can code for stimulus occurrence with millisecond precision, showing, however, high variability. Spike patterns were predicted significantly above chance for 75% of the neurons analysed. Crucially, the level of prediction accuracy depended on the reliability in coding for the stimulus occurrence. The best predictions were obtained when both spikes and LFPs were highly responsive to the stimuli. Spike reliability is known to depend on neuron intrinsic properties (i.e. on channel noise) and on spontaneous local network fluctuations. Our results suggest that the latter, measured through the LFP response variability, play a dominant role. PMID:22586452

  7. Synaptic and Cellular Organization of Layer 1 of the Developing Rat Somatosensory Cortex

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    Shruti eMuralidhar

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available We have performed a systematic and quantitative study of the neuronal and synaptic organisation of neocortical layer 1 in the somatosensory cortex in juvenile rats (P13 – P16 using multi-neuron patch-clamp and 3D morphology reconstructions. We used both subjective expert based and objective classification to establish distinct morphological groups. According to expert based subjective classification, the neurons were classified into six morphological types: (1 the dense axon neurogliaform cell (NGC-DA and (2 a sparse axon neurogliaform cell (NGC-SA, (3 the horizontal axon cell (HAC and (4 those with descending axonal colaterals (DAC, (5 the large axon cell (LAC and (6 the small axon cell (SAC. We also used objective supervised and unsupervised analyses that confirmed 4 out of the 6 expert proposed groups, namely, DAC, HAC, LAC and a combined NGC. The cells were also classified into 5 electrophysiological types based on the Petilla convention; classical non-adapting (cNAC, burst non-adapting (bNAC, classical adapting (cAC, classical stuttering (cSTUT and classical irregular spiking (cIR. The most common electrophysiological type was the cNAC type (40% and the most commonly encountered morpho-electrical type of neuron was the NGC-DA - cNAC. Layer 1 cells are connected by GABAergic inhibitory synaptic connections with a 7.9% connection probability, as well gap junctions with 5.2% connection probability. Most synaptic connections were mediated by both GABAA and GABAB receptors (62.6%, as observed from the response characteristics to single pulse and train stimulations. A smaller fraction of synaptic connections were mediated exclusively by GABAA (15.4% or GABAB (21.8% receptors. Based on the morphological reconstructions, we found multi-synapse connections with an average of 9 putative synapses per connection. These putative touches were widely distributed with 39% on somata and 61% on dendrites.

  8. Long-term stability of sensitivity to intracortical microstimulation of somatosensory cortex

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    Callier, Thierri; Schluter, Erik W.; Tabot, Gregg A.; Miller, Lee E.; Tenore, Francesco V.; Bensmaia, Sliman J.

    2015-10-01

    Objective. The dexterous manipulation of objects depends heavily on somatosensory signals from the limb. The development of anthropomorphic robotic arms and of algorithms to decode intended movements from neuronal signals has stimulated the need to restore somatosensation for use in upper-limb neuroprostheses. Without touch and proprioception, patients have difficulty controlling prosthetic limbs to a level that justifies the required invasive surgery. Intracortical microstimulation (ICMS) through chronically implanted electrode arrays has the potential to provide rich and intuitive sensory feedback. This approach to sensory restoration requires, however, that the evoked sensations remain stable over time. Approach. To investigate the stability of ICMS-evoked sensations, we measured the ability of non-human primates to detect ICMS over experimental sessions that spanned years. Main results. We found that the performance of the animals remained highly stable over time, even when they were tested with electrodes that had experienced extensive stimulation. Significance. Given the stability of the sensations that it evokes, ICMS may thus be a viable approach for sensory restoration.

  9. Imaging the spatio-temporal dynamics of supragranular activity in the rat somatosensory cortex in response to stimulation of the paws.

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    M L Morales-Botello

    Full Text Available We employed voltage-sensitive dye (VSD imaging to investigate the spatio-temporal dynamics of the responses of the supragranular somatosensory cortex to stimulation of the four paws in urethane-anesthetized rats. We obtained the following main results. (1 Stimulation of the contralateral forepaw evoked VSD responses with greater amplitude and smaller latency than stimulation of the contralateral hindpaw, and ipsilateral VSD responses had a lower amplitude and greater latency than contralateral responses. (2 While the contralateral stimulation initially activated only one focus, the ipsilateral stimulation initially activated two foci: one focus was typically medial to the focus activated by contralateral stimulation and was stereotaxically localized in the motor cortex; the other focus was typically posterior to the focus activated by contralateral stimulation and was stereotaxically localized in the somatosensory cortex. (3 Forepaw and hindpaw somatosensory stimuli activated large areas of the sensorimotor cortex, well beyond the forepaw and hindpaw somatosensory areas of classical somatotopic maps, and forepaw stimuli activated larger cortical areas with greater activation velocity than hindpaw stimuli. (4 Stimulation of the forepaw and hindpaw evoked different cortical activation dynamics: forepaw responses displayed a clear medial directionality, whereas hindpaw responses were much more uniform in all directions. In conclusion, this work offers a complete spatio-temporal map of the supragranular VSD cortical activation in response to stimulation of the paws, showing important somatotopic differences between contralateral and ipsilateral maps as well as differences in the spatio-temporal activation dynamics in response to forepaw and hindpaw stimuli.

  10. Negative BOLD signal changes in ipsilateral primary somatosensory cortex are associated with perfusion decreases and behavioral evidence for functional inhibition

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schäfer, Katharina; Blankenburg, Felix; Kupers, Ron

    2012-01-01

    that the negative BOLD signal is associated with functional inhibition. Electrical stimulation of the median nerve at 7Hz evoked robust negative BOLD signals in the primary somatosensory cortex (SI) ipsilateral to stimulation, and positive BOLD signals in contralateral SI. The negative BOLD signal in ipsilateral SI......) at the ipsilateral finger during concomitant stimulation of the contralateral median nerve increased significantly, suggesting augmented functional inhibition. Since the CPT in the ipsilateral hallux did not significantly change in response to median nerve stimulation, it is more likely that the CPT......-increase for the finger is due to functional inhibition (Kastrup et al., 2008) than to changes in selective attention. In conclusion, our data provide evidence that stimulus-induced reductions in relative rCBF may underlie the negative BOLD signal, which in turn may reflect increments in functional inhibition....

  11. HAL® exoskeleton training improves walking parameters and normalizes cortical excitability in primary somatosensory cortex in spinal cord injury patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sczesny-Kaiser, Matthias; Höffken, Oliver; Aach, Mirko; Cruciger, Oliver; Grasmücke, Dennis; Meindl, Renate; Schildhauer, Thomas A; Schwenkreis, Peter; Tegenthoff, Martin

    2015-08-20

    Reorganization in the sensorimotor cortex accompanied by increased excitability and enlarged body representations is a consequence of spinal cord injury (SCI). Robotic-assisted bodyweight supported treadmill training (BWSTT) was hypothesized to induce reorganization and improve walking function. To assess whether BWSTT with hybrid assistive limb® (HAL®) exoskeleton affects cortical excitability in the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) in SCI patients, as measured by paired-pulse somatosensory evoked potentials (ppSEP) stimulated above the level of injury. Eleven SCI patients took part in HAL® assisted BWSTT for 3 months. PpSEP were conducted before and after this training period, where the amplitude ratios (SEP amplitude following double pulses - SEP amplitude following single pulses) were assessed and compared to eleven healthy control subjects. To assess improvement in walking function, we used the 10-m walk test, timed-up-and-go test, the 6-min walk test, and the lower extremity motor score. PpSEPs were significantly increased in SCI patients as compared to controls at baseline. Following training, ppSEPs were increased from baseline and no longer significantly differed from controls. Walking parameters also showed significant improvements, yet there was no significant correlation between ppSEP measures and walking parameters. The findings suggest that robotic-assisted BWSTT with HAL® in SCI patients is capable of inducing cortical plasticity following highly repetitive, active locomotive use of paretic legs. While there was no significant correlation of excitability with walking parameters, brain areas other than S1 might reflect improvement of walking functions. EEG and neuroimaging studies may provide further information about supraspinal plastic processes and foci in SCI rehabilitation.

  12. Effects of Ketamine on Neuronal Spontaneous Excitatory Postsynaptic Currents and Miniature Excitatory Postsynaptic Currents in the Somatosensory Cortex of Rats

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    Chengdong Yuan

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Background: Ketamine is a commonly used intravenous anesthetic which produces dissociation anesthesia, analgesia, and amnesia. The mechanism of ketamine-induced synaptic inhibition in high-level cortical areas is still unknown. We aimed to elucidate the effects of different concentrations of ketamine on the glutamatergic synaptic transmission of the neurons in the primary somatosensory cortex by using the whole-cell patch-clamp method. Methods: Sprague-Dawley rats (11–19 postnatal days, n=36 were used to obtain brain slices (300 μM. Spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents (data from 40 neurons were recorded at a command potential of -70 mV in the presence of bicuculline (a competitive antagonist of GABAA receptors, 30 μM and strychnine (glycine receptor antagonist, 30 μM. Miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (data from 40 neurons were also recorded when 1 μM of tetrodotoxin was added into the artificial cerebrospinal fluid. We used GraphPad Prism5for statistical analysis. Significant differences in the mean amplitude and frequency were tested using the Student paired 2-tailed t test. Values of P<0.05 were considered significant. Results: Different concentrations of ketamine inhibited the frequency and amplitude of the spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents as well as the amplitude of the miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents in a concentration-dependent manner, but they exerted no significant effect on the frequency of the miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents. Conclusion: Ketamine inhibited the excitatory synaptic transmission of the neurons in the primary somatosensory cortex. The inhibition may have been mediated by a reduction in the sensitivity of the postsynaptic glutamatergic receptors.

  13. Experience-induced plasticity of cutaneous maps in the primary somatosensory cortex of adult monkeys and rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xerri, C; Coq, J O; Merzenich, M M; Jenkins, W M

    1996-01-01

    In a first study, the representations of skin surfaces of the hand in the primary somatosensory cortex, area 3b, were reconstructed in owl monkeys and squirrel monkeys trained to pick up food pellets from small, shallow wells, a task which required skilled use of the digits. Training sessions included limited manual exercise over a total period of a few hours of practice. From an early clumsy performance in which many retrieval attempts were required for each successful pellet retrieval, the monkeys exhibited a gradual improvement. Typically, the animals used various combinations of digits before developing a successful retrieval strategy. As the behavior came to be stereotyped, monkeys consistently engaged surfaces of the distal phalanges of one or two digits in the palpation and capture of food pellets from the smallest wells. Microelectrode mapping of the hand surfaces revealed that the glabrous skin of the fingertips predominantly involved in the dexterity task was represented over topographically expanded cortical sectors. Furthermore, cutaneous receptive fields which covered the most frequently stimulated digital tip surfaces were less than half as large as were those representing the corresponding surfaces of control digits. In a second series of experiments, Long-Evans rats were assigned to environments promoting differential tactile experience (standard, enriched, and impoverished) for 80 to 115 days from the time of weaning. A fourth group of young adult rat experienced a severe restriction of forepaw exploratory movement for either 7 or 15 days. Cortical maps derived in the primary somatosensory cortex showed that environmental enrichment induced a substantial enlargement of the cutaneous forepaw representation, and improved its spatial resolution (smaller glabrous receptive fields). In contrast, tactile impoverishment resulted in a degradation of the forepaw representation that was characterized by larger cutaneous receptive fields and the emergence of

  14. Multi-frequency phase locking in human somatosensory cortex

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Langdon, A.J.; Boonstra, T.W.; Breakspear, M.

    2011-01-01

    Cortical population responses to sensory input arise from the interaction between external stimuli and the intrinsic dynamics of the densely interconnected neuronal population. Although there is a large body of knowledge regarding single neuron responses to periodic stimuli, responses at the scale

  15. Blood oxygenation level dependent signal and neuronal adaptation to optogenetic and sensory stimulation in somatosensory cortex in awake animals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aksenov, Daniil P; Li, Limin; Miller, Michael J; Wyrwicz, Alice M

    2016-11-01

    The adaptation of neuronal responses to stimulation, in which a peak transient response is followed by a sustained plateau, has been well-studied. The blood oxygenation level dependent (BOLD) functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) signal has also been shown to exhibit adaptation on a longer time scale. However, some regions such as the visual and auditory cortices exhibit significant BOLD adaptation, whereas other such as the whisker barrel cortex may not adapt. In the sensory cortex a combination of thalamic inputs and intracortical activity drives hemodynamic changes, although the relative contributions of these components are not entirely understood. The aim of this study is to assess the role of thalamic inputs vs. intracortical processing in shaping BOLD adaptation during stimulation in the somatosensory cortex. Using simultaneous fMRI and electrophysiology in awake rabbits, we measured BOLD, local field potentials (LFPs), single- and multi-unit activity in the cortex during whisker and optogenetic stimulation. This design allowed us to compare BOLD and haemodynamic responses during activation of the normal thalamocortical sensory pathway (i.e., both inputs and intracortical activity) vs. the direct optical activation of intracortical circuitry alone. Our findings show that whereas LFP and multi-unit (MUA) responses adapted, neither optogenetic nor sensory stimulation produced significant BOLD adaptation. We observed for both paradigms a variety of excitatory and inhibitory single unit responses. We conclude that sensory feed-forward thalamic inputs are not primarily responsible for shaping BOLD adaptation to stimuli; but the single-unit results point to a role in this behaviour for specific excitatory and inhibitory neuronal sub-populations, which may not correlate with aggregate neuronal activity. © 2016 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  16. Excessive body fat linked to blunted somatosensory cortex response to general reward in adolescents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Navas, J F; Barrós-Loscertales, A; Costumero-Ramos, V; Verdejo-Román, J; Vilar-López, R; Verdejo-García, A

    2018-01-01

    The brain reward system is key to understanding adolescent obesity in the current obesogenic environment, rich in highly appetising stimuli, to which adolescents are particularly sensitive. We aimed to examine the association between body fat levels and brain reward system responsivity to general (monetary) rewards in male and female adolescents. Sixty-eight adolescents (34 females; mean age (s.d.)= 16.56 (1.35)) were measured for body fat levels with bioelectric impedance, and underwent a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scan during the Monetary Incentive Delay (MID) task. The MID task reliably elicits brain activations associated with two fundamental aspects of reward processing: anticipation and feedback. We conducted regression analyses to examine the association between body fat and brain reward system responsivity during reward anticipation and feedback, while controlling for sex, age and socioeconomic status. We also analysed the moderating impact of sex on the relationship between fat levels and brain responsivity measures. Brain imaging analyses were corrected for multiple comparisons, with a cluster-defining threshold of Preward feedback after controlling for key sociodemographic variables. Although we did not find significant associations between body fat and brain activations during reward anticipation, S1/supramarginal gyrus activation during feedback was linked to increased negative prediction error, that is, less reward than expected, in illustrative post hoc analyses. Sex did not significantly moderate the association between body fat and brain activation in the MID task. In adolescents, higher adiposity is linked to hypo-responsivity of somatosensory regions during general (monetary) reward feedback. Findings suggest that adolescents with excess weight have blunted activation in somatosensory regions involved in reward feedback learning.

  17. Diffuse optical tomography activation in the somatosensory cortex: specific activation by painful vs. non-painful thermal stimuli.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lino Becerra

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available Pain is difficult to assess due to the subjective nature of self-reporting. The lack of objective measures of pain has hampered the development of new treatments as well as the evaluation of current ones. Functional MRI studies of pain have begun to delineate potential brain response signatures that could be used as objective read-outs of pain. Using Diffuse Optical Tomography (DOT, we have shown in the past a distinct DOT signal over the somatosensory cortex to a noxious heat stimulus that could be distinguished from the signal elicited by innocuous mechanical stimuli. Here we further our findings by studying the response to thermal innocuous and noxious stimuli.Innocuous and noxious thermal stimuli were applied to the skin of the face of the first division (ophthalmic of the trigeminal nerve in healthy volunteers (N = 6. Stimuli temperatures were adjusted for each subject to evoke warm (equivalent to a 3/10 and painful hot (7/10 sensations in a verbal rating scale (0/10 = no/max pain. A set of 26 stimuli (5 sec each was applied for each temperature with inter-stimulus intervals varied between 8 and 15 sec using a Peltier thermode. A DOT system was used to capture cortical responses on both sides of the head over the primary somatosensory cortical region (S1. For the innocuous stimuli, group results indicated mainly activation on the contralateral side with a weak ipsilateral response. For the noxious stimuli, bilateral activation was observed with comparable amplitudes on both sides. Furthermore, noxious stimuli produced a temporal biphasic response while innocuous stimuli produced a monophasic response.These results are in accordance with fMRI and our other DOT studies of innocuous mechanical and noxious heat stimuli. The data indicate the differentiation of DOT cortical responses for pain vs. innocuous stimuli that may be useful in assessing objectively acute pain.

  18. Inhibitory Mechanisms in Primary Somatosensory Cortex Mediate the Effects of Peripheral Electrical Stimulation on Tactile Spatial Discrimination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saito, Kei; Otsuru, Naofumi; Inukai, Yasuto; Kojima, Sho; Miyaguchi, Shota; Tsuiki, Shota; Sasaki, Ryoki; Onishi, Hideaki

    2018-06-01

    Selective afferent activation can be used to improve somatosensory function, possibly by altering cortical inhibitory circuit activity. Peripheral electrical stimulation (PES) is widely used to induce selective afferent activation, and its effect may depend on PES intensity. Therefore, we investigated the effects of high- and low-intensity PES applied to the right index finger on tactile discrimination performance and cortical sensory-evoked potential paired-pulse depression (SEP-PPD) in 25 neurologically healthy subjects. In Experiment 1, a grating orientation task (GOT) was performed before and immediately after local high- and low-intensity PES (both delivered as 1-s, 20-Hz trains of 0.2-ms electrical pulses at 5-s intervals). In Experiment 2, PPD of SEP components N20/P25_SEP-PPD and N20_SEP-PPD, respectively, were assessed before and immediately after high- and low-intensity PES. Improved GOT discrimination performance after high-intensity PES (reduced discrimination threshold) was associated with lower baseline performance (higher baseline discrimination threshold). Subjects were classified into low and high (baseline) GOT performance groups. Improved GOT discrimination performance in the low GOT performance group was significantly associated with a greater N20_SEP-PPD decrease (weaker PPD). Subjects were also classified into GOT improvement and GOT decrement groups. High-intensity PES decreased N20_SEP-PPD in the GOT improvement group but increased N20_SEP-PPD in the GOT decrement group. Furthermore, a greater decrease in GOT discrimination threshold was significantly associated with a greater N20_SEP-PPD decrease in the GOT improvement group. These results suggest that high-intensity PES can improve sensory perception in subjects with low baseline function by modulating cortical inhibitory circuits in primary somatosensory cortex. Copyright © 2018 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  19. Long-term neuroplasticity of the face primary motor cortex and adjacent somatosensory cortex induced by tooth loss can be reversed following dental implant replacement in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Avivi-Arber, Limor; Lee, Jye-Chang; Sood, Mandeep; Lakschevitz, Flavia; Fung, Michelle; Barashi-Gozal, Maayan; Glogauer, Michael; Sessle, Barry J

    2015-11-01

    Tooth loss is common, and exploring the neuroplastic capacity of the face primary motor cortex (face-M1) and adjacent primary somatosensory cortex (face-S1) is crucial for understanding how subjects adapt to tooth loss and their prosthetic replacement. The aim was to test if functional reorganization of jaw and tongue motor representations in the rat face-M1 and face-S1 occurs following tooth extraction, and if subsequent dental implant placement can reverse this neuroplasticity. Rats (n = 22) had the right maxillary molar teeth extracted under local and general anesthesia. One month later, seven rats had dental implant placement into healed extraction sites. Naive rats (n = 8) received no surgical treatment. Intracortical microstimulation (ICMS) and recording of evoked jaw and tongue electromyographic responses were used to define jaw and tongue motor representations at 1 month (n = 8) or 2 months (n = 7) postextraction, 1 month postimplant placement, and at 1-2 months in naive rats. There were no significant differences across study groups in the onset latencies of the ICMS-evoked responses (P > 0.05), but in comparison with naive rats, tooth extraction caused a significant (P rats. These novel findings suggest that face-M1 and adjacent face-S1 may play a role in adaptive mechanisms related to tooth loss and their replacement with dental implants. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  20. Body Topography Parcellates Human Sensory and Motor Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuehn, Esther; Dinse, Juliane; Jakobsen, Estrid; Long, Xiangyu; Schäfer, Andreas; Bazin, Pierre-Louis; Villringer, Arno; Sereno, Martin I; Margulies, Daniel S

    2017-07-01

    The cytoarchitectonic map as proposed by Brodmann currently dominates models of human sensorimotor cortical structure, function, and plasticity. According to this model, primary motor cortex, area 4, and primary somatosensory cortex, area 3b, are homogenous areas, with the major division lying between the two. Accumulating empirical and theoretical evidence, however, has begun to question the validity of the Brodmann map for various cortical areas. Here, we combined in vivo cortical myelin mapping with functional connectivity analyses and topographic mapping techniques to reassess the validity of the Brodmann map in human primary sensorimotor cortex. We provide empirical evidence that area 4 and area 3b are not homogenous, but are subdivided into distinct cortical fields, each representing a major body part (the hand and the face). Myelin reductions at the hand-face borders are cortical layer-specific, and coincide with intrinsic functional connectivity borders as defined using large-scale resting state analyses. Our data extend the Brodmann model in human sensorimotor cortex and suggest that body parts are an important organizing principle, similar to the distinction between sensory and motor processing. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press.

  1. Low-noise encoding of active touch by layer 4 in the somatosensory cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hires, Samuel Andrew; Gutnisky, Diego A; Yu, Jianing; O'Connor, Daniel H; Svoboda, Karel

    2015-08-06

    Cortical spike trains often appear noisy, with the timing and number of spikes varying across repetitions of stimuli. Spiking variability can arise from internal (behavioral state, unreliable neurons, or chaotic dynamics in neural circuits) and external (uncontrolled behavior or sensory stimuli) sources. The amount of irreducible internal noise in spike trains, an important constraint on models of cortical networks, has been difficult to estimate, since behavior and brain state must be precisely controlled or tracked. We recorded from excitatory barrel cortex neurons in layer 4 during active behavior, where mice control tactile input through learned whisker movements. Touch was the dominant sensorimotor feature, with >70% spikes occurring in millisecond timescale epochs after touch onset. The variance of touch responses was smaller than expected from Poisson processes, often reaching the theoretical minimum. Layer 4 spike trains thus reflect the millisecond-timescale structure of tactile input with little noise.

  2. Reorganization in Secondary Somatosensory Cortex in Chronic Low Back Pain Patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hotz-Boendermaker, Sabina; Marcar, Valentine L; Meier, Michael L; Boendermaker, Bart; Humphreys, Barry K

    2016-06-01

    A cross-sectional comparative study between chronic low back pain (CLBP) patients and healthy control subjects. The aim of this study was to investigate reorganization in the sensory cortex by comparing cortical activity due to mechanosensory stimulation of the lumbar spine in CLBP patients versus a control group by using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). LBP is now the number 1 condition across the world in terms of years living with a disability. There is growing evidence that maladaptive changes in the processing of sensory input by the central nervous system are central to understanding chronic (back) pain. Nonpainful, posterior-anterior (PA) movement pressure was applied manually to lumbar vertebrae at L1, L3, and L5 in 13 healthy subjects and 13 CLBP patients. The manual pressure (30 N) was monitored and controlled using sensors. A randomized stimulation protocol was used consisting of 51 pressure stimuli of 5 seconds duration. fMRI data analysis was performed for the group activation within the primary and secondary sensory cortices (S1 and S2, respectively) and the representation of the individual vertebrae was extracted and statistically analyzed. Nonpainful PA pressure revealed no cortical reorganization in S1. In contrast, the extent of S2 activation in the CLBP group was significantly reduced in both hemispheres. In the control group, a somatotopy was identified for the lumbar vertebrae between L1 and L3, respectively, and L5 in S2 of the right hemisphere. Most importantly, a blurring of the somatotopic representation of the lumbar spine in S2 was observed in the patient group. Together, these maladaptive changes suggest a reorganization of higher-order processing for sensory information in CLBP patients that might have implications for a decreased sensory acuity, also related to body perception and subsequent altered functioning of the lumbar spine. 2.

  3. Expectation violation and attention to pain jointly modulate neural gain in somatosensory cortex

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fardo, Francesca; Auksztulewicz, Ryszard; Allen, Micah

    2017-01-01

    be mapped onto changes in effective connectivity between or within specific neuronal populations, using a canonical microcircuit (CMC) model of hierarchical processing. We thus implemented a CMC within dynamic causal modelling (DCM) for magnetoencephalography in human subjects, to investigate how...

  4. Laminar microvascular transit time distribution in the mouse somatosensory cortex revealed by Dynamic Contrast Optical Coherence Tomography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merkle, Conrad W; Srinivasan, Vivek J

    2016-01-15

    The transit time distribution of blood through the cerebral microvasculature both constrains oxygen delivery and governs the kinetics of neuroimaging signals such as blood-oxygen-level-dependent functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (BOLD fMRI). However, in spite of its importance, capillary transit time distribution has been challenging to quantify comprehensively and efficiently at the microscopic level. Here, we introduce a method, called Dynamic Contrast Optical Coherence Tomography (DyC-OCT), based on dynamic cross-sectional OCT imaging of an intravascular tracer as it passes through the field-of-view. Quantitative transit time metrics are derived from temporal analysis of the dynamic scattering signal, closely related to tracer concentration. Since DyC-OCT does not require calibration of the optical focus, quantitative accuracy is achieved even deep in highly scattering brain tissue where the focal spot degrades. After direct validation of DyC-OCT against dilution curves measured using a fluorescent plasma label in surface pial vessels, we used DyC-OCT to investigate the transit time distribution in microvasculature across the entire depth of the mouse somatosensory cortex. Laminar trends were identified, with earlier transit times and less heterogeneity in the middle cortical layers. The early transit times in the middle cortical layers may explain, at least in part, the early BOLD fMRI onset times observed in these layers. The layer-dependencies in heterogeneity may help explain how a single vascular supply manages to deliver oxygen to individual cortical layers with diverse metabolic needs. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Auditory-somatosensory bimodal stimulation desynchronizes brain circuitry to reduce tinnitus in guinea pigs and humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marks, Kendra L; Martel, David T; Wu, Calvin; Basura, Gregory J; Roberts, Larry E; Schvartz-Leyzac, Kara C; Shore, Susan E

    2018-01-03

    The dorsal cochlear nucleus is the first site of multisensory convergence in mammalian auditory pathways. Principal output neurons, the fusiform cells, integrate auditory nerve inputs from the cochlea with somatosensory inputs from the head and neck. In previous work, we developed a guinea pig model of tinnitus induced by noise exposure and showed that the fusiform cells in these animals exhibited increased spontaneous activity and cross-unit synchrony, which are physiological correlates of tinnitus. We delivered repeated bimodal auditory-somatosensory stimulation to the dorsal cochlear nucleus of guinea pigs with tinnitus, choosing a stimulus interval known to induce long-term depression (LTD). Twenty minutes per day of LTD-inducing bimodal (but not unimodal) stimulation reduced physiological and behavioral evidence of tinnitus in the guinea pigs after 25 days. Next, we applied the same bimodal treatment to 20 human subjects with tinnitus using a double-blinded, sham-controlled, crossover study. Twenty-eight days of LTD-inducing bimodal stimulation reduced tinnitus loudness and intrusiveness. Unimodal auditory stimulation did not deliver either benefit. Bimodal auditory-somatosensory stimulation that induces LTD in the dorsal cochlear nucleus may hold promise for suppressing chronic tinnitus, which reduces quality of life for millions of tinnitus sufferers worldwide. Copyright © 2018 The Authors, some rights reserved; exclusive licensee American Association for the Advancement of Science. No claim to original U.S. Government Works.

  6. Activity in the primary somatosensory cortex induced by reflexological stimulation is unaffected by pseudo-information: a functional magnetic resonance imaging study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miura, Naoki; Akitsuki, Yuko; Sekiguchi, Atsushi; Kawashima, Ryuta

    2013-05-27

    Reflexology is an alternative medical practice that produces beneficial effects by applying pressure to specific reflex areas. Our previous study suggested that reflexological stimulation induced cortical activation in somatosensory cortex corresponding to the stimulated reflex area; however, we could not rule out the possibility of a placebo effect resulting from instructions given during the experimental task. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to investigate how reflexological stimulation of the reflex area is processed in the primary somatosensory cortex when correct and pseudo-information about the reflex area is provided. Furthermore, the laterality of activation to the reflexological stimulation was investigated. Thirty-two healthy Japanese volunteers participated. The experiment followed a double-blind design. Half of the subjects received correct information, that the base of the second toe was the eye reflex area, and pseudo-information, that the base of the third toe was the shoulder reflex area. The other half of the subjects received the opposite information. fMRI time series data were acquired during reflexological stimulation to both feet. The experimenter stimulated each reflex area in accordance with an auditory cue. The fMRI data were analyzed using a conventional two-stage approach. The hemodynamic responses produced by the stimulation of each reflex area were assessed using a general linear model on an intra-subject basis, and a two-way repeated-measures analysis of variance was performed on an intersubject basis to determine the effect of reflex area laterality and information accuracy. Our results indicated that stimulation of the eye reflex area in either foot induced activity in the left middle postcentral gyrus, the area to which tactile sensation to the face projects, as well as in the postcentral gyrus contralateral foot representation area. This activity was not affected by pseudo information. The results also indicate

  7. Activity in the primary somatosensory cortex induced by reflexological stimulation is unaffected by pseudo-information: a functional magnetic resonance imaging study

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    Background Reflexology is an alternative medical practice that produces beneficial effects by applying pressure to specific reflex areas. Our previous study suggested that reflexological stimulation induced cortical activation in somatosensory cortex corresponding to the stimulated reflex area; however, we could not rule out the possibility of a placebo effect resulting from instructions given during the experimental task. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to investigate how reflexological stimulation of the reflex area is processed in the primary somatosensory cortex when correct and pseudo-information about the reflex area is provided. Furthermore, the laterality of activation to the reflexological stimulation was investigated. Methods Thirty-two healthy Japanese volunteers participated. The experiment followed a double-blind design. Half of the subjects received correct information, that the base of the second toe was the eye reflex area, and pseudo-information, that the base of the third toe was the shoulder reflex area. The other half of the subjects received the opposite information. fMRI time series data were acquired during reflexological stimulation to both feet. The experimenter stimulated each reflex area in accordance with an auditory cue. The fMRI data were analyzed using a conventional two-stage approach. The hemodynamic responses produced by the stimulation of each reflex area were assessed using a general linear model on an intra-subject basis, and a two-way repeated-measures analysis of variance was performed on an intersubject basis to determine the effect of reflex area laterality and information accuracy. Results Our results indicated that stimulation of the eye reflex area in either foot induced activity in the left middle postcentral gyrus, the area to which tactile sensation to the face projects, as well as in the postcentral gyrus contralateral foot representation area. This activity was not affected by pseudo information

  8. The third-stimulus temporal discrimination threshold: focusing on the temporal processing of sensory input within primary somatosensory cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leodori, Giorgio; Formica, Alessandra; Zhu, Xiaoying; Conte, Antonella; Belvisi, Daniele; Cruccu, Giorgio; Hallett, Mark; Berardelli, Alfredo

    2017-10-01

    The somatosensory temporal discrimination threshold (STDT) has been used in recent years to investigate time processing of sensory information, but little is known about the physiological correlates of somatosensory temporal discrimination. The objective of this study was to investigate whether the time interval required to discriminate between two stimuli varies according to the number of stimuli in the task. We used the third-stimulus temporal discrimination threshold (ThirdDT), defined as the shortest time interval at which an individual distinguishes a third stimulus following a pair of stimuli delivered at the STDT. The STDT and ThirdDT were assessed in 31 healthy subjects. In a subgroup of 10 subjects, we evaluated the effects of the stimuli intensity on the ThirdDT. In a subgroup of 16 subjects, we evaluated the effects of S1 continuous theta-burst stimulation (S1-cTBS) on the STDT and ThirdDT. Results show that ThirdDT is shorter than STDT. We found a positive correlation between STDT and ThirdDT values. As long as the stimulus intensity was within the perceivable and painless range, it did not affect ThirdDT values. S1-cTBS significantly affected both STDT and ThirdDT, although the latter was affected to a greater extent and for a longer period of time. We conclude that the interval needed to discriminate between time-separated tactile stimuli is related to the number of stimuli used in the task. STDT and ThirdDT are encoded in S1, probably by a shared tactile temporal encoding mechanism whose performance rapidly changes during the perception process. ThirdDT is a new method to measure somatosensory temporal discrimination. NEW & NOTEWORTHY To investigate whether the time interval required to discriminate between stimuli varies according to changes in the stimulation pattern, we used the third-stimulus temporal discrimination threshold (ThirdDT). We found that the somatosensory temporal discrimination acuity varies according to the number of stimuli in the

  9. Somatosensory Representations Link the Perception of Emotional Expressions and Sensory Experience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kragel, Philip A; LaBar, Kevin S

    2016-01-01

    Studies of human emotion perception have linked a distributed set of brain regions to the recognition of emotion in facial, vocal, and body expressions. In particular, lesions to somatosensory cortex in the right hemisphere have been shown to impair recognition of facial and vocal expressions of emotion. Although these findings suggest that somatosensory cortex represents body states associated with distinct emotions, such as a furrowed brow or gaping jaw, functional evidence directly linking somatosensory activity and subjective experience during emotion perception is critically lacking. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging and multivariate decoding techniques, we show that perceiving vocal and facial expressions of emotion yields hemodynamic activity in right somatosensory cortex that discriminates among emotion categories, exhibits somatotopic organization, and tracks self-reported sensory experience. The findings both support embodied accounts of emotion and provide mechanistic insight into how emotional expressions are capable of biasing subjective experience in those who perceive them.

  10. The coincident activation of lemniscal and paralemniscal inputs can drive synaptic plasticity in layer 2/3 pyramidal neurons of the mouse somatosensory cortex in vivo

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vassilis Kehayas

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Structural plasticity in the somatosensory cortex is maintained throughout life. In adult animals structural changes occur at the level of dendritic spines and axonal boutons in response to alterations in sensory experience. The causal relationship between synaptic activity and structural changes, however, is not clear. Hebbian-plasticity models predict that synapses will be stabilized at the nodes of neuronal networks that display high levels of coincident activity. Here, we aim at studying the effects of a targeted increase in coincident activity between segregated inputs on pyramidal cell synapses of the mouse somatosensory barrel cortex in vivo. Supragranular layers of the barrel cortex receive anatomically distinct inputs from two thalamic pathways: the ‘lemniscal’ pathway that originates in the ventral posteromedial (VPM nucleus and projects in a whisker-specific fashion to the barrel columns, and the ‘paralemniscal’ pathway that originates in the posteromedial (POm nucleus and projects to the cortex in a non-specific manner. Previous work from our lab shows that rhythmic (8Hz whisker stimulation-evoked LTP (RWS-LTP in layer (L 2/3 pyramidal cells relies on the combined activity of lemniscal and paralemniscal pathways. Here, we targeted ChR2 expression to POm neurons using AAV-mediated gene transfer in order to optically control the activity of those inputs. As a first step, we show that photostimulation of the POm nucleus induces NMDA-dependent, sub-threshold responses in L2/3 pyramidal cells similar to those that are required for the induction of RWS-LTP. In addition, simultaneous photostimulation of POm neurons together with whisker stimulation at low frequencies (1Hz can also elicit LTP, suggesting that coincident lemniscal and paralemniscal input can drive LTP induction. Next, we combined the ChR2-tdTomato expression in POm neurons with sparse AAV-mediated eGFP expression in L2/3 pyramidal cells in order to study the effects

  11. Factors Affecting Volume Changes of the Somatosensory Cortex in Patients with Spinal Cord Injury: To Be Considered for Future Neuroprosthetic Design

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    Yvonne Höller

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Spinal cord injury (SCI leads to severe chronic disability, but also to secondary adaptive changes upstream to the injury in the brain which are most likely induced due to the lack of afferent information. These neuroplastic changes are a potential target for innovative therapies such as neuroprostheses, e.g., by stimulation in order to evoke sensation or in order to suppress phantom limb pain. Diverging results on gray matter atrophy have been reported in patients with SCI. Detectability of atrophy seems to depend on the selection of the regions of interest, while whole-brain approaches are not sensitive enough. In this study, we discussed previous research approaches and analyzed differential atrophic changes in incomplete SCI using manual segmentation of the somatosensory cortex. Patients with incomplete SCI (ASIA C-D, with cervical (N = 5 and thoracic (N = 6 injury were included. Time since injury was ≤12 months in 7 patients, and 144, 152, 216, and 312 months in the other patients. Age at the injury was ≤26 years in 4 patients and ≥50 years in 7 patients. A sample of 12 healthy controls was included in the study. In contrast to all previous studies that used voxel-based morphometry, we performed manual segmentation of the somatosensory cortex in the postcentral gyrus from structural magnetic resonance images and normalized the calculated volumes against the sum of volumes of an automated whole-head segmentation. Volumes were smaller in patients than in controls (p = 0.011, and as a tendency, female patients had smaller volumes than male patients (p = 0.017, uncorrected. No effects of duration (subacute vs. chronic, level of lesion (cervical vs. thoracic, region (left vs. right S1, and age at onset (≤26 vs. ≥50 years was found. Our results demonstrate volume loss of S1 in incomplete SCI and encourage further research with larger sample sizes on volumetric changes in the acute and chronic stage of SCI, in

  12. Corticothalamic and corticotectal somatosensory projections from the anterior ectosylvian sulcus (SIV cortex) in neonatal cats: an anatomical demonstration with HRP and 3H-leucine

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McHaffie, J.G.; Kruger, L.; Clemo, H.R.; Stein, B.E.

    1988-01-01

    Corticothalamic and corticotectal projections from the anterior ectosylvian sulcus (AES) in neonatal cats were studied with anterograde and retrograde neuroanatomical techniques. When the injection site was relatively restricted to the sulcal walls and fundus of the rostral AES (i.e., the SIV cortex), heavy ipsilateral thalamic label was observed in the medial subdivision of the posterior group, in the suprageniculate nucleus, and in the external medullary lamina. No terminal label was seen in the contralateral thalamus although the contralateral homotopic cortex was heavily labeled. Within the ventrobasal complex (VB), dense axonal label was observed in fascicles that traversed VB, but only light terminal label was observed within VB itself. However, in cases where the tracer spread into adjacent SII, terminal label in VB was pronounced. Similarly, when the injection site extended into auditory cortex, terminal label was observed in the lateral and intermediate subdivisions of the posterior group. Rostral AES injections produced distinct, predominantly ipsilateral, terminal label in the superior colliculus that was distributed in two tiers: a discontinuous band in the stratum griseum intermedium and a more diffuse band in stratum griseum profundum. Caudally, dense terminal label was seen in the intercollicular zone and dorsolateral periaqueductal gray. When the injection site did not include rostral AES, no label was observed in the superior colliculus. Horseradish peroxidase injections into the superior colliculus of neonates produced retrogradely labeled neurons throughout the AES, but none was found on the crown of the gyrus where SII is located. Thus, the neonatal corticotectal somatosensory projection arises exclusively from AES and parallels that found in adults

  13. [Neurophysiological investigations of information processing in the somato-sensory system].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kunesch, E

    2009-08-01

    The ability of the human hand to perform complex sensorimotor tasks such as tactile exploration and grasping is based on 1. exact encoding of somatosensory information by cutaneous mechanoreceptors, 2. elaborated processing of afferent signals in somatosensory relay stations and cortex fields, 3. rapid and effective interaction of sensory feedback with motor programs, and 4. different modes of sensory control, which can be switched over. (c) Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart-New York.

  14. Approach motivation in human cerebral cortex

    OpenAIRE

    Casasanto, Daniel; Brookshire, Geoffrey

    2018-01-01

    Different regions of the human cerebral cortex are specialized for different emotions, but the principles underlying this specialization have remained unknown. According to the sword and shield hypothesis, hemispheric specialization for affective motivation, a basic dimension of human emotion, varies across individuals according to the way they use their hands to perform approach- and avoidance-related actions. In a test of this hypothesis, here we measured approach motivation before and afte...

  15. Sacral nerve stimulation increases activation of the primary somatosensory cortex by anal canal stimulation in an experimental model.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Griffin, K M

    2011-08-01

    Sacral and posterior tibial nerve stimulation may be used to treat faecal incontinence; however, the mechanism of action is unknown. The aim of this study was to establish whether sensory activation of the cerebral cortex by anal canal stimulation was increased by peripheral neuromodulation.

  16. Spiking in primary somatosensory cortex during natural whisking in awake head-restrained rats is cell-type specific

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Kock, C.P.J.; Sakmann, B.

    2009-01-01

    Sensation involves active movement of sensory organs, but it remains unknown how position or movement of sensory organs is encoded in cortex. In the rat whisker system, each whisker is represented by an individual cortical (barrel) column. Here, we quantified in awake, head-fixed rats the impact of

  17. Feedforward motor information enhances somatosensory responses and sharpens angular tuning of rat S1 barrel cortex neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khateb, Mohamed; Schiller, Jackie; Schiller, Yitzhak

    2017-01-06

    The primary vibrissae motor cortex (vM1) is responsible for generating whisking movements. In parallel, vM1 also sends information directly to the sensory barrel cortex (vS1). In this study, we investigated the effects of vM1 activation on processing of vibrissae sensory information in vS1 of the rat. To dissociate the vibrissae sensory-motor loop, we optogenetically activated vM1 and independently passively stimulated principal vibrissae. Optogenetic activation of vM1 supra-linearly amplified the response of vS1 neurons to passive vibrissa stimulation in all cortical layers measured. Maximal amplification occurred when onset of vM1 optogenetic activation preceded vibrissa stimulation by 20 ms. In addition to amplification, vM1 activation also sharpened angular tuning of vS1 neurons in all cortical layers measured. Our findings indicated that in addition to output motor signals, vM1 also sends preparatory signals to vS1 that serve to amplify and sharpen the response of neurons in the barrel cortex to incoming sensory input signals.

  18. Direct and crossed effects of somatosensory stimulation on neuronal excitability and motor performance in humans

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Veldman, M. P.; Maffiuletti, N. A.; Hallett, M.; Zijdewind, I.; Hortobagyi, T.

    2014-01-01

    This analytic review reports how prolonged periods of somatosensory electric stimulation (SES) with repetitive transcutaneous nerve stimulation can have 'direct' and 'crossed' effects on brain activation, corticospinal excitability, and motor performance. A review of 26 studies involving 315 healthy

  19. Maps of space in human frontoparietal cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jerde, Trenton A; Curtis, Clayton E

    2013-12-01

    Prefrontal cortex (PFC) and posterior parietal cortex (PPC) are neural substrates for spatial cognition. We here review studies in which we tested the hypothesis that human frontoparietal cortex may function as a priority map. According to priority map theory, objects or locations in the visual world are represented by neural activity that is proportional to their attentional priority. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), we first identified topographic maps in PFC and PPC as candidate priority maps of space. We then measured fMRI activity in candidate priority maps during the delay periods of a covert attention task, a spatial working memory task, and a motor planning task to test whether the activity depended on the particular spatial cognition. Our hypothesis was that some, but not all, candidate priority maps in PFC and PPC would be agnostic with regard to what was being prioritized, in that their activity would reflect the location in space across tasks rather than a particular kind of spatial cognition (e.g., covert attention). To test whether patterns of delay period activity were interchangeable during the spatial cognitive tasks, we used multivariate classifiers. We found that decoders trained to predict the locations on one task (e.g., working memory) cross-predicted the locations on the other tasks (e.g., covert attention and motor planning) in superior precentral sulcus (sPCS) and in a region of intraparietal sulcus (IPS2), suggesting that these patterns of maintenance activity may be interchangeable across the tasks. Such properties make sPCS in frontal cortex and IPS2 in parietal cortex viable priority map candidates, and suggest that these areas may be the human homologs of the monkey frontal eye field (FEF) and lateral intraparietal area (LIP). Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Hypergravity exposure decreases gamma-aminobutyric acid immunoreactivity in axon terminals contacting pyramidal cells in the rat somatosensory cortex: a quantitative immunocytochemical image analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Amelio, F.; Wu, L. C.; Fox, R. A.; Daunton, N. G.; Corcoran, M. L.; Polyakov, I.

    1998-01-01

    Quantitative evaluation of gamma-aminobutyric acid immunoreactivity (GABA-IR) in the hindlimb representation of the rat somatosensory cortex after 14 days of exposure to hypergravity (hyper-G) was conducted by using computer-assisted image processing. The area of GABA-IR axosomatic terminals apposed to pyramidal cells of cortical layer V was reduced in rats exposed to hyper-G compared with control rats, which were exposed either to rotation alone or to vivarium conditions. Based on previous immunocytochemical and behavioral studies, we suggest that this reduction is due to changes in sensory feedback information from muscle receptors. Consequently, priorities for muscle recruitment are altered at the cortical level, and a new pattern of muscle activity is thus generated. It is proposed that the reduction observed in GABA-IR of the terminal area around pyramidal neurons is the immunocytochemical expression of changes in the activity of GABAergic cells that participate in reprogramming motor outputs to achieve effective movement control in response to alterations in the afferent information.

  1. Right secondary somatosensory cortex-a promising novel target for the treatment of drug-resistant neuropathic orofacial pain with repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindholm, Pauliina; Lamusuo, Salla; Taiminen, Tero; Pesonen, Ullamari; Lahti, Ari; Virtanen, Arja; Forssell, Heli; Hietala, Jarmo; Hagelberg, Nora; Pertovaara, Antti; Parkkola, Riitta; Jääskeläinen, Satu

    2015-07-01

    High-frequency repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) of the motor cortex has analgesic effect; however, the efficacy of other cortical targets and the mode of action remain unclear. We examined the effects of rTMS in neuropathic orofacial pain, and compared 2 cortical targets against placebo. Furthermore, as dopaminergic mechanisms modulate pain responses, we assessed the influence of the functional DRD2 gene polymorphism (957C>T) and the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met polymorphism on the analgesic effect of rTMS. Sixteen patients with chronic drug-resistant neuropathic orofacial pain participated in this randomized, placebo-controlled, crossover study. Navigated high-frequency rTMS was given to the sensorimotor (S1/M1) and the right secondary somatosensory (S2) cortices. All subjects were genotyped for the DRD2 957C>T and COMT Val158Met polymorphisms. Pain, mood, and quality of life were monitored throughout the study. The numerical rating scale pain scores were significantly lower after the S2 stimulation than after the S1/M1 (P = 0.0071) or the sham (P = 0.0187) stimulations. The Brief Pain Inventory scores were also lower 3 to 5 days after the S2 stimulation than those at pretreatment baseline (P = 0.0127 for the intensity of pain and P = 0.0074 for the interference of pain) or after the S1/M1 (P = 0.001 and P = 0.0001) and sham (P = 0.0491 and P = 0.0359) stimulations. No correlations were found between the genetic polymorphisms and the analgesic effect in the present small clinical sample. The right S2 cortex is a promising new target for the treatment of neuropathic orofacial pain with high-frequency rTMS.

  2. Context-Dependent Modulation of Functional Connectivity: Secondary Somatosensory Cortex to Prefrontal Cortex Connections in Two-Stimulus-Interval Discrimination Tasks

    OpenAIRE

    Chow, Stephanie S.; Romo, Ranulfo; Brody, Carlos D.

    2009-01-01

    In a complex world, a sensory cue may prompt different actions in different contexts. A laboratory example of context-dependent sensory processing is the two-stimulus-interval discrimination task. In each trial, a first stimulus (f1) must be stored in short-term memory and later compared with a second stimulus (f2), for the animal to come to a binary decision. Prefrontal cortex (PFC) neurons need to interpret the f1 information in one way (perhaps with a positive weight) and the f2 informatio...

  3. Amodal processing in human prefrontal cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tamber-Rosenau, Benjamin J; Dux, Paul E; Tombu, Michael N; Asplund, Christopher L; Marois, René

    2013-07-10

    Information enters the cortex via modality-specific sensory regions, whereas actions are produced by modality-specific motor regions. Intervening central stages of information processing map sensation to behavior. Humans perform this central processing in a flexible, abstract manner such that sensory information in any modality can lead to response via any motor system. Cognitive theories account for such flexible behavior by positing amodal central information processing (e.g., "central executive," Baddeley and Hitch, 1974; "supervisory attentional system," Norman and Shallice, 1986; "response selection bottleneck," Pashler, 1994). However, the extent to which brain regions embodying central mechanisms of information processing are amodal remains unclear. Here we apply multivariate pattern analysis to functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) data to compare response selection, a cognitive process widely believed to recruit an amodal central resource across sensory and motor modalities. We show that most frontal and parietal cortical areas known to activate across a wide variety of tasks code modality, casting doubt on the notion that these regions embody a central processor devoid of modality representation. Importantly, regions of anterior insula and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex consistently failed to code modality across four experiments. However, these areas code at least one other task dimension, process (instantiated as response selection vs response execution), ensuring that failure to find coding of modality is not driven by insensitivity of multivariate pattern analysis in these regions. We conclude that abstract encoding of information modality is primarily a property of subregions of the prefrontal cortex.

  4. Cellular and circuit mechanisms maintain low spike co-variability and enhance population coding in somatosensory cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cheng eLy

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available The responses of cortical neurons are highly variable across repeated presentations of a stimulus. Understanding this variability is critical for theories of both sensory and motor processing, since response variance affects the accuracy of neural codes. Despite this influence, the cellular and circuit mechanisms that shape the trial-to-trial variability of population responses remain poorly understood. We used a combination of experimental and computational techniques to uncover the mechanisms underlying response variability of populations of pyramidal (E cells in layer 2/3 of rat whisker barrel cortex. Spike trains recorded from pairs of E-cells during either spontaneous activity or whisker deflected responses show similarly low levels of spiking co-variability, despite large differences in network activation between the two states. We developed network models that show how spike threshold nonlinearities dilutes E-cell spiking co-variability during spontaneous activity and low velocity whisker deflections. In contrast, during high velocity whisker deflections, cancelation mechanisms mediated by feedforward inhibition maintain low E-cell pairwise co-variability. Thus, the combination of these two mechanisms ensure low E-cell population variability over a wide range of whisker deflection velocities. Finally, we show how this active decorrelation of population variability leads to a drastic increase in the population information about whisker velocity. The canonical cellular and circuit components of our study suggest that low network variability over a broad range of neural states may generalize across the nervous system.

  5. Beta oscillations define discrete perceptual cycles in the somatosensory domain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baumgarten, Thomas J; Schnitzler, Alfons; Lange, Joachim

    2015-09-29

    Whether seeing a movie, listening to a song, or feeling a breeze on the skin, we coherently experience these stimuli as continuous, seamless percepts. However, there are rare perceptual phenomena that argue against continuous perception but, instead, suggest discrete processing of sensory input. Empirical evidence supporting such a discrete mechanism, however, remains scarce and comes entirely from the visual domain. Here, we demonstrate compelling evidence for discrete perceptual sampling in the somatosensory domain. Using magnetoencephalography (MEG) and a tactile temporal discrimination task in humans, we find that oscillatory alpha- and low beta-band (8-20 Hz) cycles in primary somatosensory cortex represent neurophysiological correlates of discrete perceptual cycles. Our results agree with several theoretical concepts of discrete perceptual sampling and empirical evidence of perceptual cycles in the visual domain. Critically, these results show that discrete perceptual cycles are not domain-specific, and thus restricted to the visual domain, but extend to the somatosensory domain.

  6. Effects of face/head and whole body cooling during passive heat stress on human somatosensory processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakata, Hiroki; Namba, Mari; Kakigi, Ryusuke; Shibasaki, Manabu

    2017-06-01

    We herein investigated the effects of face/head and whole body cooling during passive heat stress on human somatosensory processing recorded by somatosensory-evoked potentials (SEPs) at C4' and Fz electrodes. Fourteen healthy subjects received a median nerve stimulation at the left wrist. SEPs were recorded at normothermic baseline (Rest), when esophageal temperature had increased by ~1.2°C (heat stress: HS) during passive heating, face/head cooling during passive heating (face/head cooling: FHC), and after HS (whole body cooling: WBC). The latencies and amplitudes of P14, N20, P25, N35, P45, and N60 at C4' and P14, N18, P22, and N30 at Fz were evaluated. Latency indicated speed of the subcortical and cortical somatosensory processing, while amplitude reflected the strength of neural activity. Blood flow in the internal and common carotid arteries (ICA and CCA, respectively) and psychological comfort were recorded in each session. Increases in esophageal temperature due to HS significantly decreased the amplitude of N60, psychological comfort, and ICA blood flow in the HS session, and also shortened the latencies of SEPs (all, P body temperature. Copyright © 2017 the American Physiological Society.

  7. Simultaneous acoustic stimulation of human primary and secondary somatosensory cortices using transcranial focused ultrasound.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Wonhye; Chung, Yong An; Jung, Yujin; Song, In-Uk; Yoo, Seung-Schik

    2016-10-26

    Transcranial focused ultrasound (FUS) is gaining momentum as a novel non-invasive brain stimulation method, with promising potential for superior spatial resolution and depth penetration compared to transcranial magnetic stimulation or transcranial direct current stimulation. We examined the presence of tactile sensations elicited by FUS stimulation of two separate brain regions in humans-the primary (SI) and secondary (SII) somatosensory areas of the hand, as guided by individual-specific functional magnetic resonance imaging data. Under image-guidance, acoustic stimulations were delivered to the SI and SII areas either separately or simultaneously. The SII areas were divided into sub-regions that are activated by four types of external tactile sensations to the palmar side of the right hand-vibrotactile, pressure, warmth, and coolness. Across the stimulation conditions (SI only, SII only, SI and SII simultaneously), participants reported various types of tactile sensations that arose from the hand contralateral to the stimulation, such as the palm/back of the hand or as single/neighboring fingers. The type of tactile sensations did not match the sensations that are associated with specific sub-regions in the SII. The neuro-stimulatory effects of FUS were transient and reversible, and the procedure did not cause any adverse changes or discomforts in the subject's mental/physical status. The use of multiple FUS transducers allowed for simultaneous stimulation of the SI/SII in the same hemisphere and elicited various tactile sensations in the absence of any external sensory stimuli. Stimulation of the SII area alone could also induce perception of tactile sensations. The ability to stimulate multiple brain areas in a spatially restricted fashion can be used to study causal relationships between regional brain activities and their cognitive/behavioral outcomes.

  8. Steady-state dynamics and experience-dependent plasticity of dendritic spines of layer 4/5a pyramidal neurons in somatosensory cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amaya Miquelajauregui

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available The steady state dynamics and experience-dependent plasticity of dendritic spines of layer (L 2/3 and L5B cortical pyramidal neurons have recently been assessed using in vivo two-photon microscopy (Trachtenberg et al., 2002; Zuo et al., 2005; Holtmaat et al., 2006. In contrast, not much is known about spine dynamics in L4/5a neurons, regarded as direct recipients of thalamocortical input (Constantinople and Bruno, 2013. In the adult mouse somatosensory cortex (SCx, the transcription factor Ebf2 is enriched in excitatory neurons of L4/5a, including pyramidal neurons. We assessed the molecular and electrophysiological properties of these neurons as well as the morphology of their apical tufts (Scholl analysis and cortical outputs (optogenetics within the SCx. To test the hypothesis that L4/5a pyramidal neurons play an important role in sensory processing (given their key laminar position; soma depth ~450-480 µm, we successfully labeled them in Ebf2-Cre mice with EGFP by expressing recombinant rAAV vectors in utero. Using longitudinal in vivo two-photon microscopy through a craniotomy (Mostany and Portera-Cailliau, 2008, we repeatedly imaged spines in apical dendritic tufts of L4/5a neurons under basal conditions and after sensory deprivation. Under steady-state conditions in adults, the morphology of the apical tufts and the mean spine density were stable at 0.39 ± 0.05 spines/μm (comparable to L5B, Mostany et al., 2011. Interestingly, spine elimination increases 4-8 days after sensory deprivation, probably due to input loss. This suggests that Ebf2+ L4/5a neurons could be involved in early steps of processing of thalamocortical information.

  9. Enriched housing enhances recovery of limb placement ability and reduces aggrecan-containing perineuronal nets in the rat somatosensory cortex after experimental stroke.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexandre Madinier

    Full Text Available Stroke causes life long disabilities where few therapeutic options are available. Using electrical and magnetic stimulation of the brain and physical rehabilitation, recovery of brain function can be enhanced even late after stroke. Animal models support this notion, and housing rodents in an enriched environment (EE several days after experimental stroke stimulates lost brain function by multisensory mechanisms. We studied the dynamics of functional recovery of rats with a lesion to the fore and hind limb motor areas induced by photothrombosis (PT, and with subsequent housing in either standard (STD or EE. In this model, skilled motor function is not significantly enhanced by enriched housing, while the speed of recovery of sensori-motor function substantially improves over the 9-week study period. In particular, this stroke lesion completely obliterates the fore and hind limb placing ability when visual and whisker guidance is prevented, a deficit that persists for up to 9 weeks of recovery, but that is markedly restored within 2 weeks by enriched housing. Enriched housing after stroke also leads to a significant loss of perineuronal net (PNN immunoreactivity; detection of aggrecan protein backbone with AB1031 antibody was decreased by 13-22%, and labelling of a glycan moiety of aggrecan with Cat-315 antibody was reduced by 25-30% in the peri-infarct area and in the somatosensory cortex, respectively. The majority of these cells are parvalbumin/GABA inhibitory interneurons that are important in sensori-information processing. We conclude that damage to the fore and hind limb motor areas provides a model of loss of limb placing response without visual guidance, a deficit also seen in more than 50% of stroke patients. This loss is amenable to recovery induced by multiple sensory stimulation and correlates with a decrease in aggrecan-containing PNNs around inhibitory interneurons. Modulating the PNN structure after ischemic damage may provide new

  10. Rod microglia: elongation, alignment, and coupling to form trains across the somatosensory cortex after experimental diffuse brain injury

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ziebell Jenna M

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Since their discovery, the morphology of microglia has been interpreted to mirror their function, with ramified microglia constantly surveying the micro-environment and rapidly activating when changes occur. In 1899, Franz Nissl discovered what we now recognize as a distinct microglial activation state, microglial rod cells (Stäbchenzellen, which he observed adjacent to neurons. These rod-shaped microglia are typically found in human autopsy cases of paralysis of the insane, a disease of the pre-penicillin era, and best known today from HIV-1-infected brains. Microglial rod cells have been implicated in cortical ‘synaptic stripping’ but their exact role has remained unclear. This is due at least in part to a scarcity of experimental models. Now we have noted these rod microglia after experimental diffuse brain injury in brain regions that have an associated sensory sensitivity. Here, we describe the time course, location, and surrounding architecture associated with rod microglia following experimental diffuse traumatic brain injury (TBI. Methods Rats were subjected to a moderate midline fluid percussion injury (mFPI, which resulted in transient suppression of their righting reflex (6 to 10 min. Multiple immunohistochemistry protocols targeting microglia with Iba1 and other known microglia markers were undertaken to identify the morphological activation of microglia. Additionally, labeling with Iba1 and cell markers for neurons and astrocytes identified the architecture that surrounds these rod cells. Results We identified an abundance of Iba1-positive microglia with rod morphology in the primary sensory barrel fields (S1BF. Although present for at least 4 weeks post mFPI, they developed over the first week, peaking at 7 days post-injury. In the absence of contusion, Iba1-positive microglia appear to elongate with their processes extending from the apical and basal ends. These cells then abut one another and lay adjacent

  11. The effect of water immersion on short-latency somatosensory evoked potentials in human

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sato Daisuke

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Water immersion therapy is used to treat a variety of cardiovascular, respiratory, and orthopedic conditions. It can also benefit some neurological patients, although little is known about the effects of water immersion on neural activity, including somatosensory processing. To this end, we examined the effect of water immersion on short-latency somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs elicited by median nerve stimuli. Short-latency SEP recordings were obtained for ten healthy male volunteers at rest in or out of water at 30°C. Recordings were obtained from nine scalp electrodes according to the 10-20 system. The right median nerve at the wrist was electrically stimulated with the stimulus duration of 0.2 ms at 3 Hz. The intensity of the stimulus was fixed at approximately three times the sensory threshold. Results Water immersion significantly reduced the amplitudes of the short-latency SEP components P25 and P45 measured from electrodes over the parietal region and the P45 measured by central region. Conclusions Water immersion reduced short-latency SEP components known to originate in several cortical areas. Attenuation of short-latency SEPs suggests that water immersion influences the cortical processing of somatosensory inputs. Modulation of cortical processing may contribute to the beneficial effects of aquatic therapy. Trial Registration UMIN-CTR (UMIN000006492

  12. Inhibition in the Human Auditory Cortex.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Koji Inui

    Full Text Available Despite their indispensable roles in sensory processing, little is known about inhibitory interneurons in humans. Inhibitory postsynaptic potentials cannot be recorded non-invasively, at least in a pure form, in humans. We herein sought to clarify whether prepulse inhibition (PPI in the auditory cortex reflected inhibition via interneurons using magnetoencephalography. An abrupt increase in sound pressure by 10 dB in a continuous sound was used to evoke the test response, and PPI was observed by inserting a weak (5 dB increase for 1 ms prepulse. The time course of the inhibition evaluated by prepulses presented at 10-800 ms before the test stimulus showed at least two temporally distinct inhibitions peaking at approximately 20-60 and 600 ms that presumably reflected IPSPs by fast spiking, parvalbumin-positive cells and somatostatin-positive, Martinotti cells, respectively. In another experiment, we confirmed that the degree of the inhibition depended on the strength of the prepulse, but not on the amplitude of the prepulse-evoked cortical response, indicating that the prepulse-evoked excitatory response and prepulse-evoked inhibition reflected activation in two different pathways. Although many diseases such as schizophrenia may involve deficits in the inhibitory system, we do not have appropriate methods to evaluate them; therefore, the easy and non-invasive method described herein may be clinically useful.

  13. Persistent Neuronal Firing in Primary Somatosensory Cortex in the Absence of Working Memory of Trial-Specific Features of the Sample Stimuli in a Haptic Working Memory Task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Liping; Li, Xianchun; Hsiao, Steven S.; Bodner, Mark; Lenz, Fred; Zhou, Yong-Di

    2012-01-01

    Previous studies suggested that primary somatosensory (SI) neurons in well-trained monkeys participated in the haptic-haptic unimodal delayed matching-to-sample (DMS) task. In this study, 585 SI neurons were recorded in monkeys performing a task that was identical to that in the previous studies but without requiring discrimination and active…

  14. Monocular Visual Deprivation Suppresses Excitability in Adult Human Visual Cortex

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lou, Astrid Rosenstand; Madsen, Kristoffer Hougaard; Paulson, Olaf Bjarne

    2011-01-01

    The adult visual cortex maintains a substantial potential for plasticity in response to a change in visual input. For instance, transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) studies have shown that binocular deprivation (BD) increases the cortical excitability for inducing phosphenes with TMS. Here, we...... of visual deprivation has a substantial impact on experience-dependent plasticity of the human visual cortex.......The adult visual cortex maintains a substantial potential for plasticity in response to a change in visual input. For instance, transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) studies have shown that binocular deprivation (BD) increases the cortical excitability for inducing phosphenes with TMS. Here, we...... employed TMS to trace plastic changes in adult visual cortex before, during, and after 48 h of monocular deprivation (MD) of the right dominant eye. In healthy adult volunteers, MD-induced changes in visual cortex excitability were probed with paired-pulse TMS applied to the left and right occipital cortex...

  15. Evaluation of the synuclein-y (SNCG) gene as a PPARy target in murine adipocytes, dorsal root ganglia somatosensory neurons, and human adipose tissue

    Science.gov (United States)

    Synuclein-gamma is highly expressed in both adipocytes and peripheral nervous system (PNS) somatosensory neurons. Its mRNA is induced during adipogenesis, increased in obese human white adipose tissue (WAT), may be coordinately regulated with leptin, and is decreased following treatment of murine 3T...

  16. Cortical thickness development of human primary visual cortex related to the age of blindness onset.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Qiaojun; Song, Ming; Xu, Jiayuan; Qin, Wen; Yu, Chunshui; Jiang, Tianzi

    2017-08-01

    Blindness primarily induces structural alteration in the primary visual cortex (V1). Some studies have found that the early blind subjects had a thicker V1 compared to sighted controls, whereas late blind subjects showed no significant differences in the V1. This implies that the age of blindness onset may exert significant effects on the development of cortical thickness of the V1. However, no previous research used a trajectory of the age of blindness onset-related changes to investigate these effects. Here we explored this issue by mapping the cortical thickness trajectory of the V1 against the age of blindness onset using data from 99 blind individuals whose age of blindness onset ranged from birth to 34 years. We found that the cortical thickness of the V1 could be fitted well with a quadratic curve in both the left (F = 11.59, P = 3 × 10 -5 ) and right hemispheres (F = 6.54, P = 2 × 10 -3 ). Specifically, the cortical thickness of the V1 thinned rapidly during childhood and adolescence and did not change significantly thereafter. This trend was not observed in the primary auditory cortex (A1), primary motor cortex (M1), or primary somatosensory cortex (S1). These results provide evidence that an onset of blindness before adulthood significantly affects the cortical thickness of the V1 and suggest a critical period for cortical development of the human V1.

  17. Neural mechanisms of selective attention in the somatosensory system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gomez-Ramirez, Manuel; Hysaj, Kristjana; Niebur, Ernst

    2016-09-01

    Selective attention allows organisms to extract behaviorally relevant information while ignoring distracting stimuli that compete for the limited resources of their central nervous systems. Attention is highly flexible, and it can be harnessed to select information based on sensory modality, within-modality feature(s), spatial location, object identity, and/or temporal properties. In this review, we discuss the body of work devoted to understanding mechanisms of selective attention in the somatosensory system. In particular, we describe the effects of attention on tactile behavior and corresponding neural activity in somatosensory cortex. Our focus is on neural mechanisms that select tactile stimuli based on their location on the body (somatotopic-based attention) or their sensory feature (feature-based attention). We highlight parallels between selection mechanisms in touch and other sensory systems and discuss several putative neural coding schemes employed by cortical populations to signal the behavioral relevance of sensory inputs. Specifically, we contrast the advantages and disadvantages of using a gain vs. spike-spike correlation code for representing attended sensory stimuli. We favor a neural network model of tactile attention that is composed of frontal, parietal, and subcortical areas that controls somatosensory cells encoding the relevant stimulus features to enable preferential processing throughout the somatosensory hierarchy. Our review is based on data from noninvasive electrophysiological and imaging data in humans as well as single-unit recordings in nonhuman primates. Copyright © 2016 the American Physiological Society.

  18. Inducing homeostatic-like plasticity in human motor cortex through converging corticocortical inputs

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pötter-Nerger, Monika; Fischer, Sarah; Mastroeni, Claudia

    2009-01-01

    Transcranial stimulation techniques have revealed homeostatic-like metaplasticity in the hand area of the human primary motor cortex (M1(HAND)) that controls stimulation-induced changes in corticospinal excitability. Here we combined two interventional protocols that induce long-term depression......TMS) of the left dorsal premotor cortex (PMD) was first applied to produce an LTP-like increase (5 Hz rTMS) or LTD-like decrease (1 Hz rTMS) in corticospinal excitability in left M1(HAND) via premotor-to-motor inputs. Following PMD rTMS, paired-associative stimulation (PAS) was applied to the right median nerve...... and left M1(HAND) to induce spike-time-dependent plasticity in sensory-to-motor inputs to left M1(HAND). We adjusted the interstimulus interval to the N20 latency of the median nerve somatosensory-evoked cortical potential to produce an LTP-like increase (PAS(N20+2ms)) or an LTD-like decrease (PAS(N20-5ms...

  19. Human primary visual cortex topography imaged via positron tomography

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schwartz, E.L.; Christman, D.R.; Wolf, A.P.

    1984-01-01

    The visuotopic structure of primary visual cortex was studied in a group of 7 human volunteers using positron emission transaxial tomography (PETT) and 18 F-labeled 2-deoxy-2-fluoro-D-glucose ([ 18 F]DG). A computer animation was constructed with a spatial structure which was matched to estimates of human cortical magnification factor and to striate cortex stimulus preferences. A lateralized cortical 'checker-board' pattern of [ 18 F]DG was stimulated in primary visual cortex by having subjects view this computer animation following i.v. injection of [ 18 F]DG. The spatial structure of the stimulus was designed to produce an easily recognizable 'signature' in a series of 9 serial PETT scans obtained from each of a group of 7 volunteers. The predicted lateralized topographic 'signature' was observed in 6 of 7 subjects. Applications of this method for further PETT studies of human visual cortex are discussed. (Auth.)

  20. Focal physiological uncoupling of cerebral blood flow and oxidative metabolism during somatosensory stimulation in human subjects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fox, P.T.; Raichle, M.E.

    1986-01-01

    Coupling between cerebral blood flow (CBF) and cerebral metabolic rate of oxygen (CMRO 2 ) was studied using multiple sequential administrations of 15 O-labeled radiotracers and positron emission tomography. In the resting state an excellent correlation between CBF and CMRO 2 was found when paired measurements of CBF and CMRO 2 from multiple (30-48) brain regions were tested in each of 33 normal subjects. Regional uncoupling of CBF and CMRO 2 was found, however, during neuronal activation induced by somatosensory stimulation. Stimulus-induced focal augmentation of cerebral blood flow (29% mean) far exceeded the concomitant local increase in tissue metabolic rate (mean, 5%), when resting-state and stimulated-state measurements were obtained in each of 9 subjects. Stimulus duration had no significant effect on response magnitude or on the degree of CBF-CMRO 2 uncoupling observed. Dynamic, physiological regulation of CBF by a mechanism (neuronal or biochemical) dependent on neuronal firing per se, but independent of the cerebral metabolic rate of oxygen, is hypothesized

  1. Neuromagnetic beta and gamma oscillations in the somatosensory cortex after music training in healthy older adults and a chronic stroke patient.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jamali, Shahab; Fujioka, Takako; Ross, Bernhard

    2014-06-01

    Extensive rehabilitation training can lead to functional improvement even years after a stroke. Although neuronal plasticity is considered as a main origin of such ameliorations, specific subtending mechanisms need further investigation. Our aim was to obtain objective neuromagnetic measures sensitive to brain reorganizations induced by a music-supported training. We applied 20-Hz vibrotactile stimuli to the index finger and the ring finger, recorded somatosensory steady-state responses with magnetoencephalography, and analyzed the cortical sources displaying oscillations synchronized with the external stimuli in two groups of healthy older adults before and after musical training or without training. In addition, we applied the same analysis for an anecdotic report of a single chronic stroke patient with hemiparetic arm and hand problems, who received music-supported therapy (MST). Healthy older adults showed significant finger separation within the primary somatotopic map. Beta dipole sources were more anterior located compared to gamma sources. An anterior shift of sources and increases in synchrony between the stimuli and beta and gamma oscillations were observed selectively after music training. In the stroke patient a normalization of somatotopic organization was observed after MST, with digit separation recovered after training and stimulus induced gamma synchrony increased. The proposed stimulation paradigm captures the integrity of primary somatosensory hand representation. Source position and synchronization between the stimuli and gamma activity are indices, sensitive to music-supported training. Responsiveness was also observed in a chronic stroke patient, encouraging for the music-supported therapy. Notably, changes in somatosensory responses were observed, even though the therapy did not involve specific sensory discrimination training. The proposed protocol can be used for monitoring changes in neuronal organization during training and will improve

  2. Neuronal synchronization in human parietal cortex during saccade planning

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Werf, J. van der; Buchholz, V.N.; Jensen, O.; Medendorp, W.P.

    2009-01-01

    Neuropsychological and neuroimaging studies have implicated the human posterior parietal cortex (PPC) in sensorimotor integration and saccade planning However, the temporal dynamics of the underlying physiology and its relationship to observations in non-human primates have been difficult to pin

  3. Preprocessing of emotional visual information in the human piriform cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schulze, Patrick; Bestgen, Anne-Kathrin; Lech, Robert K; Kuchinke, Lars; Suchan, Boris

    2017-08-23

    This study examines the processing of visual information by the olfactory system in humans. Recent data point to the processing of visual stimuli by the piriform cortex, a region mainly known as part of the primary olfactory cortex. Moreover, the piriform cortex generates predictive templates of olfactory stimuli to facilitate olfactory processing. This study fills the gap relating to the question whether this region is also capable of preprocessing emotional visual information. To gain insight into the preprocessing and transfer of emotional visual information into olfactory processing, we recorded hemodynamic responses during affective priming using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Odors of different valence (pleasant, neutral and unpleasant) were primed by images of emotional facial expressions (happy, neutral and disgust). Our findings are the first to demonstrate that the piriform cortex preprocesses emotional visual information prior to any olfactory stimulation and that the emotional connotation of this preprocessing is subsequently transferred and integrated into an extended olfactory network for olfactory processing.

  4. Monetary reward activates human prefrontal cortex

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Thut, G.; Roelcke, U.; Nienhusmeier, M.; Missimer, J.; Maguire, R.P.; Leenders, K.L.; Schultz, W.

    1997-01-01

    We present a rCBF PET activation study, in which we demonstrated that reward processing in humans activates a cortical-subcortical network including dorsolateral prefrontal, orbital frontal, thalamic and midbrain regions. It is suggested that, as found for non-human primates, the basal ganglia-thalamo-cortical system is implicated in reward processing. (author) 1 fig., 3 refs

  5. Subplate in the developing cortex of mouse and human

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wang, Wei Zhi; Hoerder-Suabedissen, Anna; Oeschger, Franziska M

    2010-01-01

    Abstract The subplate is a largely transient zone containing precocious neurons involved in several key steps of cortical development. The majority of subplate neurons form a compact layer in mouse, but are dispersed throughout a much larger zone in the human. In rodent, subplate neurons are among...... several genes that are specifically expressed in the subplate layer of the rodent dorsal cortex. Here we examined the human subplate for some of these markers. In the human dorsal cortex, connective tissue growth factor-positive neurons can be seen in the ventricular zone at 15-22 postconceptional weeks...... growth factor- and nuclear receptor-related 1-positive cells are two distinct cell populations of the human subplate. Furthermore, our microarray analysis in rodent suggested that subplate neurons produce plasma proteins. Here we demonstrate that the human subplate also expresses alpha2zinc...

  6. Functional sex differences in human primary auditory cortex

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ruytjens, Liesbet; Georgiadis, Janniko R.; Holstege, Gert; Wit, Hero P.; Albers, Frans W. J.; Willemsen, Antoon T. M.

    2007-01-01

    Background We used PET to study cortical activation during auditory stimulation and found sex differences in the human primary auditory cortex (PAC). Regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) was measured in 10 male and 10 female volunteers while listening to sounds (music or white noise) and during a

  7. A functional MRI study of somatotopic representation of somatosensory stimulation in the cerebellum

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Takanashi, M.; Abe, K.; Yanagihara, T.; Sakoda, S. [Dept. of Neurology D4, Osaka Univ. Graduate School of Medicine, Suita City, Osaka (Japan); Tanaka, H.; Hirabuki, N.; Nakamura, H.; Fujita, N. [Dept. of Radiology, Osaka Univ. Graduate School of Medicine, Suita City, Osaka (Japan)

    2003-03-01

    Somatotopic representation in the cerebral cortex of somatosensory stimulation has been widely reported, but that in the cerebellum has not. We investigated the latter in the human cerebellum by functional MRI (fMRI). Using a 1.5 tesla imager, we obtained multislice blood oxygen level-dependent fMRI with single-shot gradient-echo echoplanar imaging in seven right-handed volunteers during electrical stimulation of the left index finger and big toe. In the anterior and posterior cerebellum, activated pixels for the index finger were separate from those for the toe. This suggests that somatosensory stimulation of different parts of the body may involve distinct areas of in the cerebellum as well as the cerebral cortex. (orig.)

  8. A functional MRI study of somatotopic representation of somatosensory stimulation in the cerebellum

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Takanashi, M.; Abe, K.; Yanagihara, T.; Sakoda, S.; Tanaka, H.; Hirabuki, N.; Nakamura, H.; Fujita, N.

    2003-01-01

    Somatotopic representation in the cerebral cortex of somatosensory stimulation has been widely reported, but that in the cerebellum has not. We investigated the latter in the human cerebellum by functional MRI (fMRI). Using a 1.5 tesla imager, we obtained multislice blood oxygen level-dependent fMRI with single-shot gradient-echo echoplanar imaging in seven right-handed volunteers during electrical stimulation of the left index finger and big toe. In the anterior and posterior cerebellum, activated pixels for the index finger were separate from those for the toe. This suggests that somatosensory stimulation of different parts of the body may involve distinct areas of in the cerebellum as well as the cerebral cortex. (orig.)

  9. Steady-state evoked potentials to study the processing of tactile and nociceptive somatosensory input in the human brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colon, E; Legrain, V; Mouraux, A

    2012-10-01

    The periodic presentation of a sensory stimulus induces, at certain frequencies of stimulation, a sustained electroencephalographic response of corresponding frequency, known as steady-state evoked potentials (SS-EP). In visual, auditory and vibrotactile modalities, studies have shown that SS-EP reflect mainly activity originating from early, modality-specific sensory cortices. Furthermore, it has been shown that SS-EP have several advantages over the recording of transient event-related brain potentials (ERP), such as a high signal-to-noise ratio, a shorter time to obtain reliable signals, and the capacity to frequency-tag the cortical activity elicited by concurrently presented sensory stimuli. Recently, we showed that SS-EP can be elicited by the selective activation of skin nociceptors and that nociceptive SS-EP reflect the activity of a population of neurons that is spatially distinct from the somatotopically-organized population of neurons underlying vibrotactile SS-EP. Hence, the recording of SS-EP offers a unique opportunity to study the cortical representation of nociception and touch in humans, and to explore their potential crossmodal interactions. Here, (1) we review available methods to achieve the rapid periodic stimulation of somatosensory afferents required to elicit SS-EP, (2) review previous studies that have characterized vibrotactile and nociceptive SS-EP, (3) discuss the nature of the recorded signals and their relationship with transient event-related potentials and (4) outline future perspectives and potential clinical applications of this technique. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  10. Decoding color responses in human visual cortex

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kuriki, Ichiro; Matsumiya, Kazumichi; Shioiri, Satoshi; Nakamura, Shingo; Sun, Pei; Ueno, Kenichi; Tanaka, Keiji; Cheng, Kang

    2011-01-01

    Color percept is a subjective experience and, in general, it is impossible for other people to tell someone's color percept. The present study demonstrated that the simple image-classification analysis of brain activity obtained by a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) technique enables to tell which of four colors the subject is looking at. Our results also imply that color information is coded by the responses of hue-selective neurons in human brain, not by the combinations of red-green and blue-yellow hue components. (author)

  11. Spindle neurons of the human anterior cingulate cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nimchinsky, E. A.; Vogt, B. A.; Morrison, J. H.; Hof, P. R.; Bloom, F. E. (Principal Investigator)

    1995-01-01

    The human anterior cingulate cortex is distinguished by the presence of an unusual cell type, a large spindle neuron in layer Vb. This cell has been noted numerous times in the historical literature but has not been studied with modern neuroanatomic techniques. For instance, details regarding the neuronal class to which these cells belong and regarding their precise distribution along both ventrodorsal and anteroposterior axes of the cingulate gyrus are still lacking. In the present study, morphological features and the anatomic distribution of this cell type were studied using computer-assisted mapping and immunocytochemical techniques. Spindle neurons are restricted to the subfields of the anterior cingulate cortex (Brodmann's area 24), exhibiting a greater density in anterior portions of this area than in posterior portions, and tapering off in the transition zone between anterior and posterior cingulate cortex. Furthermore, a majority of the spindle cells at any level is located in subarea 24b on the gyral surface. Immunocytochemical analysis revealed that the neurofilament protein triple was present in a large percentage of these neurons and that they did not contain calcium-binding proteins. Injections of the carbocyanine dye DiI into the cingulum bundle revealed that these cells are projection neurons. Finally, spindle cells were consistently affected in Alzheimer's disease cases, with an overall loss of about 60%. Taken together, these observations indicate that the spindle cells of the human cingulate cortex represent a morphological subpopulation of pyramidal neurons whose restricted distribution may be associated with functionally distinct areas.

  12. Transcranial static magnetic field stimulation of the human motor cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliviero, Antonio; Mordillo-Mateos, Laura; Arias, Pablo; Panyavin, Ivan; Foffani, Guglielmo; Aguilar, Juan

    2011-01-01

    Abstract The aim of the present study was to investigate in healthy humans the possibility of a non-invasive modulation of motor cortex excitability by the application of static magnetic fields through the scalp. Static magnetic fields were obtained by using cylindrical NdFeB magnets. We performed four sets of experiments. In Experiment 1, we recorded motor potentials evoked by single-pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) of the motor cortex before and after 10 min of transcranial static magnetic field stimulation (tSMS) in conscious subjects. We observed an average reduction of motor cortex excitability of up to 25%, as revealed by TMS, which lasted for several minutes after the end of tSMS, and was dose dependent (intensity of the magnetic field) but not polarity dependent. In Experiment 2, we confirmed the reduction of motor cortex excitability induced by tSMS using a double-blind sham-controlled design. In Experiment 3, we investigated the duration of tSMS that was necessary to modulate motor cortex excitability. We found that 10 min of tSMS (compared to 1 min and 5 min) were necessary to induce significant effects. In Experiment 4, we used transcranial electric stimulation (TES) to establish that the tSMS-induced reduction of motor cortex excitability was not due to corticospinal axon and/or spinal excitability, but specifically involved intracortical networks. These results suggest that tSMS using small static magnets may be a promising tool to modulate cerebral excitability in a non-invasive, painless, and reversible way. PMID:21807616

  13. Optical study of interactions among propagation waves of neural excitation in the rat somatosensory cortex evoked by forelimb and hindlimb stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hama, Noriyuki; Kawai, Minako; Ito, Shin-Ichi; Hirota, Akihiko

    2018-02-14

    Multisite optical recording has revealed that the neural excitation wave induced by a sensory stimulation begins at a focus and propagates on the cortex. This wave is considered to be important for computation in the sensory cortex, particularly the integration of sensory information; however, the nature of this wave remains largely unknown. In the present study, we examined the interaction between two waves in the rat sensory cortex induced by hindlimb and forelimb stimuli with different inter-stimulus intervals. We classified the resultant patterns as follows: 1) the collision of two waves; 2) the hindlimb response being evoked while the forelimb-induced wave is passing the hindlimb focus; and 3) the hindlimb response being evoked after the forelimb-induced wave has passed the hindlimb focus. In pattern 1, the two waves fused into a single wave, but the propagation pattern differed from that predicted by the superimposition of two solely induced propagation courses. In pattern 2, the state of the interaction between the two waves varied depending on the phase of optical signals constituting the forelimb-induced wave around the hindlimb focus. Although no hindlimb-induced wave was observed in the rising phase, the propagating velocity of the forelimb-induced wave increased. At the peak, neither the hindlimb-induced response nor a modulatory effect on the forelimb-induced wave was detected. In pattern 3, the hindlimb-induced wave showed a reduced amplitude and spatial extent. These results indicate that the state of the interaction between waves was strongly influenced by the relative timing of sensory inputs.

  14. Development of rat female genital cortex and control of female puberty by sexual touch.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Constanze Lenschow

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Rat somatosensory cortex contains a large sexually monomorphic genital representation. Genital cortex undergoes an unusual 2-fold expansion during puberty. Here, we investigate genital cortex development and female rat sexual maturation. Ovariectomies and estradiol injections suggested sex hormones cause the pubertal genital cortex expansion but not its maintenance at adult size. Genital cortex expanded by thalamic afferents invading surrounding dysgranular cortex. Genital touch was a dominant factor driving female sexual maturation. Raising female rats in contact with adult males promoted genital cortex expansion, whereas contact to adult females or nontactile (audio-visual-olfactory male cues did not. Genital touch imposed by human experimenters powerfully advanced female genital cortex development and sexual maturation. Long-term blocking of genital cortex by tetrodotoxin in pubescent females housed with males prevented genital cortex expansion and decelerated vaginal opening. Sex hormones, sexual experience, and neural activity shape genital cortex, which contributes to the puberty promoting effects of sexual touch.

  15. Development of rat female genital cortex and control of female puberty by sexual touch.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lenschow, Constanze; Sigl-Glöckner, Johanna; Brecht, Michael

    2017-09-01

    Rat somatosensory cortex contains a large sexually monomorphic genital representation. Genital cortex undergoes an unusual 2-fold expansion during puberty. Here, we investigate genital cortex development and female rat sexual maturation. Ovariectomies and estradiol injections suggested sex hormones cause the pubertal genital cortex expansion but not its maintenance at adult size. Genital cortex expanded by thalamic afferents invading surrounding dysgranular cortex. Genital touch was a dominant factor driving female sexual maturation. Raising female rats in contact with adult males promoted genital cortex expansion, whereas contact to adult females or nontactile (audio-visual-olfactory) male cues did not. Genital touch imposed by human experimenters powerfully advanced female genital cortex development and sexual maturation. Long-term blocking of genital cortex by tetrodotoxin in pubescent females housed with males prevented genital cortex expansion and decelerated vaginal opening. Sex hormones, sexual experience, and neural activity shape genital cortex, which contributes to the puberty promoting effects of sexual touch.

  16. Noninvasive studies of human visual cortex using neuromagnetic techniques

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Aine, C.J.; George, J.S.; Supek, S.; Maclin, E.L.

    1990-01-01

    The major goals of noninvasive studies of the human visual cortex are: to increase knowledge of the functional organization of cortical visual pathways; and to develop noninvasive clinical tests for the assessment of cortical function. Noninvasive techniques suitable for studies of the structure and function of human visual cortex include magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), positron emission tomography (PET), single photon emission tomography (SPECT), scalp recorded event-related potentials (ERPs), and event-related magnetic fields (ERFs). The primary challenge faced by noninvasive functional measures is to optimize the spatial and temporal resolution of the measurement and analytic techniques in order to effectively characterize the spatial and temporal variations in patterns of neuronal activity. In this paper we review the use of neuromagnetic techniques for this purpose. 8 refs., 3 figs

  17. Functional sex differences in human primary auditory cortex

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ruytjens, Liesbet; Georgiadis, Janniko R.; Holstege, Gert; Wit, Hero P.; Albers, Frans W.J.; Willemsen, Antoon T.M.

    2007-01-01

    We used PET to study cortical activation during auditory stimulation and found sex differences in the human primary auditory cortex (PAC). Regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) was measured in 10 male and 10 female volunteers while listening to sounds (music or white noise) and during a baseline (no auditory stimulation). We found a sex difference in activation of the left and right PAC when comparing music to noise. The PAC was more activated by music than by noise in both men and women. But this difference between the two stimuli was significantly higher in men than in women. To investigate whether this difference could be attributed to either music or noise, we compared both stimuli with the baseline and revealed that noise gave a significantly higher activation in the female PAC than in the male PAC. Moreover, the male group showed a deactivation in the right prefrontal cortex when comparing noise to the baseline, which was not present in the female group. Interestingly, the auditory and prefrontal regions are anatomically and functionally linked and the prefrontal cortex is known to be engaged in auditory tasks that involve sustained or selective auditory attention. Thus we hypothesize that differences in attention result in a different deactivation of the right prefrontal cortex, which in turn modulates the activation of the PAC and thus explains the sex differences found in the activation of the PAC. Our results suggest that sex is an important factor in auditory brain studies. (orig.)

  18. Functional sex differences in human primary auditory cortex

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ruytjens, Liesbet [University Medical Center Groningen, Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Groningen (Netherlands); University Medical Center Utrecht, Department Otorhinolaryngology, P.O. Box 85500, Utrecht (Netherlands); Georgiadis, Janniko R. [University of Groningen, University Medical Center Groningen, Department of Anatomy and Embryology, Groningen (Netherlands); Holstege, Gert [University of Groningen, University Medical Center Groningen, Center for Uroneurology, Groningen (Netherlands); Wit, Hero P. [University Medical Center Groningen, Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Groningen (Netherlands); Albers, Frans W.J. [University Medical Center Utrecht, Department Otorhinolaryngology, P.O. Box 85500, Utrecht (Netherlands); Willemsen, Antoon T.M. [University Medical Center Groningen, Department of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging, Groningen (Netherlands)

    2007-12-15

    We used PET to study cortical activation during auditory stimulation and found sex differences in the human primary auditory cortex (PAC). Regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) was measured in 10 male and 10 female volunteers while listening to sounds (music or white noise) and during a baseline (no auditory stimulation). We found a sex difference in activation of the left and right PAC when comparing music to noise. The PAC was more activated by music than by noise in both men and women. But this difference between the two stimuli was significantly higher in men than in women. To investigate whether this difference could be attributed to either music or noise, we compared both stimuli with the baseline and revealed that noise gave a significantly higher activation in the female PAC than in the male PAC. Moreover, the male group showed a deactivation in the right prefrontal cortex when comparing noise to the baseline, which was not present in the female group. Interestingly, the auditory and prefrontal regions are anatomically and functionally linked and the prefrontal cortex is known to be engaged in auditory tasks that involve sustained or selective auditory attention. Thus we hypothesize that differences in attention result in a different deactivation of the right prefrontal cortex, which in turn modulates the activation of the PAC and thus explains the sex differences found in the activation of the PAC. Our results suggest that sex is an important factor in auditory brain studies. (orig.)

  19. Cortico-Cortical Receptive Field Estimates in Human Visual Cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Koen V Haak

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Human visual cortex comprises many visual areas that contain a map of the visual field (Wandell et al 2007, Neuron 56, 366–383. These visual field maps can be identified readily in individual subjects with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI during experimental sessions that last less than an hour (Wandell and Winawer 2011, Vis Res 718–737. Hence, visual field mapping with fMRI has been, and still is, a heavily used technique to examine the organisation of both normal and abnormal human visual cortex (Haak et al 2011, ACNR, 11(3, 20–21. However, visual field mapping cannot reveal every aspect of human visual cortex organisation. For example, the information processed within a visual field map arrives from somewhere and is sent to somewhere, and visual field mapping does not derive these input/output relationships. Here, we describe a new, model-based analysis for estimating the dependence between signals in distinct cortical regions using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI data. Just as a stimulus-referred receptive field predicts the neural response as a function of the stimulus contrast, the neural-referred receptive field predicts the neural response as a function of responses elsewhere in the nervous system. When applied to two cortical regions, this function can be called the cortico-cortical receptive field (CCRF. We model the CCRF as a Gaussian-weighted region on the cortical surface and apply the model to data from both stimulus-driven and resting-state experimental conditions in visual cortex.

  20. A Model of Representational Spaces in Human Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guntupalli, J Swaroop; Hanke, Michael; Halchenko, Yaroslav O; Connolly, Andrew C; Ramadge, Peter J; Haxby, James V

    2016-06-01

    Current models of the functional architecture of human cortex emphasize areas that capture coarse-scale features of cortical topography but provide no account for population responses that encode information in fine-scale patterns of activity. Here, we present a linear model of shared representational spaces in human cortex that captures fine-scale distinctions among population responses with response-tuning basis functions that are common across brains and models cortical patterns of neural responses with individual-specific topographic basis functions. We derive a common model space for the whole cortex using a new algorithm, searchlight hyperalignment, and complex, dynamic stimuli that provide a broad sampling of visual, auditory, and social percepts. The model aligns representations across brains in occipital, temporal, parietal, and prefrontal cortices, as shown by between-subject multivariate pattern classification and intersubject correlation of representational geometry, indicating that structural principles for shared neural representations apply across widely divergent domains of information. The model provides a rigorous account for individual variability of well-known coarse-scale topographies, such as retinotopy and category selectivity, and goes further to account for fine-scale patterns that are multiplexed with coarse-scale topographies and carry finer distinctions. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press.

  1. Influence of dopaminergically mediated reward on somatosensory decision-making.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Burkhard Pleger

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available Reward-related dopaminergic influences on learning and overt behaviour are well established, but any influence on sensory decision-making is largely unknown. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI while participants judged electric somatosensory stimuli on one hand or other, before being rewarded for correct performance at trial end via a visual signal, at one of four anticipated financial levels. Prior to the procedure, participants received either placebo (saline, a dopamine agonist (levodopa, or an antagonist (haloperidol.higher anticipated reward improved tactile decisions. Visually signalled reward reactivated primary somatosensory cortex for the judged hand, more strongly for higher reward. After receiving a higher reward on one trial, somatosensory activations and decisions were enhanced on the next trial. These behavioural and neural effects were all enhanced by levodopa and attenuated by haloperidol, indicating dopaminergic dependency. Dopaminergic reward-related influences extend even to early somatosensory cortex and sensory decision-making.

  2. The development of human visual cortex and clinical implications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Siu CR

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Caitlin R Siu,1 Kathryn M Murphy1,2 1McMaster Integrative Neuroscience Discovery and Study (MiNDS Program, McMaster University, Hamilton, ON, Canada; 2Department of Psychology, Neuroscience & Behaviour, McMaster University, Hamilton, ON, Canada Abstract: The primary visual cortex (V1 is the first cortical area that processes visual information. Normal development of V1 depends on binocular vision during the critical period, and age-related losses of vision are linked with neurobiological changes in V1. Animal studies have provided important details about the neurobiological mechanisms in V1 that support normal vision or are changed by visual diseases. There is very little information, however, about those neurobiological mechanisms in human V1. That lack of information has hampered the translation of biologically inspired treatments from preclinical models to effective clinical treatments. We have studied human V1 to characterize the expression of neurobiological mechanisms that regulate visual perception and neuroplasticity. We have identified five stages of development for human V1 that start in infancy and continue across the life span. Here, we describe these stages, compare them with visual and anatomical milestones, and discuss implications for translating treatments for visual disorders that depend on neuroplasticity of V1 function. Keywords: development, human visual cortex, amblyopia, synaptic plasticity, glutamatergic, GABAergic, receptors

  3. Visual attentional load influences plasticity in the human motor cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kamke, Marc R; Hall, Michelle G; Lye, Hayley F; Sale, Martin V; Fenlon, Laura R; Carroll, Timothy J; Riek, Stephan; Mattingley, Jason B

    2012-05-16

    Neural plasticity plays a critical role in learning, memory, and recovery from injury to the nervous system. Although much is known about the physical and physiological determinants of plasticity, little is known about the influence of cognitive factors. In this study, we investigated whether selective attention plays a role in modifying changes in neural excitability reflecting long-term potentiation (LTP)-like plasticity. We induced LTP-like effects in the hand area of the human motor cortex using transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). During the induction of plasticity, participants engaged in a visual detection task with either low or high attentional demands. Changes in neural excitability were assessed by measuring motor-evoked potentials in a small hand muscle before and after the TMS procedures. In separate experiments plasticity was induced either by paired associative stimulation (PAS) or intermittent theta-burst stimulation (iTBS). Because these procedures induce different forms of LTP-like effects, they allowed us to investigate the generality of any attentional influence on plasticity. In both experiments reliable changes in motor cortex excitability were evident under low-load conditions, but this effect was eliminated under high-attentional load. In a third experiment we investigated whether the attentional task was associated with ongoing changes in the excitability of motor cortex, but found no difference in evoked potentials across the levels of attentional load. Our findings indicate that in addition to their role in modifying sensory processing, mechanisms of attention can also be a potent modulator of cortical plasticity.

  4. Triglycerides in the Human Kidney Cortex: Relationship with Body Size

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bobulescu, Ion Alexandru; Lotan, Yair; Zhang, Jianning; Rosenthal, Tara R.; Rogers, John T.; Adams-Huet, Beverley; Sakhaee, Khashayar; Moe, Orson W.

    2014-01-01

    Obesity is associated with increased risk for kidney disease and uric acid nephrolithiasis, but the pathophysiological mechanisms underpinning these associations are incompletely understood. Animal experiments have suggested that renal lipid accumulation and lipotoxicity may play a role, but whether lipid accumulation occurs in humans with increasing body mass index (BMI) is unknown. The association between obesity and abnormal triglyceride accumulation in non-adipose tissues (steatosis) has been described in the liver, heart, skeletal muscle and pancreas, but not in the human kidney. We used a quantitative biochemical assay to quantify triglyceride in normal kidney cortex samples from 54 patients undergoing nephrectomy for localized renal cell carcinoma. In subsets of the study population we evaluated the localization of lipid droplets by Oil Red O staining and measured 16 common ceramide species by mass spectrometry. There was a positive correlation between kidney cortex trigyceride content and BMI (Spearman R = 0.27, P = 0.04). Lipid droplets detectable by optical microscopy had a sporadic distribution but were generally more prevalent in individuals with higher BMI, with predominant localization in proximal tubule cells and to a lesser extent in glomeruli. Total ceramide content was inversely correlated with triglycerides. We postulate that obesity is associated with abnormal triglyceride accumulation (steatosis) in the human kidney. In turn, steatosis and lipotoxicity may contribute to the pathogenesis of obesity-associated kidney disease and nephrolithiasis. PMID:25170827

  5. Altered Cross-Modal Processing in the Primary Auditory Cortex of Congenitally Deaf Adults: A Visual-Somatosensory fMRI Study with a Double-Flash Illusion

    OpenAIRE

    Karns, Christina M.; Dow, Mark W.; Neville, Helen J.

    2012-01-01

    The developing brain responds to the environment by using statistical correlations in input to guide functional and structural changes—that is, the brain displays neuroplasticity. Experience shapes brain development throughout life, but neuroplasticity is variable from one brain system to another. How does the early loss of a sensory modality affect this complex process? We examined cross-modal neuroplasticity in anatomically defined subregions of Heschl's gyrus, the site of human primary aud...

  6. Cerebral Microcirculation and Oxygen Tension in the Human Secondary Cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linninger, A. A.; Gould, I. G.; Marinnan, T.; Hsu, C.-Y.; Chojecki, M.; Alaraj, A.

    2013-01-01

    The three-dimensional spatial arrangement of the cortical microcirculatory system is critical for understanding oxygen exchange between blood vessels and brain cells. A three-dimensional computer model of a 3 × 3 × 3 mm3 subsection of the human secondary cortex was constructed to quantify oxygen advection in the microcirculation, tissue oxygen perfusion, and consumption in the human cortex. This computer model accounts for all arterial, capillary and venous blood vessels of the cerebral microvascular bed as well as brain tissue occupying the extravascular space. Microvessels were assembled with optimization algorithms emulating angiogenic growth; a realistic capillary bed was built with space filling procedures. The extravascular tissue was modeled as a porous medium supplied with oxygen by advection–diffusion to match normal metabolic oxygen demand. The resulting synthetic computer generated network matches prior measured morphometrics and fractal patterns of the cortical microvasculature. This morphologically accurate, physiologically consistent, multi-scale computer network of the cerebral microcirculation predicts the oxygen exchange of cortical blood vessels with the surrounding gray matter. Oxygen tension subject to blood pressure and flow conditions were computed and validated for the blood as well as brain tissue. Oxygen gradients along arterioles, capillaries and veins agreed with in vivo trends observed recently in imaging studies within experimental tolerances and uncertainty. PMID:23842693

  7. Subliminal stimulation and somatosensory signal detection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferrè, Elisa Raffaella; Sahani, Maneesh; Haggard, Patrick

    2016-10-01

    Only a small fraction of sensory signals is consciously perceived. The brain's perceptual systems may include mechanisms of feedforward inhibition that protect the cortex from subliminal noise, thus reserving cortical capacity and conscious awareness for significant stimuli. Here we provide a new view of these mechanisms based on signal detection theory, and gain control. We demonstrated that subliminal somatosensory stimulation decreased sensitivity for the detection of a subsequent somatosensory input, largely due to increased false alarm rates. By delivering the subliminal somatosensory stimulus and the to-be-detected somatosensory stimulus to different digits of the same hand, we show that this effect spreads across the sensory surface. In addition, subliminal somatosensory stimulation tended to produce an increased probability of responding "yes", whether the somatosensory stimulus was present or not. Our results suggest that subliminal stimuli temporarily reduce input gain, avoiding excessive responses to further small inputs. This gain control may be automatic, and may precede discriminative classification of inputs into signals or noise. Crucially, we found that subliminal inputs influenced false alarm rates only on blocks where the to-be-detected stimuli were present, and not on pre-test control blocks where they were absent. Participants appeared to adjust their perceptual criterion according to a statistical distribution of stimuli in the current context, with the presence of supraliminal stimuli having an important role in the criterion-setting process. These findings clarify the cognitive mechanisms that reserve conscious perception for salient and important signals. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Segregation of the human medial prefrontal cortex in social cognition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Danilo eBzdok

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available While the human medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC is widely believed to be a key node of neural networks relevant for socio-emotional processing, its functional subspecialization is still poorly understood. We thus revisited the often assumed differentiation of the mPFC in social cognition along its ventral-dorsal axis. Our neuroinformatic analysis was based on a neuroimaging meta-analysis of perspective-taking that yielded two separate clusters in the ventral and dorsal mPFC, respectively. We determined each seed region’s brain-wide interaction pattern by two complementary measures of functional connectivity: co-activation across a wide range of neuroimaging studies archived in the BrainMap database and correlated signal fluctuations during unconstrained (resting cognition. Furthermore, we characterized the functions associated with these two regions using the BrainMap database. Across methods, the ventral mPFC was more strongly connected with the nucleus accumbens, hippocampus, posterior cingulate cortex, and retrosplenial cortex, while the dorsal mPFC was more strongly connected with the inferior frontal gyrus, temporo-parietal junction, and middle temporal gyrus. Further, the ventral mPFC was selectively associated with action execution, olfaction, and reward related tasks, while the dorsal mPFC was selectively associated with perspective-taking and episodic memory retrieval. The ventral mPFC is therefore predominantly involved in sensory-driven, approach/avoidance-modulating, and evaluation-related processing, whereas the dorsal mPFC is predominantly involved in internally driven, memory-informed, and metacognition-related processing in social cognition.

  9. Characterizing synaptic protein development in human visual cortex enables alignment of synaptic age with rat visual cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinto, Joshua G. A.; Jones, David G.; Williams, C. Kate; Murphy, Kathryn M.

    2015-01-01

    Although many potential neuroplasticity based therapies have been developed in the lab, few have translated into established clinical treatments for human neurologic or neuropsychiatric diseases. Animal models, especially of the visual system, have shaped our understanding of neuroplasticity by characterizing the mechanisms that promote neural changes and defining timing of the sensitive period. The lack of knowledge about development of synaptic plasticity mechanisms in human cortex, and about alignment of synaptic age between animals and humans, has limited translation of neuroplasticity therapies. In this study, we quantified expression of a set of highly conserved pre- and post-synaptic proteins (Synapsin, Synaptophysin, PSD-95, Gephyrin) and found that synaptic development in human primary visual cortex (V1) continues into late childhood. Indeed, this is many years longer than suggested by neuroanatomical studies and points to a prolonged sensitive period for plasticity in human sensory cortex. In addition, during childhood we found waves of inter-individual variability that are different for the four proteins and include a stage during early development (visual cortex and identified a simple linear equation that provides robust alignment of synaptic age between humans and rats. Alignment of synaptic ages is important for age-appropriate targeting and effective translation of neuroplasticity therapies from the lab to the clinic. PMID:25729353

  10. Optical coherence tomography visualizes neurons in human entorhinal cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Magnain, Caroline; Augustinack, Jean C.; Konukoglu, Ender; Frosch, Matthew P.; Sakadžić, Sava; Varjabedian, Ani; Garcia, Nathalie; Wedeen, Van J.; Boas, David A.; Fischl, Bruce

    2015-01-01

    Abstract. The cytoarchitecture of the human brain is of great interest in diverse fields: neuroanatomy, neurology, neuroscience, and neuropathology. Traditional histology is a method that has been historically used to assess cell and fiber content in the ex vivo human brain. However, this technique suffers from significant distortions. We used a previously demonstrated optical coherence microscopy technique to image individual neurons in several square millimeters of en-face tissue blocks from layer II of the human entorhinal cortex, over 50  μm in depth. The same slices were then sectioned and stained for Nissl substance. We registered the optical coherence tomography (OCT) images with the corresponding Nissl stained slices using a nonlinear transformation. The neurons were then segmented in both images and we quantified the overlap. We show that OCT images contain information about neurons that is comparable to what can be obtained from Nissl staining, and thus can be used to assess the cytoarchitecture of the ex vivo human brain with minimal distortion. With the future integration of a vibratome into the OCT imaging rig, this technique can be scaled up to obtain undistorted volumetric data of centimeter cube tissue blocks in the near term, and entire human hemispheres in the future. PMID:25741528

  11. Voxel-based lesion-symptom mapping of stroke lesions underlying somatosensory deficits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, Sarah; Kessner, Simon S; Cheng, Bastian; Bönstrup, Marlene; Schulz, Robert; Hummel, Friedhelm C; De Bruyn, Nele; Peeters, Andre; Van Pesch, Vincent; Duprez, Thierry; Sunaert, Stefan; Schrooten, Maarten; Feys, Hilde; Gerloff, Christian; Thomalla, Götz; Thijs, Vincent; Verheyden, Geert

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between stroke lesion location and the resulting somatosensory deficit. We studied exteroceptive and proprioceptive somatosensory symptoms and stroke lesions in 38 patients with first-ever acute stroke. The Erasmus modified Nottingham Sensory Assessment was used to clinically evaluate somatosensory functioning in the arm and hand within the first week after stroke onset. Additionally, more objective measures such as the perceptual threshold of touch and somatosensory evoked potentials were recorded. Non-parametric voxel-based lesion-symptom mapping was performed to investigate lesion contribution to different somatosensory deficits in the upper limb. Additionally, structural connectivity of brain areas that demonstrated the strongest association with somatosensory symptoms was determined, using probabilistic fiber tracking based on diffusion tensor imaging data from a healthy age-matched sample. Voxels with a significant association to somatosensory deficits were clustered in two core brain regions: the central parietal white matter, also referred to as the sensory component of the superior thalamic radiation, and the parietal operculum close to the insular cortex, representing the secondary somatosensory cortex. Our objective recordings confirmed findings from clinical assessments. Probabilistic tracking connected the first region to thalamus, internal capsule, brain stem, postcentral gyrus, cerebellum, and frontal pathways, while the second region demonstrated structural connections to thalamus, insular and primary somatosensory cortex. This study reveals that stroke lesions in the sensory fibers of the superior thalamocortical radiation and the parietal operculum are significantly associated with multiple exteroceptive and proprioceptive deficits in the arm and hand.

  12. Cerebral cortex modulation of pain

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Yu-feng XIE; Fu-quan HUO; Jing-shi TANG

    2009-01-01

    Pain is a complex experience encompassing sensory-discriminative, affective-motivational and cognitiv e-emotional com-ponents mediated by different mechanisms. Contrary to the traditional view that the cerebral cortex is not involved in pain perception, an extensive cortical network associated with pain processing has been revealed using multiple methods over the past decades. This network consistently includes, at least, the anterior cingulate cortex, the agranular insular cortex, the primary (SⅠ) and secondary somatosensory (SⅡ) cortices, the ventrolateral orbital cortex and the motor cortex. These corti-cal structures constitute the medial and lateral pain systems, the nucleus submedius-ventrolateral orbital cortex-periaque-ductal gray system and motor cortex system, respectively. Multiple neurotransmitters, including opioid, glutamate, GABA and dopamine, are involved in the modulation of pain by these cortical structures. In addition, glial cells may also be in-volved in cortical modulation of pain and serve as one target for pain management research. This review discusses recent studies of pain modulation by these cerebral cortical structures in animals and human.

  13. Activation of the insular cortex during dynamic exercise in humans

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Williamson, James; Nobrega, A C; McColl, R

    1997-01-01

    role as a site for regulation of autonomic activity. 2. Eight subjects were studied during voluntary active cycling and passively induced cycling. Additionally, four of the subjects underwent passive movement combined with electrical stimulation of the legs. 3. Increases in regional cerebral blood flow...... during active, but not passive cycling. There were no significant changes in rCBF for the right insula. Also, the magnitude of rCBF increase for leg primary motor areas was significantly greater for both active cycling and passive cycling combined with electrical stimulation compared with passive cycling...... alone. 5. These findings provide the first evidence of insular activation during dynamic exercise in humans, suggesting that the left insular cortex may serve as a site for cortical regulation of cardiac autonomic (parasympathetic) activity. Additionally, findings during passive cycling with electrical...

  14. Adrenergic receptors in frontal cortex in human brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cash, R; Raisman, R; Ruberg, M; Agid, Y

    1985-02-05

    The binding of three adrenergic ligands ([3H]prazosin, [3H]clonidine, [3H]dihydroalprenolol) was studied in the frontal cortex of human brain. alpha 1-Receptors, labeled by [3H]prazosin, predominated. [3H]Clonidine bound to two classes of sites, one of high affinity and one of low affinity. Guanosine triphosphate appeared to lower the affinity of [3H]clonidine for its receptor. [3H]Dihydroalprenolol bound to three classes of sites: the beta 1-receptor, the beta 2-receptor and a receptor with low affinity which represented about 40% of the total binding, but which was probably a non-specific site; the beta 1/beta 2 ratio was 1/2.

  15. Representation of visual gravitational motion in the human vestibular cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Indovina, Iole; Maffei, Vincenzo; Bosco, Gianfranco; Zago, Myrka; Macaluso, Emiliano; Lacquaniti, Francesco

    2005-04-15

    How do we perceive the visual motion of objects that are accelerated by gravity? We propose that, because vision is poorly sensitive to accelerations, an internal model that calculates the effects of gravity is derived from graviceptive information, is stored in the vestibular cortex, and is activated by visual motion that appears to be coherent with natural gravity. The acceleration of visual targets was manipulated while brain activity was measured using functional magnetic resonance imaging. In agreement with the internal model hypothesis, we found that the vestibular network was selectively engaged when acceleration was consistent with natural gravity. These findings demonstrate that predictive mechanisms of physical laws of motion are represented in the human brain.

  16. Intrinsic frequency biases and profiles across human cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mellem, Monika S; Wohltjen, Sophie; Gotts, Stephen J; Ghuman, Avniel Singh; Martin, Alex

    2017-11-01

    Recent findings in monkeys suggest that intrinsic periodic spiking activity in selective cortical areas occurs at timescales that follow a sensory or lower order-to-higher order processing hierarchy (Murray JD, Bernacchia A, Freedman DJ, Romo R, Wallis JD, Cai X, Padoa-Schioppa C, Pasternak T, Seo H, Lee D, Wang XJ. Nat Neurosci 17: 1661-1663, 2014). It has not yet been fully explored if a similar timescale hierarchy is present in humans. Additionally, these measures in the monkey studies have not addressed findings that rhythmic activity within a brain area can occur at multiple frequencies. In this study we investigate in humans if regions may be biased toward particular frequencies of intrinsic activity and if a full cortical mapping still reveals an organization that follows this hierarchy. We examined the spectral power in multiple frequency bands (0.5-150 Hz) from task-independent data using magnetoencephalography (MEG). We compared standardized power across bands to find regional frequency biases. Our results demonstrate a mix of lower and higher frequency biases across sensory and higher order regions. Thus they suggest a more complex cortical organization that does not simply follow this hierarchy. Additionally, some regions do not display a bias for a single band, and a data-driven clustering analysis reveals a regional organization with high standardized power in multiple bands. Specifically, theta and beta are both high in dorsal frontal cortex, whereas delta and gamma are high in ventral frontal cortex and temporal cortex. Occipital and parietal regions are biased more narrowly toward alpha power, and ventral temporal lobe displays specific biases toward gamma. Thus intrinsic rhythmic neural activity displays a regional organization but one that is not necessarily hierarchical. NEW & NOTEWORTHY The organization of rhythmic neural activity is not well understood. Whereas it has been postulated that rhythms are organized in a hierarchical manner across

  17. Exon microarray analysis of human dorsolateral prefrontal cortex in alcoholism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manzardo, Ann M; Gunewardena, Sumedha; Wang, Kun; Butler, Merlin G

    2014-06-01

    Alcohol abuse is associated with cellular and biochemical disturbances that impact upon protein and nucleic acid synthesis, brain development, function, and behavioral responses. To further characterize the genetic influences in alcoholism and the effects of alcohol consumption on gene expression, we used a highly sensitive exon microarray to examine mRNA expression in human frontal cortex of alcoholics and control males. Messenger RNA was isolated from the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (dlPFC; Brodmann area 9) of 7 adult alcoholic (6 males, 1 female, mean age 49 years) and 7 matched controls. Affymetrix Human Exon 1.0 ST array was performed according to standard procedures and the results analyzed at the gene level. Microarray findings were validated using quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction, and the ontology of disturbed genes characterized using Ingenuity Pathway Analysis (IPA). Decreased mRNA expression was observed for genes involved in cellular adhesion (e.g., CTNNA3, ITGA2), transport (e.g., TF, ABCA8), nervous system development (e.g., LRP2, UGT8, GLDN), and signaling (e.g., RASGRP3, LGR5) with influence over lipid and myelin synthesis (e.g., ASPA, ENPP2, KLK6). IPA identified disturbances in network functions associated with neurological disease and development including cellular assembly and organization impacting on psychological disorders. Our data in alcoholism support a reduction in expression of dlPFC mRNA for genes involved with neuronal growth, differentiation, and signaling that targets white matter of the brain. Copyright © 2014 by the Research Society on Alcoholism.

  18. Functional organization and visual representations in human ventral lateral prefrontal cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Annie Wai Yiu Chan

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Recent neuroimaging studies in both human and non-human primates have identified face selective activation in the ventral lateral prefrontal cortex even in the absence of working memory demands. Further, research has suggested that this face-selective response is largely driven by the presence of the eyes. However, the nature and origin of visual category responses in the ventral lateral prefrontal cortex remain unclear. Further, in a broader sense, how do these findings relate to our current understandings of lateral prefrontal cortex? What do these findings tell us about the underlying function and organization principles of the ventral lateral prefrontal cortex? What is the future direction for investigating visual representations in this cortex? This review focuses on the function, topography, and circuitry of the ventral lateral prefrontal cortex to enhance our understanding of the evolution and development of this cortex.

  19. Medial frontal cortex and response conflict: Evidence from human intracranial EEG and medial frontal cortex lesion

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cohen, M.X.; Ridderinkhof, K.R.; Haupt, S.; Elger, C.E.; Fell, J.

    2008-01-01

    The medial frontal cortex (MFC) has been implicated in the monitoring and selection of actions in the face of competing alternatives, but much remains unknown about its functional properties, including electrophysiological oscillations, during response conflict tasks. Here, we recorded intracranial

  20. A cognitive neuroprosthetic that uses cortical stimulation for somatosensory feedback

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klaes, Christian; Shi, Ying; Kellis, Spencer; Minxha, Juri; Revechkis, Boris; Andersen, Richard A.

    2014-10-01

    Objective. Present day cortical brain-machine interfaces (BMIs) have made impressive advances using decoded brain signals to control extracorporeal devices. Although BMIs are used in a closed-loop fashion, sensory feedback typically is visual only. However medical case studies have shown that the loss of somesthesis in a limb greatly reduces the agility of the limb even when visual feedback is available. Approach. To overcome this limitation, this study tested a closed-loop BMI that utilizes intracortical microstimulation to provide ‘tactile’ sensation to a non-human primate. Main result. Using stimulation electrodes in Brodmann area 1 of somatosensory cortex (BA1) and recording electrodes in the anterior intraparietal area, the parietal reach region and dorsal area 5 (area 5d), it was found that this form of feedback can be used in BMI tasks. Significance. Providing somatosensory feedback has the poyential to greatly improve the performance of cognitive neuroprostheses especially for fine control and object manipulation. Adding stimulation to a BMI system could therefore improve the quality of life for severely paralyzed patients.

  1. Hierarchy of transcriptomic specialization across human cortex captured by myelin map topography

    OpenAIRE

    Murray, John; Martin, William; Bernacchia, Alberto; Anticevic, Alan; Ji, Jie; Navejar, Natasha; Eckner, William; Demirtas, Murat; Burt, Joshua

    2017-01-01

    Hierarchy provides a unifying principle for the macroscale organization of anatomical and functional properties across primate cortex, yet the microscale bases of hierarchical specialization across human cortex are poorly understood. Anatomical hierarchy is conventionally informed by invasively measured laminar patterns of long-range cortico-cortical projections, creating the need for a principled proxy measure of hierarchy in humans. Moreover, cortex exhibits a transcriptional architecture c...

  2. Encoding model of temporal processing in human visual cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stigliani, Anthony; Jeska, Brianna; Grill-Spector, Kalanit

    2017-12-19

    How is temporal information processed in human visual cortex? Visual input is relayed to V1 through segregated transient and sustained channels in the retina and lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN). However, there is intense debate as to how sustained and transient temporal channels contribute to visual processing beyond V1. The prevailing view associates transient processing predominately with motion-sensitive regions and sustained processing with ventral stream regions, while the opposing view suggests that both temporal channels contribute to neural processing beyond V1. Using fMRI, we measured cortical responses to time-varying stimuli and then implemented a two temporal channel-encoding model to evaluate the contributions of each channel. Different from the general linear model of fMRI that predicts responses directly from the stimulus, the encoding approach first models neural responses to the stimulus from which fMRI responses are derived. This encoding approach not only predicts cortical responses to time-varying stimuli from milliseconds to seconds but also, reveals differential contributions of temporal channels across visual cortex. Consistent with the prevailing view, motion-sensitive regions and adjacent lateral occipitotemporal regions are dominated by transient responses. However, ventral occipitotemporal regions are driven by both sustained and transient channels, with transient responses exceeding the sustained. These findings propose a rethinking of temporal processing in the ventral stream and suggest that transient processing may contribute to rapid extraction of the content of the visual input. Importantly, our encoding approach has vast implications, because it can be applied with fMRI to decipher neural computations in millisecond resolution in any part of the brain. Copyright © 2017 the Author(s). Published by PNAS.

  3. Characterizing synaptic protein development in human visual cortex enables alignment of synaptic age with rat visual cortex

    OpenAIRE

    Pinto, Joshua G. A.; Jones, David G.; Williams, C. Kate; Murphy, Kathryn M.

    2015-01-01

    Although many potential neuroplasticity based therapies have been developed in the lab, few have translated into established clinical treatments for human neurologic or neuropsychiatric diseases. Animal models, especially of the visual system, have shaped our understanding of neuroplasticity by characterizing the mechanisms that promote neural changes and defining timing of the sensitive period. The lack of knowledge about development of synaptic plasticity mechanisms in human cortex, and abo...

  4. Characterizing synaptic protein development in human visual cortex enables alignment of synaptic age with rat visual cortex

    OpenAIRE

    Joshua G.A Pinto; David G Jones; Kate eWilliams; Kathryn M Murphy; Kathryn M Murphy

    2015-01-01

    Although many potential neuroplasticity based therapies have been developed in the lab, few have translated into established clinical treatments for human neurologic or neuropsychiatric diseases. Animal models, especially of the visual system, have shaped our understanding of neuroplasticity by characterizing the mechanisms that promote neural changes and defining timing of the sensitive period. The lack of knowledge about development of synaptic plasticity mechanisms in human cortex, and a...

  5. Transcranial focused ultrasound stimulation of human primary visual cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Wonhye; Kim, Hyun-Chul; Jung, Yujin; Chung, Yong An; Song, In-Uk; Lee, Jong-Hwan; Yoo, Seung-Schik

    2016-09-01

    Transcranial focused ultrasound (FUS) is making progress as a new non-invasive mode of regional brain stimulation. Current evidence of FUS-mediated neurostimulation for humans has been limited to the observation of subjective sensory manifestations and electrophysiological responses, thus warranting the identification of stimulated brain regions. Here, we report FUS sonication of the primary visual cortex (V1) in humans, resulting in elicited activation not only from the sonicated brain area, but also from the network of regions involved in visual and higher-order cognitive processes (as revealed by simultaneous acquisition of blood-oxygenation-level-dependent functional magnetic resonance imaging). Accompanying phosphene perception was also reported. The electroencephalo graphic (EEG) responses showed distinct peaks associated with the stimulation. None of the participants showed any adverse effects from the sonication based on neuroimaging and neurological examinations. Retrospective numerical simulation of the acoustic profile showed the presence of individual variability in terms of the location and intensity of the acoustic focus. With exquisite spatial selectivity and capability for depth penetration, FUS may confer a unique utility in providing non-invasive stimulation of region-specific brain circuits for neuroscientific and therapeutic applications.

  6. Aversive learning shapes neuronal orientation tuning in human visual cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McTeague, Lisa M; Gruss, L Forest; Keil, Andreas

    2015-07-28

    The responses of sensory cortical neurons are shaped by experience. As a result perceptual biases evolve, selectively facilitating the detection and identification of sensory events that are relevant for adaptive behaviour. Here we examine the involvement of human visual cortex in the formation of learned perceptual biases. We use classical aversive conditioning to associate one out of a series of oriented gratings with a noxious sound stimulus. After as few as two grating-sound pairings, visual cortical responses to the sound-paired grating show selective amplification. Furthermore, as learning progresses, responses to the orientations with greatest similarity to the sound-paired grating are increasingly suppressed, suggesting inhibitory interactions between orientation-selective neuronal populations. Changes in cortical connectivity between occipital and fronto-temporal regions mirror the changes in visuo-cortical response amplitudes. These findings suggest that short-term behaviourally driven retuning of human visual cortical neurons involves distal top-down projections as well as local inhibitory interactions.

  7. Characterizing synaptic protein development in human visual cortex enables alignment of synaptic age with rat visual cortex

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    Joshua G.A Pinto

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Although many potential neuroplasticity based therapies have been developed in the lab, few have translated into established clinical treatments for human neurologic or neuropsychiatric diseases. Animal models, especially of the visual system, have shaped our understanding of neuroplasticity by characterizing the mechanisms that promote neural changes and defining timing of the sensitive period. The lack of knowledge about development of synaptic plasticity mechanisms in human cortex, and about alignment of synaptic age between animals and humans, has limited translation of neuroplasticity therapies. In this study, we quantified expression of a set of highly conserved pre- and post-synaptic proteins (Synapsin, Synaptophysin, PSD-95, Gephyrin and found that synaptic development in human primary visual cortex continues into late childhood. Indeed, this is many years longer than suggested by neuroanatomical studies and points to a prolonged sensitive period for plasticity in human sensory cortex. In addition, during childhood we found waves of inter-individual variability that are different for the 4 proteins and include a stage during early development (<1 year when only Gephyrin has high inter-individual variability. We also found that pre- and post-synaptic protein balances develop quickly, suggesting that maturation of certain synaptic functions happens within the first year or two of life. A multidimensional analysis (principle component analysis showed that most of the variance was captured by the sum of the 4 synaptic proteins. We used that sum to compare development of human and rat visual cortex and identified a simple linear equation that provides robust alignment of synaptic age between humans and rats. Alignment of synaptic ages is important for age-appropriate targeting and effective translation of neuroplasticity therapies from the lab to the clinic.

  8. Mapping visual cortex in monkeys and humans using surface-based atlases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Essen, D. C.; Lewis, J. W.; Drury, H. A.; Hadjikhani, N.; Tootell, R. B.; Bakircioglu, M.; Miller, M. I.

    2001-01-01

    We have used surface-based atlases of the cerebral cortex to analyze the functional organization of visual cortex in humans and macaque monkeys. The macaque atlas contains multiple partitioning schemes for visual cortex, including a probabilistic atlas of visual areas derived from a recent architectonic study, plus summary schemes that reflect a combination of physiological and anatomical evidence. The human atlas includes a probabilistic map of eight topographically organized visual areas recently mapped using functional MRI. To facilitate comparisons between species, we used surface-based warping to bring functional and geographic landmarks on the macaque map into register with corresponding landmarks on the human map. The results suggest that extrastriate visual cortex outside the known topographically organized areas is dramatically expanded in human compared to macaque cortex, particularly in the parietal lobe.

  9. Dynamic encoding of speech sequence probability in human temporal cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leonard, Matthew K; Bouchard, Kristofer E; Tang, Claire; Chang, Edward F

    2015-05-06

    Sensory processing involves identification of stimulus features, but also integration with the surrounding sensory and cognitive context. Previous work in animals and humans has shown fine-scale sensitivity to context in the form of learned knowledge about the statistics of the sensory environment, including relative probabilities of discrete units in a stream of sequential auditory input. These statistics are a defining characteristic of one of the most important sequential signals humans encounter: speech. For speech, extensive exposure to a language tunes listeners to the statistics of sound sequences. To address how speech sequence statistics are neurally encoded, we used high-resolution direct cortical recordings from human lateral superior temporal cortex as subjects listened to words and nonwords with varying transition probabilities between sound segments. In addition to their sensitivity to acoustic features (including contextual features, such as coarticulation), we found that neural responses dynamically encoded the language-level probability of both preceding and upcoming speech sounds. Transition probability first negatively modulated neural responses, followed by positive modulation of neural responses, consistent with coordinated predictive and retrospective recognition processes, respectively. Furthermore, transition probability encoding was different for real English words compared with nonwords, providing evidence for online interactions with high-order linguistic knowledge. These results demonstrate that sensory processing of deeply learned stimuli involves integrating physical stimulus features with their contextual sequential structure. Despite not being consciously aware of phoneme sequence statistics, listeners use this information to process spoken input and to link low-level acoustic representations with linguistic information about word identity and meaning. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/357203-12$15.00/0.

  10. Connectivity-based parcellation of the human orbitofrontal cortex.

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    Kahnt, Thorsten; Chang, Luke J; Park, Soyoung Q; Heinzle, Jakob; Haynes, John-Dylan

    2012-05-02

    The primate orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) is involved in reward processing, learning, and decision making. Research in monkeys has shown that this region is densely connected with higher sensory, limbic, and subcortical regions. Moreover, a parcellation of the monkey OFC into two subdivisions has been suggested based on its intrinsic anatomical connections. However, in humans, little is known about any functional subdivisions of the OFC except for a rather coarse medial/lateral distinction. Here, we used resting-state fMRI in combination with unsupervised clustering techniques to investigate whether OFC subdivisions can be revealed based on their functional connectivity profiles with other brain regions. Examination of different cluster solutions provided support for a parcellation into two parts as observed in monkeys, but it also highlighted a much finer hierarchical clustering of the orbital surface. Specifically, we identified (1) a medial, (2) a posterior-central, (3) a central, and (4-6) three lateral clusters spanning the anterior-posterior gradient. Consistent with animal tracing studies, these OFC clusters were connected to other cortical regions such as prefrontal, temporal, and parietal cortices but also subcortical areas in the striatum and the midbrain. These connectivity patterns provide important implications for identifying specific functional roles of OFC subdivisions for reward processing, learning, and decision making. Moreover, this parcellation schema can provide guidance to report results in future studies.

  11. Interaction of streaming and attention in human auditory cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gutschalk, Alexander; Rupp, André; Dykstra, Andrew R

    2015-01-01

    Serially presented tones are sometimes segregated into two perceptually distinct streams. An ongoing debate is whether this basic streaming phenomenon reflects automatic processes or requires attention focused to the stimuli. Here, we examined the influence of focused attention on streaming-related activity in human auditory cortex using magnetoencephalography (MEG). Listeners were presented with a dichotic paradigm in which left-ear stimuli consisted of canonical streaming stimuli (ABA_ or ABAA) and right-ear stimuli consisted of a classical oddball paradigm. In phase one, listeners were instructed to attend the right-ear oddball sequence and detect rare deviants. In phase two, they were instructed to attend the left ear streaming stimulus and report whether they heard one or two streams. The frequency difference (ΔF) of the sequences was set such that the smallest and largest ΔF conditions generally induced one- and two-stream percepts, respectively. Two intermediate ΔF conditions were chosen to elicit bistable percepts (i.e., either one or two streams). Attention enhanced the peak-to-peak amplitude of the P1-N1 complex, but only for ambiguous ΔF conditions, consistent with the notion that automatic mechanisms for streaming tightly interact with attention and that the latter is of particular importance for ambiguous sound sequences.

  12. Human medial frontal cortex activity predicts learning from errors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hester, Robert; Barre, Natalie; Murphy, Kevin; Silk, Tim J; Mattingley, Jason B

    2008-08-01

    Learning from errors is a critical feature of human cognition. It underlies our ability to adapt to changing environmental demands and to tune behavior for optimal performance. The posterior medial frontal cortex (pMFC) has been implicated in the evaluation of errors to control behavior, although it has not previously been shown that activity in this region predicts learning from errors. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging, we examined activity in the pMFC during an associative learning task in which participants had to recall the spatial locations of 2-digit targets and were provided with immediate feedback regarding accuracy. Activity within the pMFC was significantly greater for errors that were subsequently corrected than for errors that were repeated. Moreover, pMFC activity during recall errors predicted future responses (correct vs. incorrect), despite a sizeable interval (on average 70 s) between an error and the next presentation of the same recall probe. Activity within the hippocampus also predicted future performance and correlated with error-feedback-related pMFC activity. A relationship between performance expectations and pMFC activity, in the absence of differing reinforcement value for errors, is consistent with the idea that error-related pMFC activity reflects the extent to which an outcome is "worse than expected."

  13. Brownian Optogenetic-Noise-Photostimulation on the Brain Amplifies Somatosensory-Evoked Field Potentials

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nayeli Huidobro

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Stochastic resonance (SR is an inherent and counter-intuitive mechanism of signal-to-noise ratio (SNR facilitation in biological systems associated with the application of an intermediate level of noise. As a first step to investigate in detail this phenomenon in the somatosensory system, here we examined whether the direct application of noisy light on pyramidal neurons from the mouse-barrel cortex expressing a light-gated channel channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2 can produce facilitation in somatosensory evoked field potentials. Using anesthetized Thy1-ChR2-YFP transgenic mice, and a new neural technology, that we called Brownian optogenetic-noise-photostimulation (BONP, we provide evidence for how BONP directly applied on the barrel cortex modulates the SNR in the amplitude of whisker-evoked field potentials (whisker-EFP. In all transgenic mice, we found that the SNR in the amplitude of whisker-EFP (at 30% of the maximal whisker-EFP exhibited an inverted U-like shape as a function of the BONP level. As a control, we also applied the same experimental paradigm, but in wild-type mice, as expected, we did not find any facilitation effects. Our results show that the application of an intermediate intensity of BONP on the barrel cortex of ChR2 transgenic mice amplifies the SNR of somatosensory whisker-EFPs. This result may be relevant to explain the improvements found in sensory detection in humans produced by the application of transcranial-random-noise-stimulation (tRNS on the scalp.

  14. Hippocampus, Perirhinal Cortex, and Complex Visual Discriminations in Rats and Humans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hales, Jena B.; Broadbent, Nicola J.; Velu, Priya D.; Squire, Larry R.; Clark, Robert E.

    2015-01-01

    Structures in the medial temporal lobe, including the hippocampus and perirhinal cortex, are known to be essential for the formation of long-term memory. Recent animal and human studies have investigated whether perirhinal cortex might also be important for visual perception. In our study, using a simultaneous oddity discrimination task, rats with…

  15. Chemosensory Learning in the Cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edmund eRolls

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Taste is a primary reinforcer. Olfactory-taste and visual-taste association learning takes place in the primate including human orbitofrontal cortex to build representations of flavour. Rapid reversal of this learning can occur using a rule-based learning system that can be reset when an expected taste or flavour reward is not obtained, that is by negative reward prediction error, to which a population of neurons in the orbitofrontal cortex responds. The representation in the orbitofrontal cortex but not the primary taste or olfactory cortex is of the reward value of the visual / olfactory / taste / input as shown by devaluation experiments in which food is fed to satiety, and by correlations with the activations with subjective pleasantness ratings in humans. Sensory-specific satiety for taste, olfactory, visual, and oral somatosensory inputs produced by feeding a particular food to satiety are implemented it is proposed by medium-term synaptic adaptation in the orbitofrontal cortex. Cognitive factors, including word-level descriptions, modulate the representation of the reward value of food in the orbitofrontal cortex, and this effect is learned it is proposed by associative modification of top-down synapses onto neurons activated by bottom-up taste and olfactory inputs when both are active in the orbitofrontal cortex. A similar associative synaptic learning process is proposed to be part of the mechanism for the top-down attentional control to the reward value vs the sensory properties such as intensity of taste and olfactory inputs in the orbitofrontal cortex, as part of a biased activation theory of selective attention.

  16. TMS-induced neural noise in sensory cortex interferes with short-term memory storage in prefrontal cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bancroft, Tyler D; Hogeveen, Jeremy; Hockley, William E; Servos, Philip

    2014-01-01

    In a previous study, Harris et al. (2002) found disruption of vibrotactile short-term memory after applying single-pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to primary somatosensory cortex (SI) early in the maintenance period, and suggested that this demonstrated a role for SI in vibrotactile memory storage. While such a role is compatible with recent suggestions that sensory cortex is the storage substrate for working memory, it stands in contrast to a relatively large body of evidence from human EEG and single-cell recording in primates that instead points to prefrontal cortex as the storage substrate for vibrotactile memory. In the present study, we use computational methods to demonstrate how Harris et al.'s results can be reproduced by TMS-induced activity in sensory cortex and subsequent feedforward interference with memory traces stored in prefrontal cortex, thereby reconciling discordant findings in the tactile memory literature.

  17. Dopamine-dependent changes in the functional connectivity between basal ganglia and cerebral cortex in humans

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Williams, D; Tijssen, M; van Bruggen, G; Bosch, A; Insola, A; Di Lazzaro, V; Mazzone, P; Oliviero, A; Quartarone, A; Speelman, H; Brown, P

    2002-01-01

    We test the hypothesis that interaction between the human basal ganglia and cerebral cortex involves activity in multiple functional circuits characterized by their frequency of oscillation, phase characteristics, dopamine dependency and topography. To this end we took recordings from

  18. Alpha, beta and gamma electrocorticographic rhythms in somatosensory, motor, premotor and prefrontal cortical areas differ in movement execution and observation in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Babiloni, Claudio; Del Percio, Claudio; Vecchio, Fabrizio; Sebastiano, Fabio; Di Gennaro, Giancarlo; Quarato, Pier P; Morace, Roberta; Pavone, Luigi; Soricelli, Andrea; Noce, Giuseppe; Esposito, Vincenzo; Rossini, Paolo Maria; Gallese, Vittorio; Mirabella, Giovanni

    2016-01-01

    In the present study, we tested the hypothesis that both movement execution and observation induce parallel modulations of alpha, beta, and gamma electrocorticographic (ECoG) rhythms in primary somatosensory (Brodmann area 1-2, BA1-2), primary motor (BA4), ventral premotor (BA6), and prefrontal (BA44 and BA45, part of putative human mirror neuron system underlying the understanding of actions of other people) areas. ECoG activity was recorded in drug-resistant epileptic patients during the execution of actions to reach and grasp common objects according to their affordances, as well as during the observation of the same actions performed by an experimenter. Both action execution and observation induced a desynchronization of alpha and beta rhythms in BA1-2, BA4, BA6, BA44 and BA45, which was generally higher in amplitude during the former than the latter condition. Action execution also induced a major synchronization of gamma rhythms in BA4 and BA6, again more during the execution of an action than during its observation. Human primary sensorimotor, premotor, and prefrontal areas do generate alpha, beta, and gamma rhythms and differently modulate them during action execution and observation. Gamma rhythms of motor areas are especially involved in action execution. Oscillatory activity of neural populations in sensorimotor, premotor and prefrontal (part of human mirror neuron system) areas represents and distinguishes own actions from those of other people. This methodological approach might be used for a neurophysiological diagnostic imaging of social cognition in epileptic patients. Copyright © 2015 International Federation of Clinical Neurophysiology. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. The primary motor and premotor areas of the human cerebral cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chouinard, Philippe A; Paus, Tomás

    2006-04-01

    Brodmann's cytoarchitectonic map of the human cortex designates area 4 as cortex in the anterior bank of the precentral sulcus and area 6 as cortex encompassing the precentral gyrus and the posterior portion of the superior frontal gyrus on both the lateral and medial surfaces of the brain. More than 70 years ago, Fulton proposed a functional distinction between these two areas, coining the terms primary motor area for cortex in Brodmann area 4 and premotor area for cortex in Brodmann area 6. The parcellation of the cortical motor system has subsequently become more complex. Several nonprimary motor areas have been identified in the brain of the macaque monkey, and associations between anatomy and function in the human brain are being tested continuously using brain mapping techniques. In the present review, the authors discuss the unique properties of the primary motor area (M1), the dorsal portion of the premotor cortex (PMd), and the ventral portion of the premotor cortex (PMv). They end this review by discussing how the premotor areas influence M1.

  20. Is orbital volume associated with eyeball and visual cortex volume in humans?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pearce, Eiluned; Bridge, Holly

    2013-01-01

    In humans orbital volume increases linearly with absolute latitude. Scaling across mammals between visual system components suggests that these larger orbits should translate into larger eyes and visual cortices in high latitude humans. Larger eyes at high latitudes may be required to maintain adequate visual acuity and enhance visual sensitivity under lower light levels. To test the assumption that orbital volume can accurately index eyeball and visual cortex volumes specifically in humans. Structural Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) techniques are employed to measure eye and orbit (n = 88) and brain and visual cortex (n = 99) volumes in living humans. Facial dimensions and foramen magnum area (a proxy for body mass) were also measured. A significant positive linear relationship was found between (i) orbital and eyeball volumes, (ii) eyeball and visual cortex grey matter volumes and (iii) different visual cortical areas, independently of overall brain volume. In humans the components of the visual system scale from orbit to eye to visual cortex volume independently of overall brain size. These findings indicate that orbit volume can index eye and visual cortex volume in humans, suggesting that larger high latitude orbits do translate into larger visual cortices.

  1. Structural reorganization of the early visual cortex following Braille training in sighted adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bola, Łukasz; Siuda-Krzywicka, Katarzyna; Paplińska, Małgorzata; Sumera, Ewa; Zimmermann, Maria; Jednoróg, Katarzyna; Marchewka, Artur; Szwed, Marcin

    2017-12-12

    Training can induce cross-modal plasticity in the human cortex. A well-known example of this phenomenon is the recruitment of visual areas for tactile and auditory processing. It remains unclear to what extent such plasticity is associated with changes in anatomy. Here we enrolled 29 sighted adults into a nine-month tactile Braille-reading training, and used voxel-based morphometry and diffusion tensor imaging to describe the resulting anatomical changes. In addition, we collected resting-state fMRI data to relate these changes to functional connectivity between visual and somatosensory-motor cortices. Following Braille-training, we observed substantial grey and white matter reorganization in the anterior part of early visual cortex (peripheral visual field). Moreover, relative to its posterior, foveal part, the peripheral representation of early visual cortex had stronger functional connections to somatosensory and motor cortices even before the onset of training. Previous studies show that the early visual cortex can be functionally recruited for tactile discrimination, including recognition of Braille characters. Our results demonstrate that reorganization in this region induced by tactile training can also be anatomical. This change most likely reflects a strengthening of existing connectivity between the peripheral visual cortex and somatosensory cortices, which suggests a putative mechanism for cross-modal recruitment of visual areas.

  2. Estimates of segregation and overlap of functional connectivity networks in the human cerebral cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yeo, B T Thomas; Krienen, Fenna M; Chee, Michael W L; Buckner, Randy L

    2014-03-01

    The organization of the human cerebral cortex has recently been explored using techniques for parcellating the cortex into distinct functionally coupled networks. The divergent and convergent nature of cortico-cortical anatomic connections suggests the need to consider the possibility of regions belonging to multiple networks and hierarchies among networks. Here we applied the Latent Dirichlet Allocation (LDA) model and spatial independent component analysis (ICA) to solve for functionally coupled cerebral networks without assuming that cortical regions belong to a single network. Data analyzed included 1000 subjects from the Brain Genomics Superstruct Project (GSP) and 12 high quality individual subjects from the Human Connectome Project (HCP). The organization of the cerebral cortex was similar regardless of whether a winner-take-all approach or the more relaxed constraints of LDA (or ICA) were imposed. This suggests that large-scale networks may function as partially isolated modules. Several notable interactions among networks were uncovered by the LDA analysis. Many association regions belong to at least two networks, while somatomotor and early visual cortices are especially isolated. As examples of interaction, the precuneus, lateral temporal cortex, medial prefrontal cortex and posterior parietal cortex participate in multiple paralimbic networks that together comprise subsystems of the default network. In addition, regions at or near the frontal eye field and human lateral intraparietal area homologue participate in multiple hierarchically organized networks. These observations were replicated in both datasets and could be detected (and replicated) in individual subjects from the HCP. © 2013.

  3. Functional changes in the human auditory cortex in ageing.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oliver Profant

    Full Text Available Hearing loss, presbycusis, is one of the most common sensory declines in the ageing population. Presbycusis is characterised by a deterioration in the processing of temporal sound features as well as a decline in speech perception, thus indicating a possible central component. With the aim to explore the central component of presbycusis, we studied the function of the auditory cortex by functional MRI in two groups of elderly subjects (>65 years and compared the results with young subjects (cortex. The fMRI showed only minimal activation in response to the 8 kHz stimulation, despite the fact that all subjects heard the stimulus. Both elderly groups showed greater activation in response to acoustical stimuli in the temporal lobes in comparison with young subjects. In addition, activation in the right temporal lobe was more expressed than in the left temporal lobe in both elderly groups, whereas in the young control subjects (YC leftward lateralization was present. No statistically significant differences in activation of the auditory cortex were found between the MP and EP groups. The greater extent of cortical activation in elderly subjects in comparison with young subjects, with an asymmetry towards the right side, may serve as a compensatory mechanism for the impaired processing of auditory information appearing as a consequence of ageing.

  4. Functional Changes in the Human Auditory Cortex in Ageing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Profant, Oliver; Tintěra, Jaroslav; Balogová, Zuzana; Ibrahim, Ibrahim; Jilek, Milan; Syka, Josef

    2015-01-01

    Hearing loss, presbycusis, is one of the most common sensory declines in the ageing population. Presbycusis is characterised by a deterioration in the processing of temporal sound features as well as a decline in speech perception, thus indicating a possible central component. With the aim to explore the central component of presbycusis, we studied the function of the auditory cortex by functional MRI in two groups of elderly subjects (>65 years) and compared the results with young subjects (presbycusis (EP) differed from the elderly group with mild presbycusis (MP) in hearing thresholds measured by pure tone audiometry, presence and amplitudes of transient otoacoustic emissions (TEOAE) and distortion-product oto-acoustic emissions (DPOAE), as well as in speech-understanding under noisy conditions. Acoustically evoked activity (pink noise centered around 350 Hz, 700 Hz, 1.5 kHz, 3 kHz, 8 kHz), recorded by BOLD fMRI from an area centered on Heschl’s gyrus, was used to determine age-related changes at the level of the auditory cortex. The fMRI showed only minimal activation in response to the 8 kHz stimulation, despite the fact that all subjects heard the stimulus. Both elderly groups showed greater activation in response to acoustical stimuli in the temporal lobes in comparison with young subjects. In addition, activation in the right temporal lobe was more expressed than in the left temporal lobe in both elderly groups, whereas in the young control subjects (YC) leftward lateralization was present. No statistically significant differences in activation of the auditory cortex were found between the MP and EP groups. The greater extent of cortical activation in elderly subjects in comparison with young subjects, with an asymmetry towards the right side, may serve as a compensatory mechanism for the impaired processing of auditory information appearing as a consequence of ageing. PMID:25734519

  5. Voxel-based lesion-symptom mapping of stroke lesions underlying somatosensory deficits

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah Meyer

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between stroke lesion location and the resulting somatosensory deficit. We studied exteroceptive and proprioceptive somatosensory symptoms and stroke lesions in 38 patients with first-ever acute stroke. The Erasmus modified Nottingham Sensory Assessment was used to clinically evaluate somatosensory functioning in the arm and hand within the first week after stroke onset. Additionally, more objective measures such as the perceptual threshold of touch and somatosensory evoked potentials were recorded. Non-parametric voxel-based lesion-symptom mapping was performed to investigate lesion contribution to different somatosensory deficits in the upper limb. Additionally, structural connectivity of brain areas that demonstrated the strongest association with somatosensory symptoms was determined, using probabilistic fiber tracking based on diffusion tensor imaging data from a healthy age-matched sample. Voxels with a significant association to somatosensory deficits were clustered in two core brain regions: the central parietal white matter, also referred to as the sensory component of the superior thalamic radiation, and the parietal operculum close to the insular cortex, representing the secondary somatosensory cortex. Our objective recordings confirmed findings from clinical assessments. Probabilistic tracking connected the first region to thalamus, internal capsule, brain stem, postcentral gyrus, cerebellum, and frontal pathways, while the second region demonstrated structural connections to thalamus, insular and primary somatosensory cortex. This study reveals that stroke lesions in the sensory fibers of the superior thalamocortical radiation and the parietal operculum are significantly associated with multiple exteroceptive and proprioceptive deficits in the arm and hand.

  6. The Effects of Context and Attention on Spiking Activity in Human Early Visual Cortex

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Self, Matthew W.; Peters, Judith C.; Possel, Jessy K.; Reithler, Joel; Goebel, Rainer; Ris, Peterjan; Jeurissen, Danique; Reddy, Leila; Claus, Steven; Baayen, Johannes C.; Roelfsema, Pieter R.

    2016-01-01

    Here we report the first quantitative analysis of spiking activity in human early visual cortex. We recorded multi-unit activity from two electrodes in area V2/V3 of a human patient implanted with depth electrodes as part of her treatment for epilepsy. We observed well-localized multi-unit receptive

  7. The Effects of Context and Attention on Spiking Activity in Human Early Visual Cortex

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Self, Matthew W; Peters, Judith C; Possel, Jessy K; Reithler, Joel; Goebel, Rainer; Ris, Peterjan; Jeurissen, Danique; Reddy, Leila; Claus, Steven; Baayen, Johannes C; Roelfsema, Pieter R

    Here we report the first quantitative analysis of spiking activity in human early visual cortex. We recorded multi-unit activity from two electrodes in area V2/V3 of a human patient implanted with depth electrodes as part of her treatment for epilepsy. We observed well-localized multi-unit receptive

  8. Probabilistic tractography recovers a rostrocaudal trajectory of connectivity variability in the human insular cortex

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cerliani, Leonardo; Thomas, Rajat M.; Jbabdi, Saad; Siero, Jeroen C. W.; Nanetti, Luca; Crippa, Alessandro; Gazzola, Valeria; D'Arceuil, Helen; Keysers, Christian

    The insular cortex of macaques has a wide spectrum of anatomical connections whose distribution is related to its heterogeneous cytoarchitecture. Although there is evidence of a similar cytoarchitectural arrangement in humans, the anatomical connectivity of the insula in the human brain has not yet

  9. Human Parahippocampal Cortex Supports Spatial Binding in Visual Working Memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dundon, Neil Michael; Katshu, Mohammad Zia Ul Haq; Harry, Bronson; Roberts, Daniel; Leek, E Charles; Downing, Paul; Sapir, Ayelet; Roberts, Craig; d'Avossa, Giovanni

    2017-09-15

    Studies investigating the functional organization of the medial temporal lobe (MTL) suggest that parahippocampal cortex (PHC) generates representations of spatial and contextual information used by the hippocampus in the formation of episodic memories. However, evidence from animal studies also implicates PHC in spatial binding of visual information held in short term, working memory. Here we examined a 46-year-old man (P.J.), after he had recovered from bilateral medial occipitotemporal cortex strokes resulting in ischemic lesions of PHC and hippocampal atrophy, and a group of age-matched healthy controls. When recalling the color of 1 of 2 objects, P.J. misidentified the target when cued by its location, but not shape. When recalling the position of 1 of 3 objects, he frequently misidentified the target, which was cued by its color. Increasing the duration of the memory delay had no impact on the proportion of binding errors, but did significantly worsen recall precision in both P.J. and controls. We conclude that PHC may play a crucial role in spatial binding during encoding of visual information in working memory. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  10. Vibration and muscle contraction affect somatosensory evoked potentials

    OpenAIRE

    Cohen, LG; Starr, A

    1985-01-01

    We recorded potentials evoked by specific somatosensory stimuli over peripheral nerve, spinal cord, and cerebral cortex. Vibration attenuated spinal and cerebral potentials evoked by mixed nerve and muscle spindle stimulation; in one subject that was tested, there was no effect on cutaneous input. Presynaptic inhibition of Ia input in the spinal cord and muscle spindle receptor occupancy are probably the responsible mechanisms. In contrast, muscle contraction attenuated cerebral potentials to...

  11. Somatosensory abnormalities in knee OA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wylde, Vikki; Palmer, Shea; Learmonth, Ian D; Dieppe, Paul

    2012-03-01

    The aim of this study was to use quantitative sensory testing (QST) to explore the range and prevalence of somatosensory abnormalities demonstrated by patients with advanced knee OA. One hundred and seven knee OA patients and 50 age- and sex-matched healthy participants attended a 1-h QST session. Testing was performed on the medial side of the knee and the pain-free forearm. Light-touch thresholds were assessed using von Frey filaments, pressure pain thresholds using a digital pressure algometer, and thermal sensation and pain thresholds using a Thermotest MSA. Significant differences in median threshold values from knee OA patients and healthy participants were identified using Mann-Whitney U-tests. The z-score transformations were used to determine the prevalence of the different somatosensory abnormalities in knee OA patients. Testing identified 70% of knee OA patients as having at least one somatosensory abnormality. Comparison of median threshold values between knee OA patients and healthy participants revealed that patients had localized thermal and tactile hypoaesthesia and pressure hyperalgesia at the osteoarthritic knee. Tactile hypoaesthesia and pressure hyperalgesia were also present at the pain-free forearm. The most prevalent somatosensory abnormalities were tactile hypoaesthesia and pressure hyperalgesia, evident in between 20 and 34% of patients. This study found that OA patients demonstrate an array of somatosensory abnormalities, of which the most prevalent were tactile hypoaesthesia and pressure hyperalgesia. Further research is now needed to establish the clinical implications of these somatosensory abnormalities.

  12. Exploratory Metabolomic Analyses Reveal Compounds Correlated with Lutein Concentration in Frontal Cortex, Hippocampus, and Occipital Cortex of Human Infant Brain.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jacqueline C Lieblein-Boff

    Full Text Available Lutein is a dietary carotenoid well known for its role as an antioxidant in the macula, and recent reports implicate a role for lutein in cognitive function. Lutein is the dominant carotenoid in both pediatric and geriatric brain tissue. In addition, cognitive function in older adults correlated with macular and postmortem brain lutein concentrations. Furthermore, lutein was found to preferentially accumulate in the infant brain in comparison to other carotenoids that are predominant in diet. While lutein is consistently related to cognitive function, the mechanisms by which lutein may influence cognition are not clear. In an effort to identify potential mechanisms through which lutein might influence neurodevelopment, an exploratory study relating metabolite signatures and lutein was completed. Post-mortem metabolomic analyses were performed on human infant brain tissues in three regions important for learning and memory: the frontal cortex, hippocampus, and occipital cortex. Metabolomic profiles were compared to lutein concentration, and correlations were identified and reported here. A total of 1276 correlations were carried out across all brain regions. Of 427 metabolites analyzed, 257 were metabolites of known identity. Unidentified metabolite correlations (510 were excluded. In addition, moderate correlations with xenobiotic relationships (2 or those driven by single outliers (3 were excluded from further study. Lutein concentrations correlated with lipid pathway metabolites, energy pathway metabolites, brain osmolytes, amino acid neurotransmitters, and the antioxidant homocarnosine. These correlations were often brain region-specific. Revealing relationships between lutein and metabolic pathways may help identify potential candidates on which to complete further analyses and may shed light on important roles of lutein in the human brain during development.

  13. Dissociation of object and spatial visual processing pathways in human extrastriate cortex

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Haxby, J.V.; Grady, C.L.; Horwitz, B.; Ungerleider, L.G.; Mishkin, M.; Carson, R.E.; Herscovitch, P.; Schapiro, M.B.; Rapoport, S.I. (National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD (USA))

    1991-03-01

    The existence and neuroanatomical locations of separate extrastriate visual pathways for object recognition and spatial localization were investigated in healthy young men. Regional cerebral blood flow was measured by positron emission tomography and bolus injections of H2(15)O, while subjects performed face matching, dot-location matching, or sensorimotor control tasks. Both visual matching tasks activated lateral occipital cortex. Face discrimination alone activated a region of occipitotemporal cortex that was anterior and inferior to the occipital area activated by both tasks. The spatial location task alone activated a region of lateral superior parietal cortex. Perisylvian and anterior temporal cortices were not activated by either task. These results demonstrate the existence of three functionally dissociable regions of human visual extrastriate cortex. The ventral and dorsal locations of the regions specialized for object recognition and spatial localization, respectively, suggest some homology between human and nonhuman primate extrastriate cortex, with displacement in human brain, possibly related to the evolution of phylogenetically newer cortical areas.

  14. Specific metabolomics adaptations define a differential regional vulnerability in the adult human cerebral cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rosanna Cabré

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Brain neurons offer diverse responses to stresses and detrimental factors during development and aging, and as a result of both neurodegenerative and neuropsychiatric disorders. This multiplicity of responses can be ascribed to the great diversity among neuronal populations. Here we have determined the metabolomic profile of three healthy adult human brain regions—entorhinal cortex, hippocampus, and frontal cortex—using mass spectrometry-based technologies. Our results show the existence of a lessened energy demand, mitochondrial stress, and lower one-carbon metabolism (particularly restricted to the methionine cycle specifically in frontal cortex. These findings, along with the better antioxidant capacity and lower mTOR signaling also seen in frontal cortex, suggest that this brain region is especially resistant to stress compared to the entorhinal cortex and hippocampus, which are more vulnerable regions. Globally, our results show the presence of specific metabolomics adaptations in three mature, healthy human brain regions, confirming the existence of cross-regional differences in cell vulnerability in the human cerebral cortex.

  15. Functional and structural mapping of human cerebral cortex: solutions are in the surfaces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Essen, D. C.; Drury, H. A.; Joshi, S.; Miller, M. I.

    1998-01-01

    The human cerebral cortex is notorious for the depth and irregularity of its convolutions and for its variability from one individual to the next. These complexities of cortical geography have been a chronic impediment to studies of functional specialization in the cortex. In this report, we discuss ways to compensate for the convolutions by using a combination of strategies whose common denominator involves explicit reconstructions of the cortical surface. Surface-based visualization involves reconstructing cortical surfaces and displaying them, along with associated experimental data, in various complementary formats (including three-dimensional native configurations, two-dimensional slices, extensively smoothed surfaces, ellipsoidal representations, and cortical flat maps). Generating these representations for the cortex of the Visible Man leads to a surface-based atlas that has important advantages over conventional stereotaxic atlases as a substrate for displaying and analyzing large amounts of experimental data. We illustrate this by showing the relationship between functionally specialized regions and topographically organized areas in human visual cortex. Surface-based warping allows data to be mapped from individual hemispheres to a surface-based atlas while respecting surface topology, improving registration of identifiable landmarks, and minimizing unwanted distortions. Surface-based warping also can aid in comparisons between species, which we illustrate by warping a macaque flat map to match the shape of a human flat map. Collectively, these approaches will allow more refined analyses of commonalities as well as individual differences in the functional organization of primate cerebral cortex.

  16. Mapping the after-effects of theta burst stimulation on the human auditory cortex with functional imaging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andoh, Jamila; Zatorre, Robert J

    2012-09-12

    Auditory cortex pertains to the processing of sound, which is at the basis of speech or music-related processing. However, despite considerable recent progress, the functional properties and lateralization of the human auditory cortex are far from being fully understood. Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) is a non-invasive technique that can transiently or lastingly modulate cortical excitability via the application of localized magnetic field pulses, and represents a unique method of exploring plasticity and connectivity. It has only recently begun to be applied to understand auditory cortical function. An important issue in using TMS is that the physiological consequences of the stimulation are difficult to establish. Although many TMS studies make the implicit assumption that the area targeted by the coil is the area affected, this need not be the case, particularly for complex cognitive functions which depend on interactions across many brain regions. One solution to this problem is to combine TMS with functional Magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). The idea here is that fMRI will provide an index of changes in brain activity associated with TMS. Thus, fMRI would give an independent means of assessing which areas are affected by TMS and how they are modulated. In addition, fMRI allows the assessment of functional connectivity, which represents a measure of the temporal coupling between distant regions. It can thus be useful not only to measure the net activity modulation induced by TMS in given locations, but also the degree to which the network properties are affected by TMS, via any observed changes in functional connectivity. Different approaches exist to combine TMS and functional imaging according to the temporal order of the methods. Functional MRI can be applied before, during, after, or both before and after TMS. Recently, some studies interleaved TMS and fMRI in order to provide online mapping of the functional changes induced by TMS. However, this

  17. [Pain information pathways from the periphery to the cerebral cortex].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuroda, Ryotaro; Kawabata, Atsufumi

    2003-07-01

    A recent PET study revealed that the first and second somatosensory cortices (SI, SII), and the anterior cingulate cortex are activated by painful peripheral stimulation in humans. It has become clear that painful signals (nociceptive information) evoked at the periphery are transmitted via various circuits to the multiple cerebral cortices where pain signals are processed and perceived. Human or clinical pain is not merely a modality of somatic sensation, but associated with the affect that accompanies sensation. Consequently, pain has a somatosensory-discriminative aspect and an affective-cognitive aspect that are processed in different but correlated brain structures in the ascending circuits. Considering the physiologic characteristics and fiber connections, the SI and SII cortices appear to be involved in somatosensory-discriminative pain, and the anterior cingulate cortex (area 24) in the affective-cognitive aspect of pain. This paper deals with the ascending pain pathways from the periphery to these cortices and their interconnections. Our recent findings on the protease-activated receptors 1 and 2 (PAR-1, and -2), which are confirmed to exist in the dorsal root ganglion cells, are also described. Activation of PAR-2 during inflammation or tissue injury at the periphery is pronociceptive, while PAR-1 appears to be antinociceptive. Based on the these findings, PAR-1 and PAR-2 are attracting interest as target molecules for new drug development.

  18. Learning-dependent plasticity in human auditory cortex during appetitive operant conditioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Puschmann, Sebastian; Brechmann, André; Thiel, Christiane M

    2013-11-01

    Animal experiments provide evidence that learning to associate an auditory stimulus with a reward causes representational changes in auditory cortex. However, most studies did not investigate the temporal formation of learning-dependent plasticity during the task but rather compared auditory cortex receptive fields before and after conditioning. We here present a functional magnetic resonance imaging study on learning-related plasticity in the human auditory cortex during operant appetitive conditioning. Participants had to learn to associate a specific category of frequency-modulated tones with a reward. Only participants who learned this association developed learning-dependent plasticity in left auditory cortex over the course of the experiment. No differential responses to reward predicting and nonreward predicting tones were found in auditory cortex in nonlearners. In addition, learners showed similar learning-induced differential responses to reward-predicting and nonreward-predicting tones in the ventral tegmental area and the nucleus accumbens, two core regions of the dopaminergic neurotransmitter system. This may indicate a dopaminergic influence on the formation of learning-dependent plasticity in auditory cortex, as it has been suggested by previous animal studies. Copyright © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  19. Decoding of faces and face components in face-sensitive human visual cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David F Nichols

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available A great challenge to the field of visual neuroscience is to understand how faces are encoded and represented within the human brain. Here we show evidence from functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI for spatially distributed processing of the whole face and its components in face-sensitive human visual cortex. We used multi-class linear pattern classifiers constructed with a leave-one-scan-out verification procedure to discriminate brain activation patterns elicited by whole faces, the internal features alone, and the external head outline alone. Furthermore, our results suggest that whole faces are represented disproportionately in the fusiform cortex (FFA whereas the building blocks of faces are represented disproportionately in occipitotemporal cortex (OFA. Faces and face components may therefore be organized with functional clustering within both the FFA and OFA, but with specialization for face components in the OFA and the whole face in the FFA.

  20. The Effects of Context and Attention on Spiking Activity in Human Early Visual Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Self, Matthew W; Peters, Judith C; Possel, Jessy K; Reithler, Joel; Goebel, Rainer; Ris, Peterjan; Jeurissen, Danique; Reddy, Leila; Claus, Steven; Baayen, Johannes C; Roelfsema, Pieter R

    2016-03-01

    Here we report the first quantitative analysis of spiking activity in human early visual cortex. We recorded multi-unit activity from two electrodes in area V2/V3 of a human patient implanted with depth electrodes as part of her treatment for epilepsy. We observed well-localized multi-unit receptive fields with tunings for contrast, orientation, spatial frequency, and size, similar to those reported in the macaque. We also observed pronounced gamma oscillations in the local-field potential that could be used to estimate the underlying spiking response properties. Spiking responses were modulated by visual context and attention. We observed orientation-tuned surround suppression: responses were suppressed by image regions with a uniform orientation and enhanced by orientation contrast. Additionally, responses were enhanced on regions that perceptually segregated from the background, indicating that neurons in the human visual cortex are sensitive to figure-ground structure. Spiking responses were also modulated by object-based attention. When the patient mentally traced a curve through the neurons' receptive fields, the accompanying shift of attention enhanced neuronal activity. These results demonstrate that the tuning properties of cells in the human early visual cortex are similar to those in the macaque and that responses can be modulated by both contextual factors and behavioral relevance. Our results, therefore, imply that the macaque visual system is an excellent model for the human visual cortex.

  1. The Effects of Context and Attention on Spiking Activity in Human Early Visual Cortex.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew W Self

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Here we report the first quantitative analysis of spiking activity in human early visual cortex. We recorded multi-unit activity from two electrodes in area V2/V3 of a human patient implanted with depth electrodes as part of her treatment for epilepsy. We observed well-localized multi-unit receptive fields with tunings for contrast, orientation, spatial frequency, and size, similar to those reported in the macaque. We also observed pronounced gamma oscillations in the local-field potential that could be used to estimate the underlying spiking response properties. Spiking responses were modulated by visual context and attention. We observed orientation-tuned surround suppression: responses were suppressed by image regions with a uniform orientation and enhanced by orientation contrast. Additionally, responses were enhanced on regions that perceptually segregated from the background, indicating that neurons in the human visual cortex are sensitive to figure-ground structure. Spiking responses were also modulated by object-based attention. When the patient mentally traced a curve through the neurons' receptive fields, the accompanying shift of attention enhanced neuronal activity. These results demonstrate that the tuning properties of cells in the human early visual cortex are similar to those in the macaque and that responses can be modulated by both contextual factors and behavioral relevance. Our results, therefore, imply that the macaque visual system is an excellent model for the human visual cortex.

  2. The role of human ventral visual cortex in motion perception

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saygin, Ayse P.; Lorenzi, Lauren J.; Egan, Ryan; Rees, Geraint; Behrmann, Marlene

    2013-01-01

    Visual motion perception is fundamental to many aspects of visual perception. Visual motion perception has long been associated with the dorsal (parietal) pathway and the involvement of the ventral ‘form’ (temporal) visual pathway has not been considered critical for normal motion perception. Here, we evaluated this view by examining whether circumscribed damage to ventral visual cortex impaired motion perception. The perception of motion in basic, non-form tasks (motion coherence and motion detection) and complex structure-from-motion, for a wide range of motion speeds, all centrally displayed, was assessed in five patients with a circumscribed lesion to either the right or left ventral visual pathway. Patients with a right, but not with a left, ventral visual lesion displayed widespread impairments in central motion perception even for non-form motion, for both slow and for fast speeds, and this held true independent of the integrity of areas MT/V5, V3A or parietal regions. In contrast with the traditional view in which only the dorsal visual stream is critical for motion perception, these novel findings implicate a more distributed circuit in which the integrity of the right ventral visual pathway is also necessary even for the perception of non-form motion. PMID:23983030

  3. Understanding the Dorsal and Ventral Systems of the Human Cerebral Cortex: Beyond Dichotomies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borst, Gregoire; Thompson, William L.; Kosslyn, Stephen M.

    2011-01-01

    Traditionally, characterizations of the macrolevel functional organization of the human cerebral cortex have focused on the left and right cerebral hemispheres. However, the idea of left brain versus right brain functions has been shown to be an oversimplification. We argue here that a top-bottom divide, rather than a left-right divide, is a more…

  4. Severe cell reduction in the future brain cortex in human growth-restricted fetuses and infants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Samuelsen, Grethe B; Pakkenberg, Bente; Bogdanović, Nenad

    2007-01-01

    with controls. The daily increase in brain cells in the future cortex was only half of that of the controls. In the 3 other developmental zones, no significant differences in cell numbers could be demonstrated. CONCLUSIONS: IUGR in humans is associated with a severe reduction in cortical growth...

  5. TMS-induced neural noise in sensory cortex interferes with short-term memory storage

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tyler D Bancroft

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available In a previous study, Harris et al. (2002 found disruption of vibrotactile short-term memory after applying single-pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation to primary somatosensory cortex (SI early in the maintenance period, and suggested that this demonstrated a role for SI in vibrotactile memory storage. While such a role is compatible with recent suggestions that sensory cortex is the storage substrate for working memory, it stands in contrast to a relatively large body of evidence from human EEG and single-cell recording in primates that instead points to prefrontal cortex as the storage substrate for vibrotactile memory. In the present study, we use computational methods to demonstrate how Harris et al.’s results can be reproduced by TMS-induced activity in sensory cortex and subsequent feedforward interference with memory traces stored in prefrontal cortex, thereby reconciling discordant findings in the tactile memory literature.

  6. The Encoding of Sound Source Elevation in the Human Auditory Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trapeau, Régis; Schönwiesner, Marc

    2018-03-28

    Spatial hearing is a crucial capacity of the auditory system. While the encoding of horizontal sound direction has been extensively studied, very little is known about the representation of vertical sound direction in the auditory cortex. Using high-resolution fMRI, we measured voxelwise sound elevation tuning curves in human auditory cortex and show that sound elevation is represented by broad tuning functions preferring lower elevations as well as secondary narrow tuning functions preferring individual elevation directions. We changed the ear shape of participants (male and female) with silicone molds for several days. This manipulation reduced or abolished the ability to discriminate sound elevation and flattened cortical tuning curves. Tuning curves recovered their original shape as participants adapted to the modified ears and regained elevation perception over time. These findings suggest that the elevation tuning observed in low-level auditory cortex did not arise from the physical features of the stimuli but is contingent on experience with spectral cues and covaries with the change in perception. One explanation for this observation may be that the tuning in low-level auditory cortex underlies the subjective perception of sound elevation. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT This study addresses two fundamental questions about the brain representation of sensory stimuli: how the vertical spatial axis of auditory space is represented in the auditory cortex and whether low-level sensory cortex represents physical stimulus features or subjective perceptual attributes. Using high-resolution fMRI, we show that vertical sound direction is represented by broad tuning functions preferring lower elevations as well as secondary narrow tuning functions preferring individual elevation directions. In addition, we demonstrate that the shape of these tuning functions is contingent on experience with spectral cues and covaries with the change in perception, which may indicate that the

  7. Plasticity of the human auditory cortex related to musical training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pantev, Christo; Herholz, Sibylle C

    2011-11-01

    During the last decades music neuroscience has become a rapidly growing field within the area of neuroscience. Music is particularly well suited for studying neuronal plasticity in the human brain because musical training is more complex and multimodal than most other daily life activities, and because prospective and professional musicians usually pursue the training with high and long-lasting commitment. Therefore, music has increasingly been used as a tool for the investigation of human cognition and its underlying brain mechanisms. Music relates to many brain functions like perception, action, cognition, emotion, learning and memory and therefore music is an ideal tool to investigate how the human brain is working and how different brain functions interact. Novel findings have been obtained in the field of induced cortical plasticity by musical training. The positive effects, which music in its various forms has in the healthy human brain are not only important in the framework of basic neuroscience, but they also will strongly affect the practices in neuro-rehabilitation. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Anatomical segmentation of the human medial prefrontal cortex

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Corcoles-Parada, M.; Müller, N.C.J.; Ubero, M.; Serrano-Del-Pueblo, V.M.; Mansilla, F.; Marcos-Rabal, P.; Artacho-Perula, E.; Dresler, M.; Insausti, R.; Fernandez, G.; Munoz-Lopez, M.

    2017-01-01

    The medial prefrontal areas 32, 24, 14, and 25 (mPFC) form part of the limbic memory system, but little is known about their functional specialization in humans. To add anatomical precision to structural and functional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) data, we aimed to identify these mPFC subareas

  9. Identity-specific coding of future rewards in the human orbitofrontal cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howard, James D; Gottfried, Jay A; Tobler, Philippe N; Kahnt, Thorsten

    2015-04-21

    Nervous systems must encode information about the identity of expected outcomes to make adaptive decisions. However, the neural mechanisms underlying identity-specific value signaling remain poorly understood. By manipulating the value and identity of appetizing food odors in a pattern-based imaging paradigm of human classical conditioning, we were able to identify dissociable predictive representations of identity-specific reward in orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) and identity-general reward in ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC). Reward-related functional coupling between OFC and olfactory (piriform) cortex and between vmPFC and amygdala revealed parallel pathways that support identity-specific and -general predictive signaling. The demonstration of identity-specific value representations in OFC highlights a role for this region in model-based behavior and reveals mechanisms by which appetitive behavior can go awry.

  10. Frequency-Selective Attention in Auditory Scenes Recruits Frequency Representations Throughout Human Superior Temporal Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riecke, Lars; Peters, Judith C; Valente, Giancarlo; Kemper, Valentin G; Formisano, Elia; Sorger, Bettina

    2017-05-01

    A sound of interest may be tracked amid other salient sounds by focusing attention on its characteristic features including its frequency. Functional magnetic resonance imaging findings have indicated that frequency representations in human primary auditory cortex (AC) contribute to this feat. However, attentional modulations were examined at relatively low spatial and spectral resolutions, and frequency-selective contributions outside the primary AC could not be established. To address these issues, we compared blood oxygenation level-dependent (BOLD) responses in the superior temporal cortex of human listeners while they identified single frequencies versus listened selectively for various frequencies within a multifrequency scene. Using best-frequency mapping, we observed that the detailed spatial layout of attention-induced BOLD response enhancements in primary AC follows the tonotopy of stimulus-driven frequency representations-analogous to the "spotlight" of attention enhancing visuospatial representations in retinotopic visual cortex. Moreover, using an algorithm trained to discriminate stimulus-driven frequency representations, we could successfully decode the focus of frequency-selective attention from listeners' BOLD response patterns in nonprimary AC. Our results indicate that the human brain facilitates selective listening to a frequency of interest in a scene by reinforcing the fine-grained activity pattern throughout the entire superior temporal cortex that would be evoked if that frequency was present alone. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  11. Optical properties of the medulla and the cortex of human scalp hair

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kharin, Aleksey; Varghese, Babu; Verhagen, Rieko; Uzunbajakava, Natallia

    2009-03-01

    An increasing number of applications, including non- or minimally invasive diagnostics and treatment as well as various cosmetic procedures, has resulted in a need to determine the optical properties of hair and its structures. We report on the measurement of the total attenuation coefficient of the cortex and the medulla of blond, gray, and Asian black human scalp hair at a 633-nm wavelength. Our results show that for blond and gray hair the total attenuation coefficient of the medulla is more than 200 times higher compared to that of the cortex. This difference is only 1.5 times for Asian black hair. Furthermore, we present the total attenuation coefficient of the cortex of blond, gray, light brown, and Asian black hair measured at wavelengths of 409, 532, 633, 800, and 1064 nm. The total attenuation coefficient consistently decreases with an increase in wavelength, as well as with a decrease in hair pigmentation. Additionally, we demonstrate the dependence of the total attenuation coefficient of the cortex and the medulla of Asian black hair on the polarization of incident light. A similar dependence is observed for the cortex of blond and gray hair but not for the medulla of these hair types.

  12. The neural dynamics of reward value and risk coding in the human orbitofrontal cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Yansong; Vanni-Mercier, Giovanna; Isnard, Jean; Mauguière, François; Dreher, Jean-Claude

    2016-04-01

    The orbitofrontal cortex is known to carry information regarding expected reward, risk and experienced outcome. Yet, due to inherent limitations in lesion and neuroimaging methods, the neural dynamics of these computations has remained elusive in humans. Here, taking advantage of the high temporal definition of intracranial recordings, we characterize the neurophysiological signatures of the intact orbitofrontal cortex in processing information relevant for risky decisions. Local field potentials were recorded from the intact orbitofrontal cortex of patients suffering from drug-refractory partial epilepsy with implanted depth electrodes as they performed a probabilistic reward learning task that required them to associate visual cues with distinct reward probabilities. We observed three successive signals: (i) around 400 ms after cue presentation, the amplitudes of the local field potentials increased with reward probability; (ii) a risk signal emerged during the late phase of reward anticipation and during the outcome phase; and (iii) an experienced value signal appeared at the time of reward delivery. Both the medial and lateral orbitofrontal cortex encoded risk and reward probability while the lateral orbitofrontal cortex played a dominant role in coding experienced value. The present study provides the first evidence from intracranial recordings that the human orbitofrontal cortex codes reward risk both during late reward anticipation and during the outcome phase at a time scale of milliseconds. Our findings offer insights into the rapid mechanisms underlying the ability to learn structural relationships from the environment. © The Author (2016). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Guarantors of Brain. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  13. Intonational speech prosody encoding in the human auditory cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tang, C; Hamilton, L S; Chang, E F

    2017-08-25

    Speakers of all human languages regularly use intonational pitch to convey linguistic meaning, such as to emphasize a particular word. Listeners extract pitch movements from speech and evaluate the shape of intonation contours independent of each speaker's pitch range. We used high-density electrocorticography to record neural population activity directly from the brain surface while participants listened to sentences that varied in intonational pitch contour, phonetic content, and speaker. Cortical activity at single electrodes over the human superior temporal gyrus selectively represented intonation contours. These electrodes were intermixed with, yet functionally distinct from, sites that encoded different information about phonetic features or speaker identity. Furthermore, the representation of intonation contours directly reflected the encoding of speaker-normalized relative pitch but not absolute pitch. Copyright © 2017 The Authors, some rights reserved; exclusive licensee American Association for the Advancement of Science. No claim to original U.S. Government Works.

  14. The Representation of Object Viewpoint in Human Visual Cortex

    OpenAIRE

    Andresen, David R.; Vinberg, Joakim; Grill-Spector, Kalanit

    2008-01-01

    Understanding the nature of object representations in the human brain is critical for understanding the neural basis of invariant object recognition. However, the degree to which object representations are sensitive to object viewpoint is unknown. Using fMRI we employed a parametric approach to examine the sensitivity to object view as a function of rotation (0°–180°), category (animal/vehicle) and fMRI-adaptation paradigm (short or long-lagged). For both categories and fMRI-adaptation paradi...

  15. Timing, timing, timing: Fast decoding of object information from intracranial field potentials in human visual cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Hesheng; Agam, Yigal; Madsen, Joseph R.; Kreiman, Gabriel

    2010-01-01

    Summary The difficulty of visual recognition stems from the need to achieve high selectivity while maintaining robustness to object transformations within hundreds of milliseconds. Theories of visual recognition differ in whether the neuronal circuits invoke recurrent feedback connections or not. The timing of neurophysiological responses in visual cortex plays a key role in distinguishing between bottom-up and top-down theories. Here we quantified at millisecond resolution the amount of visual information conveyed by intracranial field potentials from 912 electrodes in 11 human subjects. We could decode object category information from human visual cortex in single trials as early as 100 ms post-stimulus. Decoding performance was robust to depth rotation and scale changes. The results suggest that physiological activity in the temporal lobe can account for key properties of visual recognition. The fast decoding in single trials is compatible with feed-forward theories and provides strong constraints for computational models of human vision. PMID:19409272

  16. GABAA receptor subunit gene expression in human prefrontal cortex: comparison of schizophrenics and controls

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akbarian, S.; Huntsman, M. M.; Kim, J. J.; Tafazzoli, A.; Potkin, S. G.; Bunney, W. E. Jr; Jones, E. G.; Bloom, F. E. (Principal Investigator)

    1995-01-01

    The prefrontal cortex of schizophrenics is hypoactive and displays changes related to inhibitory, GABAergic neurons, and GABAergic synapses. These changes include decreased levels of glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD), the enzyme for GABA synthesis, upregulation of muscimol binding, and downregulation of benzodiazepine binding to GABAA receptors. Studies in the visual cortex of nonhuman primates have demonstrated that gene expression for GAD and for several GABAA receptor subunit polypeptides is under control of neuronal activity, raising the possibility that similar mechanisms in the hypoactive prefrontal cortex of schizophrenics may explain the abnormalities in GAD and in GABAA receptor regulation. In the present study, which is the first of its type on human cerebral cortex, levels of mRNAs for six GABAA receptor subunits (alpha 1, alpha 2, alpha 5, beta 1, beta 2, gamma 2) and their laminar expression patterns were analyzed in the prefrontal cortex of schizophrenics and matched controls, using in situ hybridization histochemistry and densitometry. Three types of laminar expression pattern were observed: mRNAs for the alpha 1, beta 2, and gamma 2 subunits, which are the predominant receptor subunits expressed in the mature cortex, were expressed at comparatively high levels by cells of all six cortical layers, but most intensely by cells in lower layer III and layer IV. mRNAs for the alpha 2, alpha 5, and beta 1 subunits were expressed at lower levels; alpha 2 and beta 1 were expressed predominantly by cells in layers II, III, and IV; alpha 5 was expressed predominantly in layers IV, V, and VI. There were no significant changes in overall mRNA levels for any of the receptor subunits in the prefrontal cortex of schizophrenics, and the laminar expression pattern of all six receptor subunit mRNAs did not differ between schizophrenics and controls. Because gene expression for GABAA receptor subunits is not consistently altered in the prefrontal cortex of

  17. Intracerebral evidence of rhythm transform in the human auditory cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nozaradan, Sylvie; Mouraux, André; Jonas, Jacques; Colnat-Coulbois, Sophie; Rossion, Bruno; Maillard, Louis

    2017-07-01

    Musical entrainment is shared by all human cultures and the perception of a periodic beat is a cornerstone of this entrainment behavior. Here, we investigated whether beat perception might have its roots in the earliest stages of auditory cortical processing. Local field potentials were recorded from 8 patients implanted with depth-electrodes in Heschl's gyrus and the planum temporale (55 recording sites in total), usually considered as human primary and secondary auditory cortices. Using a frequency-tagging approach, we show that both low-frequency (30 Hz) neural activities in these structures faithfully track auditory rhythms through frequency-locking to the rhythm envelope. A selective gain in amplitude of the response frequency-locked to the beat frequency was observed for the low-frequency activities but not for the high-frequency activities, and was sharper in the planum temporale, especially for the more challenging syncopated rhythm. Hence, this gain process is not systematic in all activities produced in these areas and depends on the complexity of the rhythmic input. Moreover, this gain was disrupted when the rhythm was presented at fast speed, revealing low-pass response properties which could account for the propensity to perceive a beat only within the musical tempo range. Together, these observations show that, even though part of these neural transforms of rhythms could already take place in subcortical auditory processes, the earliest auditory cortical processes shape the neural representation of rhythmic inputs in favor of the emergence of a periodic beat.

  18. Cross-population myelination covariance of human cerebral cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Zhiwei; Zhang, Nanyin

    2017-09-01

    Cross-population covariance of brain morphometric quantities provides a measure of interareal connectivity, as it is believed to be determined by the coordinated neurodevelopment of connected brain regions. Although useful, structural covariance analysis predominantly employed bulky morphological measures with mixed compartments, whereas studies of the structural covariance of any specific subdivisions such as myelin are rare. Characterizing myelination covariance is of interest, as it will reveal connectivity patterns determined by coordinated development of myeloarchitecture between brain regions. Using myelin content MRI maps from the Human Connectome Project, here we showed that the cortical myelination covariance was highly reproducible, and exhibited a brain organization similar to that previously revealed by other connectivity measures. Additionally, the myelination covariance network shared common topological features of human brain networks such as small-worldness. Furthermore, we found that the correlation between myelination covariance and resting-state functional connectivity (RSFC) was uniform within each resting-state network (RSN), but could considerably vary across RSNs. Interestingly, this myelination covariance-RSFC correlation was appreciably stronger in sensory and motor networks than cognitive and polymodal association networks, possibly due to their different circuitry structures. This study has established a new brain connectivity measure specifically related to axons, and this measure can be valuable to investigating coordinated myeloarchitecture development. Hum Brain Mapp 38:4730-4743, 2017. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  19. Saturation in Phosphene Size with Increasing Current Levels Delivered to Human Visual Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bosking, William H; Sun, Ping; Ozker, Muge; Pei, Xiaomei; Foster, Brett L; Beauchamp, Michael S; Yoshor, Daniel

    2017-07-26

    Electrically stimulating early visual cortex results in a visual percept known as a phosphene. Although phosphenes can be evoked by a wide range of electrode sizes and current amplitudes, they are invariably described as small. To better understand this observation, we electrically stimulated 93 electrodes implanted in the visual cortex of 13 human subjects who reported phosphene size while stimulation current was varied. Phosphene size increased as the stimulation current was initially raised above threshold, but then rapidly reached saturation. Phosphene size also depended on the location of the stimulated site, with size increasing with distance from the foveal representation. We developed a model relating phosphene size to the amount of activated cortex and its location within the retinotopic map. First, a sigmoidal curve was used to predict the amount of activated cortex at a given current. Second, the amount of active cortex was converted to degrees of visual angle by multiplying by the inverse cortical magnification factor for that retinotopic location. This simple model accurately predicted phosphene size for a broad range of stimulation currents and cortical locations. The unexpected saturation in phosphene sizes suggests that the functional architecture of cerebral cortex may impose fundamental restrictions on the spread of artificially evoked activity and this may be an important consideration in the design of cortical prosthetic devices. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Understanding the neural basis for phosphenes, the visual percepts created by electrical stimulation of visual cortex, is fundamental to the development of a visual cortical prosthetic. Our experiments in human subjects implanted with electrodes over visual cortex show that it is the activity of a large population of cells spread out across several millimeters of tissue that supports the perception of a phosphene. In addition, we describe an important feature of the production of phosphenes by

  20. Structural and functional analyses of human cerebral cortex using a surface-based atlas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Essen, D. C.; Drury, H. A.

    1997-01-01

    We have analyzed the geometry, geography, and functional organization of human cerebral cortex using surface reconstructions and cortical flat maps of the left and right hemispheres generated from a digital atlas (the Visible Man). The total surface area of the reconstructed Visible Man neocortex is 1570 cm2 (both hemispheres), approximately 70% of which is buried in sulci. By linking the Visible Man cerebrum to the Talairach stereotaxic coordinate space, the locations of activation foci reported in neuroimaging studies can be readily visualized in relation to the cortical surface. The associated spatial uncertainty was empirically shown to have a radius in three dimensions of approximately 10 mm. Application of this approach to studies of visual cortex reveals the overall patterns of activation associated with different aspects of visual function and the relationship of these patterns to topographically organized visual areas. Our analysis supports a distinction between an anterior region in ventral occipito-temporal cortex that is selectively involved in form processing and a more posterior region (in or near areas VP and V4v) involved in both form and color processing. Foci associated with motion processing are mainly concentrated in a region along the occipito-temporal junction, the ventral portion of which overlaps with foci also implicated in form processing. Comparisons between flat maps of human and macaque monkey cerebral cortex indicate significant differences as well as many similarities in the relative sizes and positions of cortical regions known or suspected to be homologous in the two species.

  1. Functional magnetic resonance imaging of the human primary visual cortex during visual stimulation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Miki, Atsushi; Abe, Haruki; Nakajima, Takashi; Fujita, Motoi; Watanabe, Hiroyuki; Kuwabara, Takeo; Naruse, Shoji; Takagi, Mineo.

    1995-01-01

    Signal changes in the human primary visual cortex during visual stimulation were evaluated using non-invasive functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). The experiments were performed on 10 normal human volunteers and 2 patients with homonymous hemianopsia, including one who was recovering from the exacerbation of multiple sclerosis. The visual stimuli were provided by a pattern generator using the checkerboard pattern for determining the visual evoked potential of full-field and hemifield stimulation. In normal volunteers, a signal increase was observed on the bilateral primary visual cortex during the full-field stimulation and on the contra-lateral cortex during hemifield stimulation. In the patient with homonymous hemianopsia after cerebral infarction, the signal change was clearly decreased on the affected side. In the other patient, the one recovering from multiple sclerosis with an almost normal visual field, the fMRI was within normal limits. These results suggest that it is possible to visualize the activation of the visual cortex during visual stimulation, and that there is a possibility of using this test as an objective method of visual field examination. (author)

  2. Developmental changes in GABAergic mechanisms in human visual cortex across the lifespan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joshua G A Pinto

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Functional maturation of visual cortex is linked with dynamic changes in synaptic expression of GABAergic mechanisms. These include setting the excitation-inhibition balance required for experience-dependent plasticity, as well as, intracortical inhibition underlying development and aging of receptive field properties. Animal studies have shown developmental regulation of GABAergic mechanisms in visual cortex. In this study, we show for the first time how these mechanisms develop in the human visual cortex across the lifespan. We used Western blot analysis of postmortem tissue from human primary visual cortex (n=30, range: 20 days to 80 years to quantify expression of 8 pre- and post-synaptic GABAergic markers. We quantified the inhibitory modulating cannabinoid receptor (CB1, GABA vesicular transporter (VGAT, GABA synthesizing enzymes (GAD65/GAD67, GABAA receptor anchoring protein (Gephyrin, and GABAA receptor subunits (GABAA∝1, GABAA∝2, GABAA∝3. We found a complex pattern of changes, many of which were prolonged and continued well into into the teen, young adult, and even older adult years. These included a monotonic increase or decrease (GABAA∝1, GABAA∝2, a biphasic increase then decrease (GAD65, Gephyrin, or multiple increases and decreases (VGAT, CB1 across the lifespan. Comparing the balances between the pre- and post-synaptic markers we found 3 main transitions (early childhood, early teen years, aging when there were rapid switches in the composition of the GABAergic signaling system, indicating that functioning of the GABAergic system must change as the visual cortex develops and ages. Furthermore, these results provide key information for translating therapies developed in animal models into effective treatments for amblyopia in humans.

  3. The bilingual brain: Flexibility and control in the human cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buchweitz, Augusto; Prat, Chantel

    2013-12-01

    The goal of the present review is to discuss recent cognitive neuroscientific findings concerning bilingualism. Three interrelated questions about the bilingual brain are addressed: How are multiple languages represented in the brain? how are languages controlled in the brain? and what are the real-world implications of experience with multiple languages? The review is based on neuroimaging research findings about the nature of bilingual processing, namely, how the brain adapts to accommodate multiple languages in the bilingual brain and to control which language should be used, and when. We also address how this adaptation results in differences observed in the general cognition of bilingual individuals. General implications for models of human learning, plasticity, and cognitive control are discussed.

  4. APP Metabolism Regulates Tau Proteostasis in Human Cerebral Cortex Neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steven Moore

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Accumulation of Aβ peptide fragments of the APP protein and neurofibrillary tangles of the microtubule-associated protein tau are the cellular hallmarks of Alzheimer’s disease (AD. To investigate the relationship between APP metabolism and tau protein levels and phosphorylation, we studied human-stem-cell-derived forebrain neurons with genetic forms of AD, all of which increase the release of pathogenic Aβ peptides. We identified marked increases in intracellular tau in genetic forms of AD that either mutated APP or increased its dosage, suggesting that APP metabolism is coupled to changes in tau proteostasis. Manipulating APP metabolism by β-secretase and γ-secretase inhibition, as well as γ-secretase modulation, results in specific increases and decreases in tau protein levels. These data demonstrate that APP metabolism regulates tau proteostasis and suggest that the relationship between APP processing and tau is not mediated solely through extracellular Aβ signaling to neurons.

  5. The representation of object viewpoint in human visual cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andresen, David R; Vinberg, Joakim; Grill-Spector, Kalanit

    2009-04-01

    Understanding the nature of object representations in the human brain is critical for understanding the neural basis of invariant object recognition. However, the degree to which object representations are sensitive to object viewpoint is unknown. Using fMRI we employed a parametric approach to examine the sensitivity to object view as a function of rotation (0 degrees-180 degrees ), category (animal/vehicle) and fMRI-adaptation paradigm (short or long-lagged). For both categories and fMRI-adaptation paradigms, object-selective regions recovered from adaptation when a rotated view of an object was shown after adaptation to a specific view of that object, suggesting that representations are sensitive to object rotation. However, we found evidence for differential representations across categories and ventral stream regions. Rotation cross-adaptation was larger for animals than vehicles, suggesting higher sensitivity to vehicle than animal rotation, and was largest in the left fusiform/occipito-temporal sulcus (pFUS/OTS), suggesting that this region has low sensitivity to rotation. Moreover, right pFUS/OTS and FFA responded more strongly to front than back views of animals (without adaptation) and rotation cross-adaptation depended both on the level of rotation and the adapting view. This result suggests a prevalence of neurons that prefer frontal views of animals in fusiform regions. Using a computational model of view-tuned neurons, we demonstrate that differential neural view tuning widths and relative distributions of neural-tuned populations in fMRI voxels can explain the fMRI results. Overall, our findings underscore the utility of parametric approaches for studying the neural basis of object invariance and suggest that there is no complete invariance to object view in the human ventral stream.

  6. Human Motor Cortex Functional Changes in Acute Stroke: Gender Effects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vincenzo eDi Lazzaro

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The acute phase of stroke is accompanied by functional changes in the activity and interplay of both hemispheres. In healthy subjects, gender is known to impact the functional brain organization.We investigated whether gender influences also acute stroke functional changes. In thirty-five ischemic stroke patients, we evaluated the excitability of the affected (AH and unaffected hemisphere (UH by measuring resting and active motor threshold and motor-evoked potential amplitude under baseline conditions and after intermittent theta burst stimulation (iTBS of AH. We also computed an index of the excitability balance between the hemispheres, laterality indexes (LI, to evidence hemispheric asymmetry. Active motor threshold differed significantly between AH and UH only in the male group (p=0.004, not in females (p>0.200, and both LIAMT and LIRMT were significantly higher in males than in females (respectively p=0.033 and p=0.042. LTP-like activity induced by iTBS in AH was more frequent in females. Gender influences the functional excitability changes that take place after human stroke and the level of LTP that can be induced by repetitive stimulation. This knowledge is of high value in the attempt of individualizing to different genders any non-invasive stimulation strategy designed to foster stroke recovery.

  7. Human Motor Cortex Functional Changes in Acute Stroke: Gender Effects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Lazzaro, Vincenzo; Pellegrino, Giovanni; Di Pino, Giovanni; Ranieri, Federico; Lotti, Fiorenza; Florio, Lucia; Capone, Fioravante

    2016-01-01

    The acute phase of stroke is accompanied by functional changes in the activity and interplay of both hemispheres. In healthy subjects, gender is known to impact the functional brain organization. We investigated whether gender influences also acute stroke functional changes. In thirty-five ischemic stroke patients, we evaluated the excitability of the affected (AH) and unaffected hemisphere (UH) by measuring resting and active motor threshold (AMT) and motor-evoked potential amplitude under baseline conditions and after intermittent theta burst stimulation (iTBS) of AH. We also computed an index of the excitability balance between the hemispheres, laterality indexes (LI), to evidence hemispheric asymmetry. AMT differed significantly between AH and UH only in the male group (p = 0.004), not in females (p > 0.200), and both LIAMT and LIRMT were significantly higher in males than in females (respectively p = 0.033 and p = 0.042). LTP-like activity induced by iTBS in AH was more frequent in females. Gender influences the functional excitability changes that take place after human stroke and the level of LTP that can be induced by repetitive stimulation. This knowledge is of high value in the attempt of individualizing to different genders any non-invasive stimulation strategy designed to foster stroke recovery. PMID:26858590

  8. APP metabolism regulates tau proteostasis in human cerebral cortex neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Steven; Evans, Lewis D B; Andersson, Therese; Portelius, Erik; Smith, James; Dias, Tatyana B; Saurat, Nathalie; McGlade, Amelia; Kirwan, Peter; Blennow, Kaj; Hardy, John; Zetterberg, Henrik; Livesey, Frederick J

    2015-05-05

    Accumulation of Aβ peptide fragments of the APP protein and neurofibrillary tangles of the microtubule-associated protein tau are the cellular hallmarks of Alzheimer's disease (AD). To investigate the relationship between APP metabolism and tau protein levels and phosphorylation, we studied human-stem-cell-derived forebrain neurons with genetic forms of AD, all of which increase the release of pathogenic Aβ peptides. We identified marked increases in intracellular tau in genetic forms of AD that either mutated APP or increased its dosage, suggesting that APP metabolism is coupled to changes in tau proteostasis. Manipulating APP metabolism by β-secretase and γ-secretase inhibition, as well as γ-secretase modulation, results in specific increases and decreases in tau protein levels. These data demonstrate that APP metabolism regulates tau proteostasis and suggest that the relationship between APP processing and tau is not mediated solely through extracellular Aβ signaling to neurons. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Anodal transcranial direct current stimulation reduces psychophysically measured surround suppression in the human visual cortex.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel P Spiegel

    Full Text Available Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS is a safe, non-invasive technique for transiently modulating the balance of excitation and inhibition within the human brain. It has been reported that anodal tDCS can reduce both GABA mediated inhibition and GABA concentration within the human motor cortex. As GABA mediated inhibition is thought to be a key modulator of plasticity within the adult brain, these findings have broad implications for the future use of tDCS. It is important, therefore, to establish whether tDCS can exert similar effects within non-motor brain areas. The aim of this study was to assess whether anodal tDCS could reduce inhibitory interactions within the human visual cortex. Psychophysical measures of surround suppression were used as an index of inhibition within V1. Overlay suppression, which is thought to originate within the lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN, was also measured as a control. Anodal stimulation of the occipital poles significantly reduced psychophysical surround suppression, but had no effect on overlay suppression. This effect was specific to anodal stimulation as cathodal stimulation had no effect on either measure. These psychophysical results provide the first evidence for tDCS-induced reductions of intracortical inhibition within the human visual cortex.

  10. Task-specific reorganization of the auditory cortex in deaf humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bola, Łukasz; Zimmermann, Maria; Mostowski, Piotr; Jednoróg, Katarzyna; Marchewka, Artur; Rutkowski, Paweł; Szwed, Marcin

    2017-01-24

    The principles that guide large-scale cortical reorganization remain unclear. In the blind, several visual regions preserve their task specificity; ventral visual areas, for example, become engaged in auditory and tactile object-recognition tasks. It remains open whether task-specific reorganization is unique to the visual cortex or, alternatively, whether this kind of plasticity is a general principle applying to other cortical areas. Auditory areas can become recruited for visual and tactile input in the deaf. Although nonhuman data suggest that this reorganization might be task specific, human evidence has been lacking. Here we enrolled 15 deaf and 15 hearing adults into an functional MRI experiment during which they discriminated between temporally complex sequences of stimuli (rhythms). Both deaf and hearing subjects performed the task visually, in the central visual field. In addition, hearing subjects performed the same task in the auditory modality. We found that the visual task robustly activated the auditory cortex in deaf subjects, peaking in the posterior-lateral part of high-level auditory areas. This activation pattern was strikingly similar to the pattern found in hearing subjects performing the auditory version of the task. Although performing the visual task in deaf subjects induced an increase in functional connectivity between the auditory cortex and the dorsal visual cortex, no such effect was found in hearing subjects. We conclude that in deaf humans the high-level auditory cortex switches its input modality from sound to vision but preserves its task-specific activation pattern independent of input modality. Task-specific reorganization thus might be a general principle that guides cortical plasticity in the brain.

  11. Bilateral somatosensory evoked potentials following intermittent theta-burst repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Premji, Azra; Ziluk, Angela; Nelson, Aimee J

    2010-08-05

    Intermittent theta-burst stimulation (iTBS) is a form of repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation that may alter cortical excitability in the primary somatosensory cortex (SI). The present study investigated the effects of iTBS on subcortical and early cortical somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) recorded over left, iTBS stimulated SI and the right-hemisphere non-stimulated SI. SEPs were recorded before and at 5, 15, and 25 minutes following iTBS. Compared to pre-iTBS, the amplitude of cortical potential N20/P25 was significantly increased for 5 minutes from non-stimulated SI and for 15 to 25 minutes from stimulated SI. Subcortical potentials recorded bilaterally remained unaltered following iTBS. We conclude that iTBS increases the cortical excitability of SI bilaterally and does not alter thalamocortical afferent input to SI. ITBS may provide one avenue to induce cortical plasticity in the somatosensory cortex.

  12. The contribution of the human posterior parietal cortex to episodic memory

    OpenAIRE

    Sestieri, Carlo; Shulman, Gordon L.; Corbetta, Maurizio

    2017-01-01

    The posterior parietal cortex (PPC) is traditionally associated with attention, perceptual decision making and sensorimotor transformations, but more recent human neuroimaging studies support an additional role in episodic memory retrieval. In this Opinion article, we present a functional–anatomical model of the involvement of the PPC in memory retrieval. Parietal regions involved in perceptual attention and episodic memory are largely segregated and often show a push–pull relationship, poten...

  13. Plasticity in the Human Visual Cortex: An Ophthalmology-Based Perspective

    OpenAIRE

    Andreia Martins Rosa; Maria Fátima Silva; Sónia Ferreira; Joaquim Murta; Miguel Castelo-Branco

    2013-01-01

    Neuroplasticity refers to the ability of the brain to reorganize the function and structure of its connections in response to changes in the environment. Adult human visual cortex shows several manifestations of plasticity, such as perceptual learning and adaptation, working under the top-down influence of attention. Plasticity results from the interplay of several mechanisms, including the GABAergic system, epigenetic factors, mitochondrial activity, and structural remodeling of synaptic con...

  14. Differences in female and male development of the human cerebral cortex from birth to age 16

    OpenAIRE

    Hanlon, Harriet Wehner

    1994-01-01

    This study compares the development of the human cerebral cortex of 224 girls and 284 boys in a series of cross-sectional analyses as measured by EEG coherence on normal children's brains (longisectional design). Correlations of these EEG readings taken from all brain regions between a mean age of 6 months and 16 years yield measures of synaptic communication. Time series of these measures reflect the changing growth patterns across the 16 years. Time series of mean EE...

  15. Effects of selective attention on the electrophysiological representation of concurrent sounds in the human auditory cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bidet-Caulet, Aurélie; Fischer, Catherine; Besle, Julien; Aguera, Pierre-Emmanuel; Giard, Marie-Helene; Bertrand, Olivier

    2007-08-29

    In noisy environments, we use auditory selective attention to actively ignore distracting sounds and select relevant information, as during a cocktail party to follow one particular conversation. The present electrophysiological study aims at deciphering the spatiotemporal organization of the effect of selective attention on the representation of concurrent sounds in the human auditory cortex. Sound onset asynchrony was manipulated to induce the segregation of two concurrent auditory streams. Each stream consisted of amplitude modulated tones at different carrier and modulation frequencies. Electrophysiological recordings were performed in epileptic patients with pharmacologically resistant partial epilepsy, implanted with depth electrodes in the temporal cortex. Patients were presented with the stimuli while they either performed an auditory distracting task or actively selected one of the two concurrent streams. Selective attention was found to affect steady-state responses in the primary auditory cortex, and transient and sustained evoked responses in secondary auditory areas. The results provide new insights on the neural mechanisms of auditory selective attention: stream selection during sound rivalry would be facilitated not only by enhancing the neural representation of relevant sounds, but also by reducing the representation of irrelevant information in the auditory cortex. Finally, they suggest a specialization of the left hemisphere in the attentional selection of fine-grained acoustic information.

  16. Attention to Color Sharpens Neural Population Tuning via Feedback Processing in the Human Visual Cortex Hierarchy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartsch, Mandy V; Loewe, Kristian; Merkel, Christian; Heinze, Hans-Jochen; Schoenfeld, Mircea A; Tsotsos, John K; Hopf, Jens-Max

    2017-10-25

    Attention can facilitate the selection of elementary object features such as color, orientation, or motion. This is referred to as feature-based attention and it is commonly attributed to a modulation of the gain and tuning of feature-selective units in visual cortex. Although gain mechanisms are well characterized, little is known about the cortical processes underlying the sharpening of feature selectivity. Here, we show with high-resolution magnetoencephalography in human observers (men and women) that sharpened selectivity for a particular color arises from feedback processing in the human visual cortex hierarchy. To assess color selectivity, we analyze the response to a color probe that varies in color distance from an attended color target. We find that attention causes an initial gain enhancement in anterior ventral extrastriate cortex that is coarsely selective for the target color and transitions within ∼100 ms into a sharper tuned profile in more posterior ventral occipital cortex. We conclude that attention sharpens selectivity over time by attenuating the response at lower levels of the cortical hierarchy to color values neighboring the target in color space. These observations support computational models proposing that attention tunes feature selectivity in visual cortex through backward-propagating attenuation of units less tuned to the target. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Whether searching for your car, a particular item of clothing, or just obeying traffic lights, in everyday life, we must select items based on color. But how does attention allow us to select a specific color? Here, we use high spatiotemporal resolution neuromagnetic recordings to examine how color selectivity emerges in the human brain. We find that color selectivity evolves as a coarse to fine process from higher to lower levels within the visual cortex hierarchy. Our observations support computational models proposing that feature selectivity increases over time by attenuating the

  17. Deconstructing white matter connectivity of human amygdala nuclei with thalamus and cortex subdivisions in vivo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abivardi, Aslan; Bach, Dominik R

    2017-08-01

    Structural alterations in long-range amygdala connections are proposed to crucially underlie several neuropsychiatric disorders. While progress has been made in elucidating the function of these connections, our understanding of their structure in humans remains sparse and non-systematic. Harnessing diffusion-weighted imaging and probabilistic tractography in humans, we investigate connections between two main amygdala nucleus groups, thalamic nuclei, and cortex. We first parcellated amygdala into deep (basolateral) and superficial (centrocortical) nucleus groups, and thalamus into six subregions, using previously established protocols based on connectivity. Cortex was parcellated based on T1-weighted images. We found substantial amygdala connections to thalamus, with different patterns for the two amygdala nuclei. Crucially, we describe direct subcortical connections between amygdala and paraventricular thalamus. Different from rodents but similar to non-human primates, these are more pronounced for basolateral than centrocortical amygdala. Substantial white-matter connectivity between amygdala and visual pulvinar is also more pronounced for basolateral amygdala. Furthermore, we establish detailed connectivity profiles for basolateral and centrocortical amygdala to cortical regions. These exhibit cascadic connections with sensory cortices as suggested previously based on tracer methods in non-human animals. We propose that the quantitative connectivity profiles provided here may guide future work on normal and pathological function of human amygdala. Hum Brain Mapp 38:3927-3940, 2017. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2017 The Authors Human Brain Mapping Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  18. The motor cortex drives the muscles during walking in human subjects

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Petersen, Tue Hvass; Willerslev-Olsen, Maria; Conway, B A

    2012-01-01

    Indirect evidence that the motor cortex and the corticospinal tract contribute to the control of walking in human subjects has been provided in previous studies. In the present study we used coherence analysis of the coupling between EEG and EMG from active leg muscles during human walking...... area and EMG from the anterior tibial muscle was found in the frequency band 24–40 Hz prior to heel strike during the swing phase of walking. This signifies that rhythmic cortical activity in the 24–40 Hz frequency band is transmitted via the corticospinal tract to the active muscles during walking...

  19. Neuromodulatory neurotransmitters influence LTP-like plasticity in human cortex: a pharmaco-TMS study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Korchounov, Alexei; Ziemann, Ulf

    2011-08-01

    Long-term potentiation (LTP) of synaptic efficacy is considered a fundamental mechanism of learning and memory. At the cellular level a large body of evidence demonstrated that the major neuromodulatory neurotransmitters dopamine (DA), norepinephrine (NE), and acetylcholine (ACh) influence LTP magnitude. Noninvasive brain stimulation protocols provide the opportunity to study LTP-like plasticity at the systems level of human cortex. Here we applied paired associative stimulation (PAS) to induce LTP-like plasticity in the primary motor cortex of eight healthy subjects. In a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, crossover design, the acute effects of a single oral dose of the neuromodulatory drugs cabergoline (DA agonist), haloperidol (DA antagonist), methylphenidate (indirect NE agonist), prazosine (NE antagonist), tacrine (ACh agonist), and biperiden (ACh antagonist) on PAS-induced LTP-like plasticity were examined. The antagonists haloperidol, prazosine, and biperiden depressed significantly the PAS-induced LTP-like plasticity observed under placebo, whereas the agonists cabergoline, methylphenidate, and tacrine had no effect. Findings demonstrate that antagonists in major neuromodulatory neurotransmitter systems suppress LTP-like plasticity at the systems level of human cortex, in accord with evidence of their modulating action of LTP at the cellular level. This provides further supportive evidence for the known detrimental effects of these drugs on LTP-dependent mechanisms such as learning and memory.

  20. Attentional load modulates responses of human primary visual cortex to invisible stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bahrami, Bahador; Lavie, Nilli; Rees, Geraint

    2007-03-20

    Visual neuroscience has long sought to determine the extent to which stimulus-evoked activity in visual cortex depends on attention and awareness. Some influential theories of consciousness maintain that the allocation of attention is restricted to conscious representations [1, 2]. However, in the load theory of attention [3], competition between task-relevant and task-irrelevant stimuli for limited-capacity attention does not depend on conscious perception of the irrelevant stimuli. The critical test is whether the level of attentional load in a relevant task would determine unconscious neural processing of invisible stimuli. Human participants were scanned with high-field fMRI while they performed a foveal task of low or high attentional load. Irrelevant, invisible monocular stimuli were simultaneously presented peripherally and were continuously suppressed by a flashing mask in the other eye [4]. Attentional load in the foveal task strongly modulated retinotopic activity evoked in primary visual cortex (V1) by the invisible stimuli. Contrary to traditional views [1, 2, 5, 6], we found that availability of attentional capacity determines neural representations related to unconscious processing of continuously suppressed stimuli in human primary visual cortex. Spillover of attention to cortical representations of invisible stimuli (under low load) cannot be a sufficient condition for their awareness.

  1. Development and function of human cerebral cortex neural networks from pluripotent stem cells in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirwan, Peter; Turner-Bridger, Benita; Peter, Manuel; Momoh, Ayiba; Arambepola, Devika; Robinson, Hugh P C; Livesey, Frederick J

    2015-09-15

    A key aspect of nervous system development, including that of the cerebral cortex, is the formation of higher-order neural networks. Developing neural networks undergo several phases with distinct activity patterns in vivo, which are thought to prune and fine-tune network connectivity. We report here that human pluripotent stem cell (hPSC)-derived cerebral cortex neurons form large-scale networks that reflect those found in the developing cerebral cortex in vivo. Synchronised oscillatory networks develop in a highly stereotyped pattern over several weeks in culture. An initial phase of increasing frequency of oscillations is followed by a phase of decreasing frequency, before giving rise to non-synchronous, ordered activity patterns. hPSC-derived cortical neural networks are excitatory, driven by activation of AMPA- and NMDA-type glutamate receptors, and can undergo NMDA-receptor-mediated plasticity. Investigating single neuron connectivity within PSC-derived cultures, using rabies-based trans-synaptic tracing, we found two broad classes of neuronal connectivity: most neurons have small numbers (40). These data demonstrate that the formation of hPSC-derived cortical networks mimics in vivo cortical network development and function, demonstrating the utility of in vitro systems for mechanistic studies of human forebrain neural network biology. © 2015. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  2. Functional connection between posterior superior temporal gyrus and ventrolateral prefrontal cortex in human.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garell, P C; Bakken, H; Greenlee, J D W; Volkov, I; Reale, R A; Oya, H; Kawasaki, H; Howard, M A; Brugge, J F

    2013-10-01

    The connection between auditory fields of the temporal lobe and prefrontal cortex has been well characterized in nonhuman primates. Little is known of temporofrontal connectivity in humans, however, due largely to the fact that invasive experimental approaches used so successfully to trace anatomical pathways in laboratory animals cannot be used in humans. Instead, we used a functional tract-tracing method in 12 neurosurgical patients with multicontact electrode arrays chronically implanted over the left (n = 7) or right (n = 5) perisylvian temporal auditory cortex (area PLST) and the ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (VLPFC) of the inferior frontal gyrus (IFG) for diagnosis and treatment of medically intractable epilepsy. Area PLST was identified by the distribution of average auditory-evoked potentials obtained in response to simple and complex sounds. The same sounds evoked little if there is any activity in VLPFC. A single bipolar electrical pulse (0.2 ms, charge-balanced) applied between contacts within physiologically identified PLST resulted in polyphasic evoked potentials clustered in VLPFC, with greatest activation being in pars triangularis of the IFG. The average peak latency of the earliest negative deflection of the evoked potential on VLPFC was 13.48 ms (range: 9.0-18.5 ms), providing evidence for a rapidly conducting pathway between area PLST and VLPFC.

  3. Distinct Oscillatory Frequencies Underlie Excitability of Human Occipital and Parietal Cortex.

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    Samaha, Jason; Gosseries, Olivia; Postle, Bradley R

    2017-03-15

    Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) of human occipital and posterior parietal cortex can give rise to visual sensations called phosphenes. We used near-threshold TMS with concurrent EEG recordings to measure how oscillatory brain dynamics covary, on single trials, with the perception of phosphenes after occipital and parietal TMS. Prestimulus power and phase, predominantly in the alpha band (8-13 Hz), predicted occipital TMS phosphenes, whereas higher-frequency beta-band (13-20 Hz) power (but not phase) predicted parietal TMS phosphenes. TMS-evoked responses related to phosphene perception were similar across stimulation sites and were characterized by an early (200 ms) posterior negativity and a later (>300 ms) parietal positivity in the time domain and an increase in low-frequency (∼5-7 Hz) power followed by a broadband decrease in alpha/beta power in the time-frequency domain. These correlates of phosphene perception closely resemble known electrophysiological correlates of conscious perception of near-threshold visual stimuli. The regionally differential pattern of prestimulus predictors of phosphene perception suggests that distinct frequencies may reflect cortical excitability in occipital versus posterior parietal cortex, calling into question the broader assumption that the alpha rhythm may serve as a general index of cortical excitability. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Alpha-band oscillations are thought to reflect cortical excitability and are therefore ascribed an important role in gating information transmission across cortex. We probed cortical excitability directly in human occipital and parietal cortex and observed that, whereas alpha-band dynamics indeed reflect excitability of occipital areas, beta-band activity was most predictive of parietal cortex excitability. Differences in the state of cortical excitability predicted perceptual outcomes (phosphenes), which were manifest in both early and late patterns of evoked activity, revealing the time

  4. The basis of orientation decoding in human primary visual cortex: fine- or coarse-scale biases?

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    Maloney, Ryan T

    2015-01-01

    Orientation signals in human primary visual cortex (V1) can be reliably decoded from the multivariate pattern of activity as measured with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). The precise underlying source of these decoded signals (whether by orientation biases at a fine or coarse scale in cortex) remains a matter of some controversy, however. Freeman and colleagues (J Neurosci 33: 19695-19703, 2013) recently showed that the accuracy of decoding of spiral patterns in V1 can be predicted by a voxel's preferred spatial position (the population receptive field) and its coarse orientation preference, suggesting that coarse-scale biases are sufficient for orientation decoding. Whether they are also necessary for decoding remains an open question, and one with implications for the broader interpretation of multivariate decoding results in fMRI studies. Copyright © 2015 the American Physiological Society.

  5. Neural representations of social status hierarchy in human inferior parietal cortex.

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    Chiao, Joan Y; Harada, Tokiko; Oby, Emily R; Li, Zhang; Parrish, Todd; Bridge, Donna J

    2009-01-01

    Mental representations of social status hierarchy share properties with that of numbers. Previous neuroimaging studies have shown that the neural representation of numerical magnitude lies within a network of regions within inferior parietal cortex. However the neural basis of social status hierarchy remains unknown. Using fMRI, we studied subjects while they compared social status magnitude of people, objects and symbols, as well as numerical magnitude. Both social status and number comparisons recruited bilateral intraparietal sulci. We also observed a semantic distance effect whereby neural activity within bilateral intraparietal sulci increased for semantically close relative to far numerical and social status comparisons. These results demonstrate that social status and number comparisons recruit distinct and overlapping neuronal representations within human inferior parietal cortex.

  6. Integration of Visual and Proprioceptive Limb Position Information in Human Posterior Parietal, Premotor, and Extrastriate Cortex.

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    Limanowski, Jakub; Blankenburg, Felix

    2016-03-02

    The brain constructs a flexible representation of the body from multisensory information. Previous work on monkeys suggests that the posterior parietal cortex (PPC) and ventral premotor cortex (PMv) represent the position of the upper limbs based on visual and proprioceptive information. Human experiments on the rubber hand illusion implicate similar regions, but since such experiments rely on additional visuo-tactile interactions, they cannot isolate visuo-proprioceptive integration. Here, we independently manipulated the position (palm or back facing) of passive human participants' unseen arm and of a photorealistic virtual 3D arm. Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) revealed that matching visual and proprioceptive information about arm position engaged the PPC, PMv, and the body-selective extrastriate body area (EBA); activity in the PMv moreover reflected interindividual differences in congruent arm ownership. Further, the PPC, PMv, and EBA increased their coupling with the primary visual cortex during congruent visuo-proprioceptive position information. These results suggest that human PPC, PMv, and EBA evaluate visual and proprioceptive position information and, under sufficient cross-modal congruence, integrate it into a multisensory representation of the upper limb in space. The position of our limbs in space constantly changes, yet the brain manages to represent limb position accurately by combining information from vision and proprioception. Electrophysiological recordings in monkeys have revealed neurons in the posterior parietal and premotor cortices that seem to implement and update such a multisensory limb representation, but this has been difficult to demonstrate in humans. Our fMRI experiment shows that human posterior parietal, premotor, and body-selective visual brain areas respond preferentially to a virtual arm seen in a position corresponding to one's unseen hidden arm, while increasing their communication with regions conveying visual

  7. Genes expressed in specific areas of the human fetal cerebral cortex display distinct patterns of evolution.

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    Nelle Lambert

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available The developmental mechanisms through which the cerebral cortex increased in size and complexity during primate evolution are essentially unknown. To uncover genetic networks active in the developing cerebral cortex, we combined three-dimensional reconstruction of human fetal brains at midgestation and whole genome expression profiling. This novel approach enabled transcriptional characterization of neurons from accurately defined cortical regions containing presumptive Broca and Wernicke language areas, as well as surrounding associative areas. We identified hundreds of genes displaying differential expression between the two regions, but no significant difference in gene expression between left and right hemispheres. Validation by qRTPCR and in situ hybridization confirmed the robustness of our approach and revealed novel patterns of area- and layer-specific expression throughout the developing cortex. Genes differentially expressed between cortical areas were significantly associated with fast-evolving non-coding sequences harboring human-specific substitutions that could lead to divergence in their repertoires of transcription factor binding sites. Strikingly, while some of these sequences were accelerated in the human lineage only, many others were accelerated in chimpanzee and/or mouse lineages, indicating that genes important for cortical development may be particularly prone to changes in transcriptional regulation across mammals. Genes differentially expressed between cortical regions were also enriched for transcriptional targets of FoxP2, a key gene for the acquisition of language abilities in humans. Our findings point to a subset of genes with a unique combination of cortical areal expression and evolutionary patterns, suggesting that they play important roles in the transcriptional network underlying human-specific neural traits.

  8. Low Doses of Ethanol Enhance LTD-like Plasticity in Human Motor Cortex.

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    Fuhl, Anna; Müller-Dahlhaus, Florian; Lücke, Caroline; Toennes, Stefan W; Ziemann, Ulf

    2015-12-01

    Humans liberally use ethanol for its facilitating effects on social interactions but its effects on central nervous system function remain underexplored. We have recently described that very low doses of ethanol abolish long-term potentiation (LTP)-like plasticity in human cortex, most likely through enhancement of tonic inhibition [Lücke et al, 2014, Neuropsychopharmacology 39:1508-18]. Here, we studied the effects of low-dose ethanol on long-term depression (LTD)-like plasticity. LTD-like plasticity was induced in human motor cortex by paired associative transcranial magnetic stimulation (PASLTD), and measured as decreases of motor evoked potential input-output curve (IO-curve). In addition, sedation was measured by decreases in saccade peak velocity (SPV). Ethanol in two low doses (EtOH<10mM, EtOH<20mM) was compared to single oral doses of alprazolam (APZ, 1mg) a classical benzodiazepine, and zolpidem (ZLP, 10 mg), a non-benzodiazepine hypnotic, in a double-blinded randomized placebo-controlled crossover design in ten healthy human subjects. EtOH<10mM and EtOH<20mM but not APZ or ZLP enhanced the PASLTD-induced LTD-like plasticity, while APZ and ZLP but not EtOH<10mM or EtOH<20mM decreased SPV. Non-sedating low doses of ethanol, easily reached during social drinking, enhance LTD-like plasticity in human cortex. This effect is most likely explained by the activation of extrasynaptic α4-subunit containing gamma-aminobutyric type A receptors by low-dose EtOH, resulting in increased tonic inhibition. Findings may stimulate cellular research on the role of tonic inhibition in regulating excitability and plasticity of cortical neuronal networks.

  9. Phantom somatosensory evoked potentials following selective intraneural electrical stimulation in two amputees.

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    Granata, Giuseppe; Di Iorio, Riccardo; Romanello, Roberto; Iodice, Francesco; Raspopovic, Stanisa; Petrini, Francesco; Strauss, Ivo; Valle, Giacomo; Stieglitz, Thomas; Čvančara, Paul; Andreu, David; Divoux, Jean-Louis; Guiraud, David; Wauters, Loic; Hiairrassary, Arthur; Jensen, Winnie; Micera, Silvestro; Rossini, Paolo Maria

    2018-06-01

    The aim of the paper is to objectively demonstrate that amputees implanted with intraneural interfaces are truly able to feel a sensation in the phantom hand by recording "phantom" somatosensory evoked potentials from the corresponding brain areas. We implanted four transverse intrafascicular multichannel electrodes, available with percutaneous connections to a multichannel electrical stimulator, in the median and ulnar nerves of two left trans-radial amputees. Two channels of the implants that were able to elicit sensations during intraneural nerve stimulation were chosen, in both patients, for recording somatosensory evoked potentials. We recorded reproducible evoked responses by stimulating the median and the ulnar nerves in both cases. Latencies were in accordance with the arrival of somatosensory information to the primary somatosensory cortex. Our results provide evidence that sensations generated by intraneural stimulation are truly perceived by amputees and located in the phantom hand. Moreover, our results strongly suggest that sensations perceived in different parts of the phantom hand result in different evoked responses. Somatosensory evoked potentials obtained by selective intraneural electrical stimulation in amputee patients are a useful tool to provide an objective demonstration of somatosensory feedback in new generation bidirectional prostheses. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  10. Reduction of pain sensitivity after somatosensory therapy in adults with cerebral palsy

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    Inmaculada eRiquelme

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Objective. Pain and deficits in somatosensory processing seem to play a relevant role in cerebral palsy (CP. Rehabilitation techniques based on neuroplasticity mechanisms may induce powerful changes in the organization of the primary somatosensory cortex and have been proved to reduce levels of pain and discomfort in neurological pathologies. However, little is known about the efficacy of such interventions for pain sensitivity in CP individuals. Methods. Adults with cerebral palsy participated in the study and were randomly assigned to the intervention (n=17 or the control group (n=20. The intervention group received a somatosensory therapy including 4 types of exercises (touch, proprioception, vibration, and stereognosis. All participants were asked to continue their standardized motor therapy during the study period. Several somatosensory (pain and touch thresholds, stereognosis, propioception, texture recognition and motor parameters (fine motor skills were assessed before, immediately after and three months after the therapy (follow-up. Results. Participants of the intervention group showed a significant reduction on pain sensitivity after treatment and at follow-up after three months, whereas participants in the control group displayed increasing pain sensitivity over time. No improvements were found on touch sensitivity, proprioception, texture recognition or fine motor skills. Conclusions. Data suggest the possibility that somatosensory therapy was effective in eliciting changes in central somatosensory processing. This hypothesis may have implications for future neuromodulatory treatment of pain complaints in children and adults with cerebral palsy.

  11. Dynamic expression of calretinin in embryonic and early fetal human cortex

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    Miriam eGonzalez-Gomez

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Calretinin (CR is one of the earliest neurochemical markers in human corticogenesis. In embryos from Carnegie stages (CS 17 to 23, calbindin (CB and CR stain opposite poles of the incipient cortex suggesting early regionalization: CB marks the neuroepithelium of the medial boundary of the cortex with the choroid plexus (cortical hem. By contrast, CR is confined to the subventricular zone (SVZ of the lateral and caudal ganglionic eminences at the pallial-subpallial boundary (PSB, or antihem, from where CR+/Tbr1- neurons migrate toward piriform cortex and amygdala as a component of the lateral cortical stream. At CS 19, columns of CR+ cells arise in the rostral cortex, and contribute at CS 20 to the monolayer of horizontal Tbr1+/CR+ and GAD+ cells in the preplate. At CS 21, the pioneer cortical plate appears as a radial aggregation of CR+/Tbr1+ neurons, which cover the entire future neocortex and extend the first corticofugal axons. CR expression in early human corticogenesis is thus not restricted to interneurons, but is also present in the first excitatory projection neurons of the cortex. At CS 21/22, the cortical plate is established following a lateral to medial gradient, when Tbr1+/CR- neurons settle within the pioneer cortical plate, and thus separate superficial and deep pioneer neurons. CR+ pioneer neurons disappear shortly after the formation of the cortical plate. Reelin+ Cajal-Retzius cells begin to express CR around CS21 (7/8 PCW. At CS 21-23, the CR+ SVZ at the PSB is the source of CR+ interneurons migrating into the cortical SVZ. In turn, CB+ interneurons migrate from the subpallium into the intermediate zone following the fibers of the internal capsule. Early CR+ and CB+ interneurons thus have different origins and migratory routes. CR+ cell populations in the embryonic telencephalon take part in a complex sequence of events not analyzed so far in other mammalian species, which may represent a distinctive trait of the initial steps

  12. Dopamine release in human striatum induced by repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation over dorsolateral prefrontal cortex

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    Cho, Sang Soo; Yoon, Eun Jin; Kim, Yu Kyeong; Lee, Won Woo; Kim, Sang Eun [Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seoul (Korea, Republic of)

    2005-07-01

    Animal study suggests that prefrontal cortex plays an important Animal studies suggest that prefrontal cortex plays an important role in the modulation of dopamine (DA) release in subcortical areas. However, little is known about the relationship between DA release and prefrontal activation in human. We investigated whether repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) over left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) influences DA release in human striatum with SPECT measurements of striatal binding of [123I)iodobenzamide (IBZM), a DA D2 receptor radioligand that is sensitive to endogenous DA. Five healthy male volunteers (age, 25{+-}2 yr) were studied with brain [123I]IBZM SPECT under three conditions (resting, Sham stimulation, and active rTMS over left DLPFC), while receiving a bolus plus constant infusion of [123I]IBZM DLPFC was defined as a 6 cm anterior and 1cm lateral from the primary motor cortex. rTMS session consisted of three blocks, in each block, 15 trains of 2 see duration were delivered with 10 Hz stimulation frequency, 100% motor threshold, and between-train intervals of 10 sec. Striatal V3', calculated as (striatal - occipital) / occipital activity ratio, was measured under equilibrium condition, at baseline and after sham and active rTMS. Sham stimulation did not affect striatal V3'. rTMS over DLPFC induced reduction of V3' in the ipsilateral and contralateral striatum by 9.7% {+-} 1.3% and 10.6% {+-} 3.2%, respectively, compared with sham procedures (P < 0.01 and P < 0.01, respectively), indicating striatal DA release elicited by rTMS over DLPFC. V3' reduction in the ipsilateral caudate nucleus was greater than that in the contralateral caudate nucleus (9.9% {+-} 4.5% vs. 6.6% {+-} 3.1%, P < 0.05). These data demonstrate DA release in human striatum induced by rTMS over DLPFC, supporting that cortico-striatal fibers originating in prefrontal cortex are involved in local DA release.

  13. Dopamine release in human striatum induced by repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation over dorsolateral prefrontal cortex

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cho, Sang Soo; Yoon, Eun Jin; Kim, Yu Kyeong; Lee, Won Woo; Kim, Sang Eun

    2005-01-01

    Animal study suggests that prefrontal cortex plays an important Animal studies suggest that prefrontal cortex plays an important role in the modulation of dopamine (DA) release in subcortical areas. However, little is known about the relationship between DA release and prefrontal activation in human. We investigated whether repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) over left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) influences DA release in human striatum with SPECT measurements of striatal binding of [123I)iodobenzamide (IBZM), a DA D2 receptor radioligand that is sensitive to endogenous DA. Five healthy male volunteers (age, 25±2 yr) were studied with brain [123I]IBZM SPECT under three conditions (resting, Sham stimulation, and active rTMS over left DLPFC), while receiving a bolus plus constant infusion of [123I]IBZM DLPFC was defined as a 6 cm anterior and 1cm lateral from the primary motor cortex. rTMS session consisted of three blocks, in each block, 15 trains of 2 see duration were delivered with 10 Hz stimulation frequency, 100% motor threshold, and between-train intervals of 10 sec. Striatal V3', calculated as (striatal - occipital) / occipital activity ratio, was measured under equilibrium condition, at baseline and after sham and active rTMS. Sham stimulation did not affect striatal V3'. rTMS over DLPFC induced reduction of V3' in the ipsilateral and contralateral striatum by 9.7% ± 1.3% and 10.6% ± 3.2%, respectively, compared with sham procedures (P < 0.01 and P < 0.01, respectively), indicating striatal DA release elicited by rTMS over DLPFC. V3' reduction in the ipsilateral caudate nucleus was greater than that in the contralateral caudate nucleus (9.9% ± 4.5% vs. 6.6% ± 3.1%, P < 0.05). These data demonstrate DA release in human striatum induced by rTMS over DLPFC, supporting that cortico-striatal fibers originating in prefrontal cortex are involved in local DA release

  14. Plasticity resembling spike-timing dependent synaptic plasticity: the evidence in human cortex

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    Florian Müller-Dahlhaus

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Spike-timing dependent plasticity (STDP has been studied extensively in a variety of animal models during the past decade but whether it can be studied at the systems level of the human cortex has been a matter of debate. Only recently newly developed non-invasive brain stimulation techniques such as transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS have made it possible to induce and assess timing dependent plasticity in conscious human subjects. This review will present a critical synopsis of these experiments, which suggest that several of the principal characteristics and molecular mechanisms of TMS-induced plasticity correspond to those of STDP as studied at a cellular level. TMS combined with a second phasic stimulation modality can induce bidirectional long-lasting changes in the excitability of the stimulated cortex, whose polarity depends on the order of the associated stimulus-evoked events within a critical time window of tens of milliseconds. Pharmacological evidence suggests an NMDA receptor mediated form of synaptic plasticity. Studies in human motor cortex demonstrated that motor learning significantly modulates TMS-induced timing dependent plasticity, and, conversely, may be modulated bidirectionally by prior TMS-induced plasticity, providing circumstantial evidence that long-term potentiation-like mechanisms may be involved in motor learning. In summary, convergent evidence is being accumulated for the contention that it is now possible to induce STDP-like changes in the intact human central nervous system by means of TMS to study and interfere with synaptic plasticity in neural circuits in the context of behaviour such as learning and memory.

  15. Parcellation of the human orbitofrontal cortex based on gray matter volume covariance.

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    Liu, Huaigui; Qin, Wen; Qi, Haotian; Jiang, Tianzi; Yu, Chunshui

    2015-02-01

    The human orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) is an enigmatic brain region that cannot be parcellated reliably using diffusional and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) because there is signal dropout that results from an inherent defect in imaging techniques. We hypothesise that the OFC can be reliably parcellated into subregions based on gray matter volume (GMV) covariance patterns that are derived from artefact-free structural images. A total of 321 healthy young subjects were examined by high-resolution structural MRI. The OFC was parcellated into subregions-based GMV covariance patterns; and then sex and laterality differences in GMV covariance pattern of each OFC subregion were compared. The human OFC was parcellated into the anterior (OFCa), medial (OFCm), posterior (OFCp), intermediate (OFCi), and lateral (OFCl) subregions. This parcellation scheme was validated by the same analyses of the left OFC and the bilateral OFCs in male and female subjects. Both visual observation and quantitative comparisons indicated a unique GMV covariance pattern for each OFC subregion. These OFC subregions mainly covaried with the prefrontal and temporal cortices, cingulate cortex and amygdala. In addition, GMV correlations of most OFC subregions were similar across sex and laterality except for significant laterality difference in the OFCl. The right OFCl had stronger GMV correlation with the right inferior frontal cortex. Using high-resolution structural images, we established a reliable parcellation scheme for the human OFC, which may provide an in vivo guide for subregion-level studies of this region and improve our understanding of the human OFC at subregional levels. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  16. Investigation of human frontal cortex under noxious thermal stimulation of temporo-mandibular joint using functional near infrared spectroscopy

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    Yennu, Amarnath; Rawat, Rohit; Manry, Michael T.; Gatchel, Robert; Liu, Hanli

    2013-03-01

    According to American Academy of Orofacial Pain, 75% of the U.S. population experiences painful symptoms of temporo-mandibular joint and muscle disorder (TMJMD) during their lifetime. Thus, objective assessment of pain is crucial for efficient pain management. We used near infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) as a tool to explore hemodynamic responses in the frontal cortex to noxious thermal stimulation of temporomadibular joint (TMJ). NIRS experiments were performed on 9 healthy volunteers under both low pain stimulation (LPS) and high pain stimulation (HPS), using a temperature-controlled thermal stimulator. To induce thermal pain, a 16X16 mm2 thermode was strapped onto the right TMJ of each subject. Initially, subjects were asked to rate perceived pain on a scale of 0 to 10 for the temperatures from 41°C to 47°C. For the NIRS measurement, two magnitudes of temperatures, one rated as 3 and another rated as 7, were chosen as LPS and HPS, respectively. By analyzing the temporal profiles of changes in oxy-hemoglobin concentration (HbO) using cluster-based statistical tests, we were able to identify several regions of interest (ROI), (e.g., secondary somatosensory cortex and prefrontal cortex), where significant differences (ppain, a neural-network-based classification algorithm was used. With leave-one-out cross validation from 9 subjects, the two levels of pain were identified with 100% mean sensitivity, 98% mean specificity and 99% mean accuracy to high pain. From the receiver operating characteristics curve, 0.99 mean area under curve was observed.

  17. Cortical oscillations in auditory perception and speech: evidence for two temporal windows in human auditory cortex

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    Huan eLuo

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Natural sounds, including vocal communication sounds, contain critical information at multiple time scales. Two essential temporal modulation rates in speech have been argued to be in the low gamma band (~20-80 ms duration information and the theta band (~150-300 ms, corresponding to segmental and syllabic modulation rates, respectively. On one hypothesis, auditory cortex implements temporal integration using time constants closely related to these values. The neural correlates of a proposed dual temporal window mechanism in human auditory cortex remain poorly understood. We recorded MEG responses from participants listening to non-speech auditory stimuli with different temporal structures, created by concatenating frequency-modulated segments of varied segment durations. We show that these non-speech stimuli with temporal structure matching speech-relevant scales (~25 ms and ~200 ms elicit reliable phase tracking in the corresponding associated oscillatory frequencies (low gamma and theta bands. In contrast, stimuli with non-matching temporal structure do not. Furthermore, the topography of theta band phase tracking shows rightward lateralization while gamma band phase tracking occurs bilaterally. The results support the hypothesis that there exists multi-time resolution processing in cortex on discontinuous scales and provide evidence for an asymmetric organization of temporal analysis (asymmetrical sampling in time, AST. The data argue for a macroscopic-level neural mechanism underlying multi-time resolution processing: the sliding and resetting of intrinsic temporal windows on privileged time scales.

  18. Dissociable contributions of the human amygdala and orbitofrontal cortex to incentive motivation and goal selection.

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    Arana, F Sergio; Parkinson, John A; Hinton, Elanor; Holland, Anthony J; Owen, Adrian M; Roberts, Angela C

    2003-10-22

    Theories of incentive motivation attempt to capture the way in which objects and events in the world can acquire high motivational value and drive behavior, even in the absence of a clear biological need. In addition, for an individual to select the most appropriate goal, the incentive values of competing desirable objects need to be defined and compared. The present study examined the neural substrates by which appetitive incentive value influences prospective goal selection, using positron emission tomographic neuroimaging in humans. Sated subjects were shown a series of restaurant menus that varied in incentive value, specifically tailored for each individual, and in half the trials, were asked to make a selection from the menu. The amygdala was activated by high-incentive menus regardless of whether a choice was required. Indeed, activity in this region varied as a function of individual subjective ratings of incentive value. In contrast, distinct regions of the orbitofrontal cortex were recruited both during incentive judgments and goal selection. Activity in the medial orbital cortex showed a greater response to high-incentive menus and when making a choice, with the latter activity also correlating with subjective ratings of difficulty. Lateral orbitofrontal activity was observed selectively when participants had to suppress responses to alternative desirable items to select their most preferred. Taken together, these data highlight the differential contribution of the amygdala and regions within the orbitofrontal cortex in a neural system underlying the selection of goals based on the prospective incentive value of stimuli, over and above homeostatic influences.

  19. Robust selectivity to two-object images in human visual cortex

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    Agam, Yigal; Liu, Hesheng; Papanastassiou, Alexander; Buia, Calin; Golby, Alexandra J.; Madsen, Joseph R.; Kreiman, Gabriel

    2010-01-01

    SUMMARY We can recognize objects in a fraction of a second in spite of the presence of other objects [1–3]. The responses in macaque areas V4 and inferior temporal cortex [4–15] to a neuron’s preferred stimuli are typically suppressed by the addition of a second object within the receptive field (see however [16, 17]). How can this suppression be reconciled with rapid visual recognition in complex scenes? One option is that certain “special categories” are unaffected by other objects [18] but this leaves the problem unsolved for other categories. Another possibility is that serial attentional shifts help ameliorate the problem of distractor objects [19–21]. Yet, psychophysical studies [1–3], scalp recordings [1] and neurophysiological recordings [14, 16, 22–24], suggest that the initial sweep of visual processing contains a significant amount of information. We recorded intracranial field potentials in human visual cortex during presentation of flashes of two-object images. Visual selectivity from temporal cortex during the initial ~200 ms was largely robust to the presence of other objects. We could train linear decoders on the responses to isolated objects and decode information in two-object images. These observations are compatible with parallel, hierarchical and feed-forward theories of rapid visual recognition [25] and may provide a neural substrate to begin to unravel rapid recognition in natural scenes. PMID:20417105

  20. Modulation of Somatosensory Alpha Rhythm by Transcranial Alternating Current Stimulation at Mu-Frequency

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    Christopher Gundlach

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Transcranial alternating current stimulation (tACS is emerging as an interventional tool to modulate different functions of the brain, potentially by interacting with intrinsic ongoing neuronal oscillations. Functionally different intrinsic alpha oscillations are found throughout the cortex. Yet it remains unclear whether tACS is capable of specifically modulating the somatosensory mu-rhythm in amplitude.Objectives: We used tACS to modulate mu-alpha oscillations in amplitude. When compared to sham stimulation we expected a modulation of mu-alpha oscillations but not visual alpha oscillations by tACS.Methods: Individual mu-alpha frequencies were determined in 25 participants. Subsequently, blocks of tACS with individual mu-alpha frequency and sham stimulation were applied over primary somatosensory cortex (SI. Electroencephalogram (EEG was recorded before and after either stimulation or sham. Modulations of mu-alpha and, for control, visual alpha amplitudes were then compared between tACS and sham.Results: Somatosensory mu-alpha oscillations decreased in amplitude after tACS was applied at participants’ individual mu-alpha frequency. No changes in amplitude were observed for sham stimulation. Furthermore, visual alpha oscillations were not affected by tACS or sham, respectively.Conclusion: Our results demonstrate the capability of tACS to specifically modulate the targeted somatosensory mu-rhythm when the tACS frequency is tuned to the individual endogenous rhythm and applied over somatosensory areas. Our results are in contrast to previously reported amplitude increases of visual alpha oscillations induced by tACS applied over visual cortex. Our results may point to a specific interaction between our stimulation protocol and the functional architecture of the somatosensory system.

  1. Top-down modulation of human early visual cortex after stimulus offset supports successful postcued report.

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    Sergent, Claire; Ruff, Christian C; Barbot, Antoine; Driver, Jon; Rees, Geraint

    2011-08-01

    Modulations of sensory processing in early visual areas are thought to play an important role in conscious perception. To date, most empirical studies focused on effects occurring before or during visual presentation. By contrast, several emerging theories postulate that sensory processing and conscious visual perception may also crucially depend on late top-down influences, potentially arising after a visual display. To provide a direct test of this, we performed an fMRI study using a postcued report procedure. The ability to report a target at a specific spatial location in a visual display can be enhanced behaviorally by symbolic auditory postcues presented shortly after that display. Here we showed that such auditory postcues can enhance target-specific signals in early human visual cortex (V1 and V2). For postcues presented 200 msec after stimulus termination, this target-specific enhancement in visual cortex was specifically associated with correct conscious report. The strength of this modulation predicted individual levels of performance in behavior. By contrast, although later postcues presented 1000 msec after stimulus termination had some impact on activity in early visual cortex, this modulation no longer related to conscious report. These results demonstrate that within a critical time window of a few hundred milliseconds after a visual stimulus has disappeared, successful conscious report of that stimulus still relates to the strength of top-down modulation in early visual cortex. We suggest that, within this critical time window, sensory representation of a visual stimulus is still under construction and so can still be flexibly influenced by top-down modulatory processes.

  2. Functional segregation of the human cingulate cortex is confirmed by functional connectivity based neuroanatomical parcellation.

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    Yu, Chunshui; Zhou, Yuan; Liu, Yong; Jiang, Tianzi; Dong, Haiwei; Zhang, Yunting; Walter, Martin

    2011-02-14

    The four-region model with 7 specified subregions represents a theoretical construct of functionally segregated divisions of the cingulate cortex based on integrated neurobiological assessments. Under this framework, we aimed to investigate the functional specialization of the human cingulate cortex by analyzing the resting-state functional connectivity (FC) of each subregion from a network perspective. In 20 healthy subjects we systematically investigated the FC patterns of the bilateral subgenual (sACC) and pregenual (pACC) anterior cingulate cortices, anterior (aMCC) and posterior (pMCC) midcingulate cortices, dorsal (dPCC) and ventral (vPCC) posterior cingulate cortices and retrosplenial cortices (RSC). We found that each cingulate subregion was specifically integrated in the predescribed functional networks and showed anti-correlated resting-state fluctuations. The sACC and pACC were involved in an affective network and anti-correlated with the sensorimotor and cognitive networks, while the pACC also correlated with the default-mode network and anti-correlated with the visual network. In the midcingulate cortex, however, the aMCC was correlated with the cognitive and sensorimotor networks and anti-correlated with the visual, affective and default-mode networks, whereas the pMCC only correlated with the sensorimotor network and anti-correlated with the cognitive and visual networks. The dPCC and vPCC involved in the default-mode network and anti-correlated with the sensorimotor, cognitive and visual networks, in contrast, the RSC was mainly correlated with the PCC and thalamus. Based on a strong hypothesis driven approach of anatomical partitions of the cingulate cortex, we could confirm their segregation in terms of functional neuroanatomy, as suggested earlier by task studies or exploratory multi-seed investigations. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. The contribution of the human posterior parietal cortex to episodic memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sestieri, Carlo; Shulman, Gordon L; Corbetta, Maurizio

    2017-02-17

    The posterior parietal cortex (PPC) is traditionally associated with attention, perceptual decision making and sensorimotor transformations, but more recent human neuroimaging studies support an additional role in episodic memory retrieval. In this Opinion article, we present a functional-anatomical model of the involvement of the PPC in memory retrieval. Parietal regions involved in perceptual attention and episodic memory are largely segregated and often show a push-pull relationship, potentially mediated by prefrontal regions. Moreover, different PPC regions carry out specific functions during retrieval - for example, representing retrieved information, recoding this information based on task demands, or accumulating evidence for memory decisions.

  4. Uncovering a context-specific connectional fingerprint of human dorsal premotor cortex

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Moisa, Marius; Siebner, Hartwig R; Pohmann, Rolf

    2012-01-01

    Primate electrophysiological and lesion studies indicate a prominent role of the left dorsal premotor cortex (PMd) in action selection based on learned sensorimotor associations. Here we applied transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to human left PMd at low or high intensity while right...... to directly assess how stimulation of left PMd modulates task-related brain activity depending on the mode of movement selection. Relative to passive viewing, both tasks activated a frontoparietal motor network. Compared with low-intensity TMS, high-intensity TMS of left PMd was associated with an increase...

  5. Binaural fusion and the representation of virtual pitch in the human auditory cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pantev, C; Elbert, T; Ross, B; Eulitz, C; Terhardt, E

    1996-10-01

    The auditory system derives the pitch of complex tones from the tone's harmonics. Research in psychoacoustics predicted that binaural fusion was an important feature of pitch processing. Based on neuromagnetic human data, the first neurophysiological confirmation of binaural fusion in hearing is presented. The centre of activation within the cortical tonotopic map corresponds to the location of the perceived pitch and not to the locations that are activated when the single frequency constituents are presented. This is also true when the different harmonics of a complex tone are presented dichotically. We conclude that the pitch processor includes binaural fusion to determine the particular pitch location which is activated in the auditory cortex.

  6. Level of action of cathodal DC polarisation induced inhibition of the human motor cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nitsche, Michael A; Nitsche, Maren S; Klein, Cornelia C; Tergau, Frithjof; Rothwell, John C; Paulus, Walter

    2003-04-01

    To induce prolonged motor cortical excitability reductions by transcranial direct current stimulation in the human. Cathodal direct current stimulation was applied transcranially to the hand area of the human primary motor cortex from 5 to 9 min in separate sessions in twelve healthy subjects. Cortico-spinal excitability was tested by single pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation. Transcranial electrical stimulation and H-reflexes were used to learn about the origin of the excitability changes. Neurone specific enolase was measured before and after the stimulation to prove the safety of the stimulation protocol. Five and 7 min direct current stimulation resulted in motor cortical excitability reductions, which lasted for minutes after the end of stimulation, 9 min stimulation induced after-effects for up to an hour after the end of stimulation, as revealed by transcranial magnetic stimulation. Muscle evoked potentials elicited by transcranial electric stimulation and H-reflexes did not change. Neurone specific enolase concentrations remained stable throughout the experiments. Cathodal transcranial direct current stimulation is capable of inducing prolonged excitability reductions in the human motor cortex non-invasively. These changes are most probably localised intracortically.

  7. A functional magnetic resonance imaging investigation of visual hallucinations in the human striate cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abid, Hina; Ahmad, Fayyaz; Lee, Soo Y; Park, Hyun W; Im, Dongmi; Ahmad, Iftikhar; Chaudhary, Safee U

    2016-11-29

    Human beings frequently experience fear, phobia, migraine and hallucinations, however, the cerebral mechanisms underpinning these conditions remain poorly understood. Towards this goal, in this work, we aim to correlate the human ocular perceptions with visual hallucinations, and map them to their cerebral origins. An fMRI study was performed to examine the visual cortical areas including the striate, parastriate and peristriate cortex in the occipital lobe of the human brain. 24 healthy subjects were enrolled and four visual patterns including hallucination circle (HCC), hallucination fan (HCF), retinotopy circle (RTC) and retinotopy cross (RTX) were used towards registering their impact in the aforementioned visual related areas. One-way analysis of variance was used to evaluate the significance of difference between induced activations. Multinomial regression and and K-means were used to cluster activation patterns in visual areas of the brain. Significant activations were observed in the visual cortex as a result of stimulus presentation. The responses induced by visual stimuli were resolved to Brodmann areas 17, 18 and 19. Activation data clustered into independent and mutually exclusive clusters with HCC registering higher activations as compared to HCF, RTC and RTX. We conclude that small circular objects, in rotation, tend to leave greater hallucinating impressions in the visual region. The similarity between observed activation patterns and those reported in conditions such as epilepsy and visual hallucinations can help elucidate the cortical mechanisms underlying these conditions. Trial Registration 1121_GWJUNG.

  8. Somatosensory discrimination deficits following pediatric cerebral malaria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dugbartey, A T; Spellacy, F J; Dugbartey, M T

    1998-09-01

    Pathologic studies of central nervous system damage in human falciparum malaria indicate primary localization in the cerebral white matter. We report a sensory-perceptual investigation of 20 Ghanaian children with a recent history of cerebral malaria who were age-, gender-, and education-matched with 20 healthy control subjects. Somatosensory examinations failed to show any evidence of hemianesthesia, pseudohemianesthesia, or extinction to double simultaneous tactile stimulation. While unilateral upper limb testing revealed intact unimanual tactile roughness discrimination, bimanual tactile discrimination, however, was significantly impaired in the cerebral malaria group. A strong negative correlation (r = -0.72) between coma duration and the bimanual tactile roughness discrimination test was also found. An inefficiency in the integrity of callosal fibers appear to account for our findings, although alternative subcortical mechanisms known to be involved in information transfer across the cerebral hemispheres may be compromised as well.

  9. The complexity of the calretinin-expressing progenitors in the human cerebral cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nevena V Radonjic

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available The complex structure and function of the cerebral cortex critically depend on the balance of excitation and inhibition provided by the pyramidal projection neurons and GABAergic interneurons, respectively. The calretinin-expressing (CalR+ cell is a subtype of GABAergic cortical interneurons that is more prevalent in humans than in rodents. In rodents, CalR+ interneurons originate in the caudal ganglionic eminence (CGE from Gsx2+ progenitors, but in humans it has been suggested that a subpopulation of CalR+ cells can also be generated in the cortical ventricular/subventricular zone (VZ/SVZ. The progenitors for cortically generated CalR+ subpopulation in primates are not yet characterized. Hence, the aim of this study was to identify patterns of expression of the transcription factors (TFs that commit cortical stem cells to the CalR fate, with a focus on Gsx2. First, we studied the expression of Gsx2 and its downstream effectors, Ascl1 and Sp8 in the cortical regions of the fetal human forebrain at midgestation. Next, we established that a subpopulation of cells expressing these TFs are proliferating in the cortical SVZ, and can be co-labeled with CalR. The presence and proliferation of Gsx2+ cells, not only in the ventral telencephalon (GE as previously reported, but also in the cerebral cortex suggests cortical origin of a subpopulation of CalR+ neurons in humans. In vitro treatment of human cortical progenitors with Sonic hedgehog (Shh, an important morphogen in the specification of interneurons, decreased levels of Ascl1 and Sp8 proteins, but did not affect Gsx2 levels. Taken together, our ex-vivo and in vitro results on human fetal brain suggest complex endogenous and exogenous regulation of TFs implied in the specification of different subtypes of CalR+ cortical interneurons.

  10. Disruption of visuospatial and somatosensory functional connectivity in anorexia nervosa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Favaro, Angela; Santonastaso, Paolo; Manara, Renzo; Bosello, Romina; Bommarito, Giulia; Tenconi, Elena; Di Salle, Francesco

    2012-11-15

    Although body image disturbance is considered one of the core characteristics of anorexia nervosa (AN), the exact nature of this complex feature is poorly understood. Task-related functional magnetic resonance imaging studies can only partially explore the multimodal complexity of body consciousness, which is a complex cognition underpinned by aspects of visual perception, proprioception, and touch. The aim of the present study was to explore the functional connectivity of networks involved in visuospatial and somatosensory processing in AN. Twenty-nine subjects with AN, 16 women who had recovered from it, and 26 healthy women underwent a resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging scan and neuropsychological assessment of their visuospatial abilities using the Rey-Osterrieth Complex Figure Test. Both AN groups showed areas of decreased connectivity in the ventral visual network, a network involved in the "what?" pathway of visual perception. Even more interestingly, the AN group, but not the recovered AN group, displayed increased coactivation in the left parietal cortex, encompassing the somatosensory cortex, in an area implicated in long-term multimodal spatial memory and representation, even in the absence of visual information. A neuropsychological assessment of visuospatial abilities revealed that aspects of detail processing and global integration (central coherence) showed correlations with connectivity of this brain area in the AN group. Our findings show that AN is associated with double disruption of brain connectivity, which shows a specific association with visuospatial difficulties and may explain the failure of the integration process between visual and somatosensory perceptual information that might sustain body image disturbance. Copyright © 2012 Society of Biological Psychiatry. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Laterodorsal nucleus of the thalamus: A processor of somatosensory inputs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bezdudnaya, Tatiana; Keller, Asaf

    2008-04-20

    The laterodorsal (LD) nucleus of the thalamus has been considered a "higher order" nucleus that provides inputs to limbic cortical areas. Although its functions are largely unknown, it is often considered to be involved in spatial learning and memory. Here we provide evidence that LD is part of a hitherto unknown pathway for processing somatosensory information. Juxtacellular and extracellular recordings from LD neurons reveal that they respond to vibrissa stimulation with short latency (median = 7 ms) and large magnitude responses (median = 1.2 spikes/stimulus). Most neurons (62%) had large receptive fields, responding to six and more individual vibrissae. Electrical stimulation of the trigeminal nucleus interpolaris (SpVi) evoked short latency responses (median = 3.8 ms) in vibrissa-responsive LD neurons. Labeling produced by anterograde and retrograde neuroanatomical tracers confirmed that LD neurons receive direct inputs from SpVi. Electrophysiological and neuroanatomical analyses revealed also that LD projects upon the cingulate and retrosplenial cortex, but has only sparse projections to the barrel cortex. These findings suggest that LD is part of a novel processing stream involved in spatial orientation and learning related to somatosensory cues. (c) 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  12. Tuning In to Sound: Frequency-Selective Attentional Filter in Human Primary Auditory Cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Da Costa, Sandra; van der Zwaag, Wietske; Miller, Lee M.; Clarke, Stephanie

    2013-01-01

    Cocktail parties, busy streets, and other noisy environments pose a difficult challenge to the auditory system: how to focus attention on selected sounds while ignoring others? Neurons of primary auditory cortex, many of which are sharply tuned to sound frequency, could help solve this problem by filtering selected sound information based on frequency-content. To investigate whether this occurs, we used high-resolution fMRI at 7 tesla to map the fine-scale frequency-tuning (1.5 mm isotropic resolution) of primary auditory areas A1 and R in six human participants. Then, in a selective attention experiment, participants heard low (250 Hz)- and high (4000 Hz)-frequency streams of tones presented at the same time (dual-stream) and were instructed to focus attention onto one stream versus the other, switching back and forth every 30 s. Attention to low-frequency tones enhanced neural responses within low-frequency-tuned voxels relative to high, and when attention switched the pattern quickly reversed. Thus, like a radio, human primary auditory cortex is able to tune into attended frequency channels and can switch channels on demand. PMID:23365225

  13. Plasticity in the Human Visual Cortex: An Ophthalmology-Based Perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosa, Andreia Martins; Silva, Maria Fátima; Murta, Joaquim

    2013-01-01

    Neuroplasticity refers to the ability of the brain to reorganize the function and structure of its connections in response to changes in the environment. Adult human visual cortex shows several manifestations of plasticity, such as perceptual learning and adaptation, working under the top-down influence of attention. Plasticity results from the interplay of several mechanisms, including the GABAergic system, epigenetic factors, mitochondrial activity, and structural remodeling of synaptic connectivity. There is also a downside of plasticity, that is, maladaptive plasticity, in which there are behavioral losses resulting from plasticity changes in the human brain. Understanding plasticity mechanisms could have major implications in the diagnosis and treatment of ocular diseases, such as retinal disorders, cataract and refractive surgery, amblyopia, and in the evaluation of surgical materials and techniques. Furthermore, eliciting plasticity could open new perspectives in the development of strategies that trigger plasticity for better medical and surgical outcomes. PMID:24205505

  14. Plasticity in the Human Visual Cortex: An Ophthalmology-Based Perspective

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreia Martins Rosa

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Neuroplasticity refers to the ability of the brain to reorganize the function and structure of its connections in response to changes in the environment. Adult human visual cortex shows several manifestations of plasticity, such as perceptual learning and adaptation, working under the top-down influence of attention. Plasticity results from the interplay of several mechanisms, including the GABAergic system, epigenetic factors, mitochondrial activity, and structural remodeling of synaptic connectivity. There is also a downside of plasticity, that is, maladaptive plasticity, in which there are behavioral losses resulting from plasticity changes in the human brain. Understanding plasticity mechanisms could have major implications in the diagnosis and treatment of ocular diseases, such as retinal disorders, cataract and refractive surgery, amblyopia, and in the evaluation of surgical materials and techniques. Furthermore, eliciting plasticity could open new perspectives in the development of strategies that trigger plasticity for better medical and surgical outcomes.

  15. Encoding of frequency-modulation (FM) rates in human auditory cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okamoto, Hidehiko; Kakigi, Ryusuke

    2015-12-14

    Frequency-modulated sounds play an important role in our daily social life. However, it currently remains unclear whether frequency modulation rates affect neural activity in the human auditory cortex. In the present study, using magnetoencephalography, we investigated the auditory evoked N1m and sustained field responses elicited by temporally repeated and superimposed frequency-modulated sweeps that were matched in the spectral domain, but differed in frequency modulation rates (1, 4, 16, and 64 octaves per sec). The results obtained demonstrated that the higher rate frequency-modulated sweeps elicited the smaller N1m and the larger sustained field responses. Frequency modulation rate had a significant impact on the human brain responses, thereby providing a key for disentangling a series of natural frequency-modulated sounds such as speech and music.

  16. Frequency-specific attentional modulation in human primary auditory cortex and midbrain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riecke, Lars; Peters, Judith C; Valente, Giancarlo; Poser, Benedikt A; Kemper, Valentin G; Formisano, Elia; Sorger, Bettina

    2018-07-01

    Paying selective attention to an audio frequency selectively enhances activity within primary auditory cortex (PAC) at the tonotopic site (frequency channel) representing that frequency. Animal PAC neurons achieve this 'frequency-specific attentional spotlight' by adapting their frequency tuning, yet comparable evidence in humans is scarce. Moreover, whether the spotlight operates in human midbrain is unknown. To address these issues, we studied the spectral tuning of frequency channels in human PAC and inferior colliculus (IC), using 7-T functional magnetic resonance imaging (FMRI) and frequency mapping, while participants focused on different frequency-specific sounds. We found that shifts in frequency-specific attention alter the response gain, but not tuning profile, of PAC frequency channels. The gain modulation was strongest in low-frequency channels and varied near-monotonically across the tonotopic axis, giving rise to the attentional spotlight. We observed less prominent, non-tonotopic spatial patterns of attentional modulation in IC. These results indicate that the frequency-specific attentional spotlight in human PAC as measured with FMRI arises primarily from tonotopic gain modulation, rather than adapted frequency tuning. Moreover, frequency-specific attentional modulation of afferent sound processing in human IC seems to be considerably weaker, suggesting that the spotlight diminishes toward this lower-order processing stage. Our study sheds light on how the human auditory pathway adapts to the different demands of selective hearing. Copyright © 2018 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Enhanced attentional gain as a mechanism for generalized perceptual learning in human visual cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Byers, Anna; Serences, John T

    2014-09-01

    Learning to better discriminate a specific visual feature (i.e., a specific orientation in a specific region of space) has been associated with plasticity in early visual areas (sensory modulation) and with improvements in the transmission of sensory information from early visual areas to downstream sensorimotor and decision regions (enhanced readout). However, in many real-world scenarios that require perceptual expertise, observers need to efficiently process numerous exemplars from a broad stimulus class as opposed to just a single stimulus feature. Some previous data suggest that perceptual learning leads to highly specific neural modulations that support the discrimination of specific trained features. However, the extent to which perceptual learning acts to improve the discriminability of a broad class of stimuli via the modulation of sensory responses in human visual cortex remains largely unknown. Here, we used functional MRI and a multivariate analysis method to reconstruct orientation-selective response profiles based on activation patterns in the early visual cortex before and after subjects learned to discriminate small offsets in a set of grating stimuli that were rendered in one of nine possible orientations. Behavioral performance improved across 10 training sessions, and there was a training-related increase in the amplitude of orientation-selective response profiles in V1, V2, and V3 when orientation was task relevant compared with when it was task irrelevant. These results suggest that generalized perceptual learning can lead to modified responses in the early visual cortex in a manner that is suitable for supporting improved discriminability of stimuli drawn from a large set of exemplars. Copyright © 2014 the American Physiological Society.

  18. Temporal envelope processing in the human auditory cortex: response and interconnections of auditory cortical areas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gourévitch, Boris; Le Bouquin Jeannès, Régine; Faucon, Gérard; Liégeois-Chauvel, Catherine

    2008-03-01

    Temporal envelope processing in the human auditory cortex has an important role in language analysis. In this paper, depth recordings of local field potentials in response to amplitude modulated white noises were used to design maps of activation in primary, secondary and associative auditory areas and to study the propagation of the cortical activity between them. The comparison of activations between auditory areas was based on a signal-to-noise ratio associated with the response to amplitude modulation (AM). The functional connectivity between cortical areas was quantified by the directed coherence (DCOH) applied to auditory evoked potentials. This study shows the following reproducible results on twenty subjects: (1) the primary auditory cortex (PAC), the secondary cortices (secondary auditory cortex (SAC) and planum temporale (PT)), the insular gyrus, the Brodmann area (BA) 22 and the posterior part of T1 gyrus (T1Post) respond to AM in both hemispheres. (2) A stronger response to AM was observed in SAC and T1Post of the left hemisphere independent of the modulation frequency (MF), and in the left BA22 for MFs 8 and 16Hz, compared to those in the right. (3) The activation and propagation features emphasized at least four different types of temporal processing. (4) A sequential activation of PAC, SAC and BA22 areas was clearly visible at all MFs, while other auditory areas may be more involved in parallel processing upon a stream originating from primary auditory area, which thus acts as a distribution hub. These results suggest that different psychological information is carried by the temporal envelope of sounds relative to the rate of amplitude modulation.

  19. SOMATOSENSORY EVOKED POTENTIALS IN DIABETES MELLITUS TYPE - 2

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    Rekha

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Diabetes mellitus is the most common metabolic disorder affecting majority of population. It is estimated that over 400 million people throughout the world have diabetes. It has progressed to be a pandemic from an epidemic causing morbidity and mortality in the population. Among the many complications of diabetes, diabetic neuropathies contribute majorly to the morbidity associated with the disease. Axonal conduction is affected by elevated levels of protein kinase c causing neuronal ischemia; decreased ce llular myoinositol affecting sodium potassium ATPase pump leads to decreased nerve conduction; Somatosensory E voked P otentials (SSEPs reflect the activity of somatosensory pathways mediated through the dorsal columns of the spinal cord and the specific so matosensory cortex. Recording of Somatosensory Evoked Potentials in diabetics is done to assess the sensory involvement of spinal cord. Presence of SEPs provides clear evidence for axonal continuity and by using different stimulation sites, the rate of reg eneration can be determined. Both onset and peak latencies of all SEP components are prolonged in patients with diabetes. Present study is done to compare somatosensory evoked potentials in diabetics and normal subjects. MATERIALS AND METHOD S: The present study was undertaken at the Upgraded Department of Physiology, Osmania Medical College, Koti, Hyderabad. The study was conducted on subjects, both male and female in the age group of 45 to 55 years, suffering from type II diabetes excluding other neurologi cal disorders. Non - invasive method of estimation of nerve conduction studies using SFEMG/EP — Electromyography or evoked potential system (Nicolet systems — USA using surface electrodes with automated computerized monitor attached with printer is used. RESUL TS : ANOVA showed statistically significant N9 latency (right & left sides. Latencies of all the components of SSEPs were more significant than amplitudes in Diabetic

  20. More than Skin Deep: Body Representation beyond Primary Somatosensory Cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Longo, Matthew R.; Azanon, Elena; Haggard, Patrick

    2010-01-01

    The neural circuits underlying initial sensory processing of somatic information are relatively well understood. In contrast, the processes that go beyond primary somatosensation to create more abstract representations related to the body are less clear. In this review, we focus on two classes of higher-order processing beyond Somatosensation.…

  1. A practical guide for the identification of major sulcogyral structures of the human cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Destrieux, Christophe; Terrier, Louis Marie; Andersson, Frédéric; Love, Scott A; Cottier, Jean-Philippe; Duvernoy, Henri; Velut, Stéphane; Janot, Kevin; Zemmoura, Ilyess

    2017-05-01

    The precise sulcogyral localization of cortical lesions is mandatory to improve communication between practitioners and to predict and prevent post-operative deficits. This process, which assumes a good knowledge of the cortex anatomy and a systematic analysis of images, is, nevertheless, sometimes neglected in the neurological and neurosurgical training. This didactic paper proposes a brief overview of the sulcogyral anatomy, using conventional MR-slices, and also reconstructions of the cortical surface after a more or less extended inflation process. This method simplifies the cortical anatomy by removing part of the cortical complexity induced by the folding process, and makes it more understandable. We then reviewed several methods for localizing cortical structures, and proposed a three-step identification: after localizing the lateral, medial or ventro-basal aspect of the hemisphere (step 1), the main interlobar sulci were located to limit the lobes (step 2). Finally, intralobar sulci and gyri were identified (step 3) thanks to the same set of rules. This paper does not propose any new identification method but should be regarded as a set of practical guidelines, useful in daily clinical practice, for detecting the main sulci and gyri of the human cortex.

  2. Right hemispheric dominance of visual phenomena evoked by intracerebral stimulation of the human visual cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jonas, Jacques; Frismand, Solène; Vignal, Jean-Pierre; Colnat-Coulbois, Sophie; Koessler, Laurent; Vespignani, Hervé; Rossion, Bruno; Maillard, Louis

    2014-07-01

    Electrical brain stimulation can provide important information about the functional organization of the human visual cortex. Here, we report the visual phenomena evoked by a large number (562) of intracerebral electrical stimulations performed at low-intensity with depth electrodes implanted in the occipito-parieto-temporal cortex of 22 epileptic patients. Focal electrical stimulation evoked primarily visual hallucinations with various complexities: simple (spot or blob), intermediary (geometric forms), or complex meaningful shapes (faces); visual illusions and impairments of visual recognition were more rarely observed. With the exception of the most posterior cortical sites, the probability of evoking a visual phenomenon was significantly higher in the right than the left hemisphere. Intermediary and complex hallucinations, illusions, and visual recognition impairments were almost exclusively evoked by stimulation in the right hemisphere. The probability of evoking a visual phenomenon decreased substantially from the occipital pole to the most anterior sites of the temporal lobe, and this decrease was more pronounced in the left hemisphere. The greater sensitivity of the right occipito-parieto-temporal regions to intracerebral electrical stimulation to evoke visual phenomena supports a predominant role of right hemispheric visual areas from perception to recognition of visual forms, regardless of visuospatial and attentional factors. Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  3. Attention Determines Contextual Enhancement versus Suppression in Human Primary Visual Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flevaris, Anastasia V; Murray, Scott O

    2015-09-02

    Neural responses in primary visual cortex (V1) depend on stimulus context in seemingly complex ways. For example, responses to an oriented stimulus can be suppressed when it is flanked by iso-oriented versus orthogonally oriented stimuli but can also be enhanced when attention is directed to iso-oriented versus orthogonal flanking stimuli. Thus the exact same contextual stimulus arrangement can have completely opposite effects on neural responses-in some cases leading to orientation-tuned suppression and in other cases leading to orientation-tuned enhancement. Here we show that stimulus-based suppression and enhancement of fMRI responses in humans depends on small changes in the focus of attention and can be explained by a model that combines feature-based attention with response normalization. Neurons in the primary visual cortex (V1) respond to stimuli within a restricted portion of the visual field, termed their "receptive field." However, neuronal responses can also be influenced by stimuli that surround a receptive field, although the nature of these contextual interactions and underlying neural mechanisms are debated. Here we show that the response in V1 to a stimulus in the same context can either be suppressed or enhanced depending on the focus of attention. We are able to explain the results using a simple computational model that combines two well established properties of visual cortical responses: response normalization and feature-based enhancement. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/3512273-08$15.00/0.

  4. Independent delta/theta rhythms in the human hippocampus and entorhinal cortex

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    Florian Mormann

    2008-05-01

    Full Text Available Theta oscillations in the medial temporal lobe (MTL of mammals are involved in various functions such as spatial navigation, sensorimotor integration, and cognitive processing. While the theta rhythm was originally assumed to originate in the medial septum, more recent studies suggest autonomous theta generation in the MTL. Although coherence between entorhinal and hippocampal theta activity has been found to influence memory formation, it remains unclear whether these two structures can generate theta independently. In this study we analyzed intracranial electroencephalographic (EEG recordings from 22 patients with unilateral hippocampal sclerosis undergoing presurgical evaluation prior to resection of the epileptic focus. Using a wavelet-based, frequency-band-specific measure of phase synchronization, we quantified synchrony between 10 different recording sites along the longitudinal axis of the hippocampal formation in the non-epileptic brain hemisphere. We compared EEG synchrony between adjacent recording sites (i within the entorhinal cortex, (ii within the hippocampus, and (iii between the hippocampus and entorhinal cortex. We observed a significant interregional gap in synchrony for the delta and theta band, indicating the existence of independent delta/theta rhythms in different subregions of the human MTL. The interaction of these rhythms could represent the temporal basis for the information processing required for mnemonic encoding and retrieval.

  5. Lipid alterations in lipid rafts from Alzheimer's disease human brain cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martín, Virginia; Fabelo, Noemí; Santpere, Gabriel; Puig, Berta; Marín, Raquel; Ferrer, Isidre; Díaz, Mario

    2010-01-01

    Lipid rafts are membrane microdomains intimately associated with cell signaling. These biochemical microstructures are characterized by their high contents of sphingolipids, cholesterol and saturated fatty acids and a reduced content of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA). Here, we have purified lipid rafts of human frontal brain cortex from normal and Alzheimer's disease (AD) and characterized their biochemical lipid composition. The results revealed that lipid rafts from AD brains exhibit aberrant lipid profiles compared to healthy brains. In particular, lipid rafts from AD brains displayed abnormally low levels of n-3 long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (LCPUFA, mainly 22:6n-3, docosahexaenoic acid) and monoenes (mainly 18:1n-9, oleic acid), as well as reduced unsaturation and peroxidability indexes. Also, multiple relationships between phospholipids and fatty acids were altered in AD lipid rafts. Importantly, no changes were observed in the mole percentage of lipid classes and fatty acids in rafts from normal brains throughout the lifespan (24-85 years). These indications point to the existence of homeostatic mechanisms preserving lipid raft status in normal frontal cortex. The disruption of such mechanisms in AD brains leads to a considerable increase in lipid raft order and viscosity, which may explain the alterations in lipid raft signaling observed in AD.

  6. Characterization of visual percepts evoked by noninvasive stimulation of the human posterior parietal cortex.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter J Fried

    Full Text Available Phosphenes are commonly evoked by transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS to study the functional organization, connectivity, and excitability of the human visual brain. For years, phosphenes have been documented only from stimulating early visual areas (V1-V3 and a handful of specialized visual regions (V4, V5/MT+ in occipital cortex. Recently, phosphenes were reported after applying TMS to a region of posterior parietal cortex involved in the top-down modulation of visuo-spatial processing. In the present study, we systematically characterized parietal phosphenes to determine if they are generated directly by local mechanisms or emerge through indirect activation of other visual areas. Using technology developed in-house to record the subjective features of phosphenes, we found no systematic differences in the size, shape, location, or frame-of-reference of parietal phosphenes when compared to their occipital counterparts. In a second experiment, discrete deactivation by 1 Hz repetitive TMS yielded a double dissociation: phosphene thresholds increased at the deactivated site without producing a corresponding change at the non-deactivated location. Overall, the commonalities of parietal and occipital phosphenes, and our ability to independently modulate their excitability thresholds, lead us to conclude that they share a common neural basis that is separate from either of the stimulated regions.

  7. GABAA receptor B subunit expression in the superior frontal cortex of human alcoholics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Buckley, S.T.; Dodd, P.R.

    2001-01-01

    Full text: Changes in GABA A receptor pharmacology can be ascribed to alterations in expression of specific GABA A receptor subunits. Ethanol is known to be a potent agonist of the GABA A receptor. Chronic abuse of alcohol in humans results in damage of selective brain regions such as the superior frontal cortex (SFC), leading to neuronal cell loss. Studies in our laboratory 1 and elsewhere 2 have shown differences in expression of a number of GABA A receptor subunits in chronic human alcoholism. This suggests that alterations in GABA A receptor composition may be involved in the pathogenesis of alcoholic brain damage. We analysed the expression of the β 1 ,β 2 and β 3 isoforms of the GABA A receptor by a competitive reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) technique, which utilised an internal standard (IS) for quantitation. 35 S-dATP was incorporated to enable visualisation of the PCR products. Human brain tissue was obtained at autopsy and stored in 0.32 M sucrose at -80 deg C. Total RNA was extracted from pathologically susceptible and spared regions, SFC and motor cortex respectively,of 22 control and 22 alcoholic patients. 1 μg of total RNA from each sample was co-amplified with 0.5 pg of IS and a ratio determined. A standard consisting of known amounts of β 1 cRNA titrated against 0.5 pg of IS enabled a standard curve to be generated for quantitation of each unknown sample. The samples were subjected to polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis and the dried gel exposed to a phosphorimager screen. Data analysis was performed using the ImageQuant program. Initial results indicate that there is a reduction in expression of all the β transcripts in alcoholics when compared with controls, which supports the hypothesis that the GABA A receptor is altered by alcohol abuse. Supported by NHMRC. Copyright (2001) Australian Neuroscience Society

  8. Physiological slowing and upregulation of inhibition in cortex are correlated with behavioral deficits in protein malnourished rats.

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    Rahul Chaudhary

    Full Text Available Protein malnutrition during early development has been correlated with cognitive and learning disabilities in children, but the neuronal deficits caused by long-term protein deficiency are not well understood. We exposed rats from gestation up to adulthood to a protein-deficient (PD diet, to emulate chronic protein malnutrition in humans. The offspring exhibited significantly impaired performance on the 'Gap-crossing' (GC task after reaching maturity, a behavior that has been shown to depend on normal functioning of the somatosensory cortex. The physiological state of the somatosensory cortex was examined to determine neuronal correlates of the deficits in behavior. Extracellular multi-unit recording from layer 4 (L4 neurons that receive direct thalamocortical inputs and layers 2/3 (L2/3 neurons that are dominated by intracortical connections in the whisker-barrel cortex of PD rats exhibited significantly low spontaneous activity and depressed responses to whisker stimulation. L4 neurons were more severely affected than L2/3 neurons. The response onset was significantly delayed in L4 cells. The peak response latency of L4 and L2/3 neurons was delayed significantly. In L2/3 and L4 of the barrel cortex there was a substantial increase in GAD65 (112% over controls and much smaller increase in NMDAR1 (12-20%, suggesting enhanced inhibition in the PD cortex. These results show that chronic protein deficiency negatively affects both thalamo-cortical and cortico-cortical transmission during somatosensory information processing. The findings support the interpretation that sustained protein deficiency interferes with features of cortical sensory processing that are likely to underlie the cognitive impairments reported in humans who have suffered from prolonged protein deficiency.

  9. Corticofugal projections induce long-lasting effects on somatosensory responses in the trigeminal complex of the rat

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    Angel eNunez

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available The sensory information flow at subcortical relay stations is controlled by the action of topographic connections from the neocortex. To determinate the functional properties of the somatosensory corticofugal projections to the principal (Pr5 and caudal spinal (Sp5C trigeminal nuclei, we performed unitary recordings in anesthetized rats. To examine the effect of these cortical projections we used tactile stimulation of the whisker and electrical stimulation of somatosensory cortices. Corticofugal anatomical projections to Pr5 and Sp5C nuclei were detected by using retrograde fluorescent tracers. Neurons projecting exclusively to Pr5 were located in the cingulate cortex while neurons projecting to both Sp5C and Pr5 nuclei were located in the somatosensory and insular cortices (>75% of neurons. Physiological results indicated that primary somatosensory cortex produced a short-lasting facilitating or inhibiting effects (< 5 minutes of tactile responses in Pr5 nucleus through activation of NMDA glutamatergic or GABAA receptors since effects were blocked by iontophoretically application of APV and bicuculline, respectively. In contrast, stimulation of secondary somatosensory cortex did not affect most of the Pr5 neurons; however both cortices inhibited the nociceptive responses in the Sp5C nucleus through activation of glycinergic or GABAA receptors because effects were blocked by iontophoretically application of strychnine and bicuculline, respectively. These and anatomical results demonstrated that the somatosensory cortices projects to Pr5 nucleus to modulate tactile responses by excitatory and inhibitory actions, while projections to the Sp5C nucleus control nociceptive sensory transmission by only inhibitory effects. Thus, somatosensory cortices may modulate innocuous and noxious inputs simultaneously, contributing to the perception of specifically tactile or painful sensations.

  10. Influence of body position on cortical pain-related somatosensory processing: an ERP study.

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    Chiara Spironelli

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Despite the consistent information available on the physiological changes induced by head down bed rest, a condition which simulates space microgravity, our knowledge on the possible perceptual-cortical alterations is still poor. The present study investigated the effects of 2-h head-down bed rest on subjective and cortical responses elicited by electrical, pain-related somatosensory stimulation. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Twenty male subjects were randomly assigned to two groups, head-down bed rest (BR or sitting control condition. Starting from individual electrical thresholds, Somatosensory Evoked Potentials were elicited by electrical stimuli administered randomly to the left wrist and divided into four conditions: control painless condition, electrical pain threshold, 30% above pain threshold, 30% below pain threshold. Subjective pain ratings collected during the EEG session showed significantly reduced pain perception in BR compared to Control group. Statistical analysis on four electrode clusters and sLORETA source analysis revealed, in sitting controls, a P1 component (40-50 ms in the right somatosensory cortex, whereas it was bilateral and differently located in BR group. Controls' N1 (80-90 ms had widespread right hemisphere activation, involving also anterior cingulate, whereas BR group showed primary somatosensory cortex activation. The P2 (190-220 ms was larger in left-central locations of Controls compared with BR group. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Head-down bed rest was associated to an overall decrease of pain sensitivity and an altered pain network also outside the primary somatosensory cortex. Results have implications not only for astronauts' health and spaceflight risks, but also for the clinical aspects of pain detection in bedridden patients at risk of fatal undetected complications.

  11. Context-dependent spatially periodic activity in the human entorhinal cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nadasdy, Zoltan; Nguyen, T Peter; Török, Ágoston; Shen, Jason Y; Briggs, Deborah E; Modur, Pradeep N; Buchanan, Robert J

    2017-04-25

    The spatially periodic activity of grid cells in the entorhinal cortex (EC) of the rodent, primate, and human provides a coordinate system that, together with the hippocampus, informs an individual of its location relative to the environment and encodes the memory of that location. Among the most defining features of grid-cell activity are the 60° rotational symmetry of grids and preservation of grid scale across environments. Grid cells, however, do display a limited degree of adaptation to environments. It remains unclear if this level of environment invariance generalizes to human grid-cell analogs, where the relative contribution of visual input to the multimodal sensory input of the EC is significantly larger than in rodents. Patients diagnosed with nontractable epilepsy who were implanted with entorhinal cortical electrodes performing virtual navigation tasks to memorized locations enabled us to investigate associations between grid-like patterns and environment. Here, we report that the activity of human entorhinal cortical neurons exhibits adaptive scaling in grid period, grid orientation, and rotational symmetry in close association with changes in environment size, shape, and visual cues, suggesting scale invariance of the frequency, rather than the wavelength, of spatially periodic activity. Our results demonstrate that neurons in the human EC represent space with an enhanced flexibility relative to neurons in rodents because they are endowed with adaptive scalability and context dependency.

  12. Dosage-dependent non-linear effect of L-dopa on human motor cortex plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monte-Silva, Katia; Liebetanz, David; Grundey, Jessica; Paulus, Walter; Nitsche, Michael A

    2010-09-15

    The neuromodulator dopamine affects learning and memory formation and their likely physiological correlates, long-term depression and potentiation, in animals and humans. It is known from animal experiments that dopamine exerts a dosage-dependent, inverted U-shaped effect on these functions. However, this has not been explored in humans so far. In order to reveal a non-linear dose-dependent effect of dopamine on cortical plasticity in humans, we explored the impact of 25, 100 and 200 mg of L-dopa on transcranial direct current (tDCS)-induced plasticity in twelve healthy human subjects. The primary motor cortex served as a model system, and plasticity was monitored by motor evoked potential amplitudes elicited by transcranial magnetic stimulation. As compared to placebo medication, low and high dosages of L-dopa abolished facilitatory as well as inhibitory plasticity, whereas the medium dosage prolonged inhibitory plasticity, and turned facilitatory plasticity into inhibition. Thus the results show clear non-linear, dosage-dependent effects of dopamine on both facilitatory and inhibitory plasticity, and support the assumption of the importance of a specific dosage of dopamine optimally suited to improve plasticity. This might be important for the therapeutic application of dopaminergic agents, especially for rehabilitative purposes, and explain some opposing results in former studies.

  13. Functional specializations in human cerebral cortex analyzed using the Visible Man surface-based atlas

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    Drury, H. A.; Van Essen, D. C.

    1997-01-01

    We used surface-based representations to analyze functional specializations in the human cerebral cortex. A computerized reconstruction of the cortical surface of the Visible Man digital atlas was generated and transformed to the Talairach coordinate system. This surface was also flattened and used to establish a surface-based coordinate system that respects the topology of the cortical sheet. The linkage between two-dimensional and three-dimensional representations allows the locations of published neuroimaging activation foci to be stereotaxically projected onto the Visible Man cortical flat map. An analysis of two activation studies related to the hearing and reading of music and of words illustrates how this approach permits the systematic estimation of the degree of functional segregation and of potential functional overlap for different aspects of sensory processing.

  14. Functional reorganization of human motor cortex after unaffected side C7 nerve root transposition

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gao Gejun; Feng Xiaoyuan; Xu Wendong; Gu Yudong; Tang Weijun; Sun Guixin; Li Ke; Li Yuan; Geng Daoying

    2006-01-01

    Objective: To assess the characteristics of neuronal activity in human motor cortex after the seventh cervical nerve root transposition of the unaffected side by using functional MRI (fMRI). Methods: Thirteen patients who accepted the seventh cervical nerve root transposition of the unaffected side, due to total brachial plexus traction injury diagnosed by manifestation and operation, were examined retrospectively by using fMRI. 10 patients were injured on the left side and 3 on the right side. According to functional recovery of the affected hand, all subjects can be divided into 2 groups. The patients of the first group could not move the affected hand voluntarily. The patients of the second group could move the affected hand self-determined. 12 healthy volunteer's were also involved in this study as control. The fMRI examinations were performed by using echo-planer BOLD sequence. Then the SPM 99 software was used for post-processing. Results: The neuronal activation induced by the movement of both unaffected and affected upper' limb was seen in the contralateral PMC in all patients; Neuronal activation in the ipsilateral PMC evoked by movement of the unaffected extremity was seen in 10 cases, and induced by movement of the affected limb was seen in 7 cases. In the first group, the sharp of clusters in the contralateral PMC resulted by movement of the unaffected extremity showed normal in 9 eases, the average size of clusters resulted by the unaffected hand was 3159 (voxel), and resulted by the unaffected shoulder was 1746(voxel). The sharp of clusters in the contralateral PMC resulted by the affected shoulder or hand were revealed enlargement in 6 cases of each. In the second group, 1 case showed neuronal activation induced by movement of the affected limb in the PMC in both sides of motor cortex, and 2 cases showed neuronal activation in the contralateral PMC. Conclusions: Peripheral nerve injury was able to cause changes of motor cortex in human brain

  15. Stimulus uncertainty enhances long-term potentiation-like plasticity in human motor cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sale, Martin V; Nydam, Abbey S; Mattingley, Jason B

    2017-03-01

    Plasticity can be induced in human cortex using paired associative stimulation (PAS), which repeatedly and predictably pairs a peripheral electrical stimulus with transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to the contralateral motor region. Many studies have reported small or inconsistent effects of PAS. Given that uncertain stimuli can promote learning, the predictable nature of the stimulation in conventional PAS paradigms might serve to attenuate plasticity induction. Here, we introduced stimulus uncertainty into the PAS paradigm to investigate if it can boost plasticity induction. Across two experimental sessions, participants (n = 28) received a modified PAS paradigm consisting of a random combination of 90 paired stimuli and 90 unpaired (TMS-only) stimuli. Prior to each of these stimuli, participants also received an auditory cue which either reliably predicted whether the upcoming stimulus was paired or unpaired (no uncertainty condition) or did not predict the upcoming stimulus (maximum uncertainty condition). Motor evoked potentials (MEPs) evoked from abductor pollicis brevis (APB) muscle quantified cortical excitability before and after PAS. MEP amplitude increased significantly 15 min following PAS in the maximum uncertainty condition. There was no reliable change in MEP amplitude in the no uncertainty condition, nor between post-PAS MEP amplitudes across the two conditions. These results suggest that stimulus uncertainty may provide a novel means to enhance plasticity induction with the PAS paradigm in human motor cortex. To provide further support to the notion that stimulus uncertainty and prediction error promote plasticity, future studies should further explore the time course of these changes, and investigate what aspects of stimulus uncertainty are critical in boosting plasticity. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. How learning might strengthen existing visual object representations in human object-selective cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brants, Marijke; Bulthé, Jessica; Daniels, Nicky; Wagemans, Johan; Op de Beeck, Hans P

    2016-02-15

    Visual object perception is an important function in primates which can be fine-tuned by experience, even in adults. Which factors determine the regions and the neurons that are modified by learning is still unclear. Recently, it was proposed that the exact cortical focus and distribution of learning effects might depend upon the pre-learning mapping of relevant functional properties and how this mapping determines the informativeness of neural units for the stimuli and the task to be learned. From this hypothesis we would expect that visual experience would strengthen the pre-learning distributed functional map of the relevant distinctive object properties. Here we present a first test of this prediction in twelve human subjects who were trained in object categorization and differentiation, preceded and followed by a functional magnetic resonance imaging session. Specifically, training increased the distributed multi-voxel pattern information for trained object distinctions in object-selective cortex, resulting in a generalization from pre-training multi-voxel activity patterns to after-training activity patterns. Simulations show that the increased selectivity combined with the inter-session generalization is consistent with a training-induced strengthening of a pre-existing selectivity map. No training-related neural changes were detected in other regions. In sum, training to categorize or individuate objects strengthened pre-existing representations in human object-selective cortex, providing a first indication that the neuroanatomical distribution of learning effects depends upon the pre-learning mapping of visual object properties. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Immunocytochemical expression of monocarboxylate transporters in the human visual cortex at midgestation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fayol, Laurence; Baud, Olivier; Monier, Anne; Pellerin, Luc; Magistretti, Pierre; Evrard, Philippe; Verney, Catherine

    2004-01-31

    Lactate and the other monocarboxylates are a major energy source for the developing brain. We investigated the immunocytochemical expression of two monocarboxylate transporters, MCT1 and MCT2, in the human visual cortex between 13 and 26 post-ovulatory weeks. We used immunoperoxidase and immunofluorescence techniques to determine whether these transporters co-localized with markers for blood vessels (CD34), neurons (microtubule-associated protein 2 [MAP2], SMI 311), radial glia (vimentin), or astrocytes (glial fibrillary acidic protein [GFAP], S100beta protein). MCT1 immunoreactivity was visible in blood vessel walls as early as the 13th week of gestation mainly in the cortical plate and subplate. At this stage, less than 10% of vessels in the ventricular layer expressed MCT1, whereas all blood vessels walls showed this immunoreactivity at the 26th gestational week. Starting at the 19th week of gestation, sparse MCT1 positive cell bodies were detected, some of them co-localized with MAP2 immunoreactivity. MCT2 immunoreactivity was noted in astrocytic cell bodies from week 19 and spread subsequently to the astrocyte end-feet in contact with blood vessels. MCTs immunoreactivities were most marked in the subplate and deep cortical plate, where the most differentiated neurons were located. Our findings suggest that monocarboxylate trafficking between vessels (MCT1), astrocytes (MCT2) and some postmitotic neurons (MCT1) could develop gradually toward 20 gestational weeks (g.w.). These data suggest that lactate or other monocarboxylates could represent a significant energy source for the human visual cortex at this early stage.

  18. Dorsolateral Prefrontal Cortex GABA Concentration in Humans Predicts Working Memory Load Processing Capacity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoon, Jong H; Grandelis, Anthony; Maddock, Richard J

    2016-11-16

    The discovery of neural mechanisms of working memory (WM) would significantly enhance our understanding of complex human behaviors and guide treatment development for WM-related impairments found in neuropsychiatric conditions and aging. Although the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) has long been considered critical for WM, we still know little about the neural elements and pathways within the DLPFC that support WM in humans. In this study, we tested whether an individual's DLPFC gamma-aminobutryic acid (GABA) content predicts individual differences in WM task performance using a novel behavioral approach. Twenty-three healthy adults completed a task that measured the unique contribution of major WM components (memory load, maintenance, and distraction resistance) to performance. This was done to address the possibility that components have differing GABA dependencies and the failure to parse WM into components would lead to missing true associations with GABA. The subjects then had their DLPFC GABA content measured by single-voxel proton magnetic spectroscopy. We found that individuals with lower DLPFC GABA showed greater performance degradation with higher load, accounting for 31% of variance, p (corrected) = 0.015. This relationship was component, neurochemical, and brain region specific. DLPFC GABA content did not predict performance sensitivity to other components tested; DLPFC glutamate + glutamine and visual cortical GABA content did not predict load sensitivity. These results confirm the involvement of DLPFC GABA in WM load processing in humans and implicate factors controlling DLPFC GABA content in the neural mechanisms of WM and its impairments. This study demonstrated for the first time that the amount of gamma-aminobutryic acid (GABA), the major inhibitory neurotransmitter of the brain, in an individual's prefrontal cortex predicts working memory (WM) task performance. Given that WM is required for many of the most characteristic cognitive and

  19. Our Faces in the Dog's Brain: Functional Imaging Reveals Temporal Cortex Activation during Perception of Human Faces.

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    Laura V Cuaya

    Full Text Available Dogs have a rich social relationship with humans. One fundamental aspect of it is how dogs pay close attention to human faces in order to guide their behavior, for example, by recognizing their owner and his/her emotional state using visual cues. It is well known that humans have specific brain regions for the processing of other human faces, yet it is unclear how dogs' brains process human faces. For this reason, our study focuses on describing the brain correlates of perception of human faces in dogs using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI. We trained seven domestic dogs to remain awake, still and unrestrained inside an MRI scanner. We used a visual stimulation paradigm with block design to compare activity elicited by human faces against everyday objects. Brain activity related to the perception of faces changed significantly in several brain regions, but mainly in the bilateral temporal cortex. The opposite contrast (i.e., everyday objects against human faces showed no significant brain activity change. The temporal cortex is part of the ventral visual pathway, and our results are consistent with reports in other species like primates and sheep, that suggest a high degree of evolutionary conservation of this pathway for face processing. This study introduces the temporal cortex as candidate to process human faces, a pillar of social cognition in dogs.

  20. Coordinated Expression of Phosphoinositide Metabolic Genes during Development and Aging of Human Dorsolateral Prefrontal Cortex.

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    Stanley I Rapoport

    Full Text Available Phosphoinositides, lipid-signaling molecules, participate in diverse brain processes within a wide metabolic cascade.Gene transcriptional networks coordinately regulate the phosphoinositide cascade during human brain Development and Aging.We used the public BrainCloud database for human dorsolateral prefrontal cortex to examine age-related expression levels of 49 phosphoinositide metabolic genes during Development (0 to 20+ years and Aging (21+ years.We identified three groups of partially overlapping genes in each of the two intervals, with similar intergroup correlations despite marked phenotypic differences between Aging and Development. In each interval, ITPKB, PLCD1, PIK3R3, ISYNA1, IMPA2, INPPL1, PI4KB, and AKT1 are in Group 1, PIK3CB, PTEN, PIK3CA, and IMPA1 in Group 2, and SACM1L, PI3KR4, INPP5A, SYNJ1, and PLCB1 in Group 3. Ten of the genes change expression nonlinearly during Development, suggesting involvement in rapidly changing neuronal, glial and myelination events. Correlated transcription for some gene pairs likely is facilitated by colocalization on the same chromosome band.Stable coordinated gene transcriptional networks regulate brain phosphoinositide metabolic pathways during human Development and Aging.

  1. Neuropeptide Y-immunoreactive neurons in the cerebral cortex of humans and other haplorrhine primates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raghanti, Mary Ann; Conley, Tiffini; Sudduth, Jessica; Erwin, Joseph M.; Stimpson, Cheryl D.; Hof, Patrick R.; Sherwood, Chet C.

    2012-01-01

    We examined the distribution of neurons immunoreactive for neuropeptide Y (NPY) in the posterior part of the superior temporal cortex (Brodmann's area 22 or area Tpt) of humans and nonhuman haplorrhine primates. NPY has been implicated in learning and memory and the density of NPY-expressing cortical neurons and axons is reduced in depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and Alzheimer's disease. Due to the role that NPY plays in both cognition and neurodegenerative diseases, we tested the hypothesis that the density of cortical and interstitial neurons expressing NPY was increased in humans relative to other primate species. The study sample included great apes (chimpanzee and gorilla), Old World monkeys (pigtailed macaque, moor macaque, and baboon) and New World monkeys (squirrel monkey and capuchin). Stereologic methods were used to estimate the density of NPY-immunoreactive (-ir) neurons in layers I-VI of area Tpt and the subjacent white matter. Adjacent Nissl-stained sections were used to calculate local densities of all neurons. The ratio of NPY-ir neurons to total neurons within area Tpt and the total density of NPY-ir neurons within the white matter were compared among species. Overall, NPY-ir neurons represented only an average of 0.006% of the total neuron population. While there were significant differences among species, phylogenetic trends in NPY-ir neuron distributions were not observed and humans did not differ from other primates. However, variation among species warrants further investigation into the distribution of this neuromodulator system. PMID:23042407

  2. The human dorsal premotor cortex facilitates the excitability of ipsilateral primary motor cortex via a short latency cortico-cortical route

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Groppa, Sergiu; Schlaak, Boris H; Münchau, Alexander

    2012-01-01

    In non-human primates, invasive tracing and electrostimulation studies have identified strong ipsilateral cortico-cortical connections between dorsal premotor- (PMd) and the primary motor cortex (M1(HAND) ). Here, we applied dual-site transcranial magnetic stimulation (dsTMS) to left PMd and M1......(HAND) through specifically designed minicoils to selectively probe ipsilateral PMd-to-M1(HAND) connectivity in humans. A suprathreshold test stimulus (TS) was applied to M1(HAND) producing a motor evoked potential (MEP) of about 0.5 mV in the relaxed right first dorsal interosseus muscle (FDI......) facilitation did not change as a function of CS intensity. Even at higher intensities, the CS alone failed to elicit a MEP or a cortical silent period in the pre-activated FDI, excluding a direct spread of excitation from PMd to M1(HAND). No MEP facilitation was present while CS was applied rostrally over...

  3. Classic and Golli Myelin Basic Protein have distinct developmental trajectories in human visual cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siu, Caitlin R; Balsor, Justin L; Jones, David G; Murphy, Kathryn M

    2015-01-01

    Traditionally, myelin is viewed as insulation around axons, however, more recent studies have shown it also plays an important role in plasticity, axonal metabolism, and neuroimmune signaling. Myelin is a complex multi-protein structure composed of hundreds of proteins, with Myelin Basic Protein (MBP) being the most studied. MBP has two families: Classic-MBP that is necessary for activity driven compaction of myelin around axons, and Golli-MBP that is found in neurons, oligodendrocytes, and T-cells. Furthermore, Golli-MBP has been called a "molecular link" between the nervous and immune systems. In visual cortex specifically, myelin proteins interact with immune processes to affect experience-dependent plasticity. We studied myelin in human visual cortex using Western blotting to quantify Classic- and Golli-MBP expression in post-mortem tissue samples ranging in age from 20 days to 80 years. We found that Classic- and Golli-MBP have different patterns of change across the lifespan. Classic-MBP gradually increases to 42 years and then declines into aging. Golli-MBP has early developmental changes that are coincident with milestones in visual system sensitive period, and gradually increases into aging. There are three stages in the balance between Classic- and Golli-MBP expression, with Golli-MBP dominating early, then shifting to Classic-MBP, and back to Golli-MBP in aging. Also Golli-MBP has a wave of high inter-individual variability during childhood. These results about cortical MBP expression are timely because they compliment recent advances in MRI techniques that produce high resolution maps of cortical myelin in normal and diseased brain. In addition, the unique pattern of Golli-MBP expression across the lifespan suggests that it supports high levels of neuroimmune interaction in cortical development and in aging.

  4. Modulatory Effects of Attention on Lateral Inhibition in the Human Auditory Cortex.

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    Alva Engell

    Full Text Available Reduced neural processing of a tone is observed when it is presented after a sound whose spectral range closely frames the frequency of the tone. This observation might be explained by the mechanism of lateral inhibition (LI due to inhibitory interneurons in the auditory system. So far, several characteristics of bottom up influences on LI have been identified, while the influence of top-down processes such as directed attention on LI has not been investigated. Hence, the study at hand aims at investigating the modulatory effects of focused attention on LI in the human auditory cortex. In the magnetoencephalograph, we present two types of masking sounds (white noise vs. withe noise passing through a notch filter centered at a specific frequency, followed by a test tone with a frequency corresponding to the center-frequency of the notch filter. Simultaneously, subjects were presented with visual input on a screen. To modulate the focus of attention, subjects were instructed to concentrate either on the auditory input or the visual stimuli. More specific, on one half of the trials, subjects were instructed to detect small deviations in loudness in the masking sounds while on the other half of the trials subjects were asked to detect target stimuli on the screen. The results revealed a reduction in neural activation due to LI, which was larger during auditory compared to visual focused attention. Attentional modulations of LI were observed in two post-N1m time intervals. These findings underline the robustness of reduced neural activation due to LI in the auditory cortex and point towards the important role of attention on the modulation of this mechanism in more evaluative processing stages.

  5. Modulatory Effects of Attention on Lateral Inhibition in the Human Auditory Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Engell, Alva; Junghöfer, Markus; Stein, Alwina; Lau, Pia; Wunderlich, Robert; Wollbrink, Andreas; Pantev, Christo

    2016-01-01

    Reduced neural processing of a tone is observed when it is presented after a sound whose spectral range closely frames the frequency of the tone. This observation might be explained by the mechanism of lateral inhibition (LI) due to inhibitory interneurons in the auditory system. So far, several characteristics of bottom up influences on LI have been identified, while the influence of top-down processes such as directed attention on LI has not been investigated. Hence, the study at hand aims at investigating the modulatory effects of focused attention on LI in the human auditory cortex. In the magnetoencephalograph, we present two types of masking sounds (white noise vs. withe noise passing through a notch filter centered at a specific frequency), followed by a test tone with a frequency corresponding to the center-frequency of the notch filter. Simultaneously, subjects were presented with visual input on a screen. To modulate the focus of attention, subjects were instructed to concentrate either on the auditory input or the visual stimuli. More specific, on one half of the trials, subjects were instructed to detect small deviations in loudness in the masking sounds while on the other half of the trials subjects were asked to detect target stimuli on the screen. The results revealed a reduction in neural activation due to LI, which was larger during auditory compared to visual focused attention. Attentional modulations of LI were observed in two post-N1m time intervals. These findings underline the robustness of reduced neural activation due to LI in the auditory cortex and point towards the important role of attention on the modulation of this mechanism in more evaluative processing stages.

  6. Conantokin probes of NMDA receptors in normal and Alzheimer disease human cerebral cortex

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ragnarsson, L.; Dodd, P.R.; Lewis, R.J.

    2002-01-01

    Full text: The pharmacology of the N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor site was examined in pathologically affected and relatively spared regions of cerebral cortex tissue obtained at autopsy from Alzheimer disease cases and matched controls. The affinity and density of the [ 3 H]MK-801 binding site were delineated along with the enhancement of [ 3 H]MK-801 binding by glutamate and spermine. Sites with distinct pharmacologies were distributed regionally through the cortex. The differences could not be explained by variations in the parameters of [ 3 H]MK-801 binding; rather, the data suggest that the subunit composition of NMDA receptors may be locally variable. Selective differences were also found between controls and Alzheimer disease cases in certain brain regions. The interactions of human NMDA sites with the Ala(7) and Lys(7) derivatives of conantokin-G (Con-G) were also characterized. Ala(7)-con-G showed the higher affinity of the two peptides, and also defined two distinct binding sites in controls. In distinction to the Ala(7) peptide, Lys(7)- con-G showed preferential binding to receptor sites in Alzheimer disease cf. control brain. Modified conantokins are useful for identifying differences in subunit composition of the NMDA receptors between brain areas. They may also have potential as protective agents against over-excitation mediated by specific NMDA receptors, which might contribute to localized brain damage in Alzheimer disease. For further characterization of the pharmacology of different NMDA receptor subunits, a mammalian expression system has been developed for the analysis of their responses to selected ligands, including conantokins. Copyright (2002) Australian Neuroscience Society

  7. Influence of motivation on control hierarchy in the human frontal cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bahlmann, Jörg; Aarts, Esther; D'Esposito, Mark

    2015-02-18

    The frontal cortex mediates cognitive control and motivation to shape human behavior. It is generally observed that medial frontal areas are involved in motivational aspects of behavior, whereas lateral frontal regions are involved in cognitive control. Recent models of cognitive control suggest a rostro-caudal gradient in lateral frontal regions, such that progressively more rostral (anterior) regions process more complex aspects of cognitive control. How motivation influences such a control hierarchy is still under debate. Although some researchers argue that both systems work in parallel, others argue in favor of an interaction between motivation and cognitive control. In the latter case it is yet unclear how motivation would affect the different levels of the control hierarchy. This was investigated in the present functional MRI study applying different levels of cognitive control under different motivational states (low vs high reward anticipation). Three levels of cognitive control were tested by varying rule complexity: stimulus-response mapping (low-level), flexible task updating (mid-level), and sustained cue-task associations (high-level). We found an interaction between levels of cognitive control and motivation in medial and lateral frontal subregions. Specifically, flexible updating (mid-level of control) showed the strongest beneficial effect of reward and only this level exhibited functional coupling between dopamine-rich midbrain regions and the lateral frontal cortex. These findings suggest that motivation differentially affects the levels of a control hierarchy, influencing recruitment of frontal cortical control regions depending on specific task demands. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/353207-11$15.00/0.

  8. Decoding Speech With Integrated Hybrid Signals Recorded From the Human Ventral Motor Cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kenji Ibayashi

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Restoration of speech communication for locked-in patients by means of brain computer interfaces (BCIs is currently an important area of active research. Among the neural signals obtained from intracranial recordings, single/multi-unit activity (SUA/MUA, local field potential (LFP, and electrocorticography (ECoG are good candidates for an input signal for BCIs. However, the question of which signal or which combination of the three signal modalities is best suited for decoding speech production remains unverified. In order to record SUA, LFP, and ECoG simultaneously from a highly localized area of human ventral sensorimotor cortex (vSMC, we fabricated an electrode the size of which was 7 by 13 mm containing sparsely arranged microneedle and conventional macro contacts. We determined which signal modality is the most capable of decoding speech production, and tested if the combination of these signals could improve the decoding accuracy of spoken phonemes. Feature vectors were constructed from spike frequency obtained from SUAs and event-related spectral perturbation derived from ECoG and LFP signals, then input to the decoder. The results showed that the decoding accuracy for five spoken vowels was highest when features from multiple signals were combined and optimized for each subject, and reached 59% when averaged across all six subjects. This result suggests that multi-scale signals convey complementary information for speech articulation. The current study demonstrated that simultaneous recording of multi-scale neuronal activities could raise decoding accuracy even though the recording area is limited to a small portion of cortex, which is advantageous for future implementation of speech-assisting BCIs.

  9. Attention improves encoding of task-relevant features in the human visual cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jehee, Janneke F.M.; Brady, Devin K.; Tong, Frank

    2011-01-01

    When spatial attention is directed towards a particular stimulus, increased activity is commonly observed in corresponding locations of the visual cortex. Does this attentional increase in activity indicate improved processing of all features contained within the attended stimulus, or might spatial attention selectively enhance the features relevant to the observer’s task? We used fMRI decoding methods to measure the strength of orientation-selective activity patterns in the human visual cortex while subjects performed either an orientation or contrast discrimination task, involving one of two laterally presented gratings. Greater overall BOLD activation with spatial attention was observed in areas V1-V4 for both tasks. However, multivariate pattern analysis revealed that orientation-selective responses were enhanced by attention only when orientation was the task-relevant feature, and not when the grating’s contrast had to be attended. In a second experiment, observers discriminated the orientation or color of a specific lateral grating. Here, orientation-selective responses were enhanced in both tasks but color-selective responses were enhanced only when color was task-relevant. In both experiments, task-specific enhancement of feature-selective activity was not confined to the attended stimulus location, but instead spread to other locations in the visual field, suggesting the concurrent involvement of a global feature-based attentional mechanism. These results suggest that attention can be remarkably selective in its ability to enhance particular task-relevant features, and further reveal that increases in overall BOLD amplitude are not necessarily accompanied by improved processing of stimulus information. PMID:21632942

  10. Assessing Somatosensory Utilization during Unipedal Postural Control

    OpenAIRE

    Goel, Rahul; De Dios, Yiri E.; Gadd, Nichole E.; Caldwell, Erin E.; Peters, Brian T.; Reschke, Millard F.; Bloomberg, Jacob J.; Oddsson, Lars I. E.; Mulavara, Ajitkumar P.

    2017-01-01

    Multisensory—visual, vestibular and somatosensory information is integrated for appropriate postural control. The primary goal of this study was to assess somatosensory utilization during a functional motor task of unipedal postural control, in normal healthy adults. Assessing individual bias in the utilization of individual sensory contributions during postural control may help customization of rehabilitation protocols. In this study, a test paradigm of unipedal stance control in supine orie...

  11. Development of Glutamatergic Proteins in Human Visual Cortex across the Lifespan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siu, Caitlin R; Beshara, Simon P; Jones, David G; Murphy, Kathryn M

    2017-06-21

    Traditionally, human primary visual cortex (V1) has been thought to mature within the first few years of life, based on anatomical studies of synapse formation, and establishment of intracortical and intercortical connections. Human vision, however, develops well beyond the first few years. Previously, we found prolonged development of some GABAergic proteins in human V1 (Pinto et al., 2010). Yet as >80% of synapses in V1 are excitatory, it remains unanswered whether the majority of synapses regulating experience-dependent plasticity and receptive field properties develop late, like their inhibitory counterparts. To address this question, we used Western blotting of postmortem tissue from human V1 (12 female, 18 male) covering a range of ages. Then we quantified a set of postsynaptic glutamatergic proteins (PSD-95, GluA2, GluN1, GluN2A, GluN2B), calculated indices for functional pairs that are developmentally regulated (GluA2:GluN1; GluN2A:GluN2B), and determined interindividual variability. We found early loss of GluN1, prolonged development of PSD-95 and GluA2 into late childhood, protracted development of GluN2A until ∼40 years, and dramatic loss of GluN2A in aging. The GluA2:GluN1 index switched at ∼1 year, but the GluN2A:GluN2B index continued to shift until ∼40 year before changing back to GluN2B in aging. We also identified young childhood as a stage of heightened interindividual variability. The changes show that human V1 develops gradually through a series of five orchestrated stages, making it likely that V1 participates in visual development and plasticity across the lifespan. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Anatomical structure of human V1 appears to mature early, but vision changes across the lifespan. This discrepancy has fostered two hypotheses: either other aspects of V1 continue changing, or later changes in visual perception depend on extrastriate areas. Previously, we showed that some GABAergic synaptic proteins change across the lifespan, but most

  12. Probing the corticospinal link between the motor cortex and motoneurones: some neglected aspects of human motor cortical function

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Petersen, Nicolas Caesar; Butler, Jane E.; Taylor, Janet L.

    2010-01-01

    of the discharge of motor units have revealed that the rapidly conducting corticospinal axons (stimulated at higher intensities) contribute to drive motoneurones in normal voluntary contractions. There are also major non-linearities generated at a spinal level in the relation between corticospinal output...... magnetic stimulation of the human motor cortex have highlighted the capacity of the cortex to modify its apparent excitability in response to altered afferent inputs, training and various pathologies. Studies using cortical stimulation at 'very low' intensities which elicit only short-latency suppression...

  13. Aging Affects Adaptation to Sound-Level Statistics in Human Auditory Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herrmann, Björn; Maess, Burkhard; Johnsrude, Ingrid S

    2018-02-21

    Optimal perception requires efficient and adaptive neural processing of sensory input. Neurons in nonhuman mammals adapt to the statistical properties of acoustic feature distributions such that they become sensitive to sounds that are most likely to occur in the environment. However, whether human auditory responses adapt to stimulus statistical distributions and how aging affects adaptation to stimulus statistics is unknown. We used MEG to study how exposure to different distributions of sound levels affects adaptation in auditory cortex of younger (mean: 25 years; n = 19) and older (mean: 64 years; n = 20) adults (male and female). Participants passively listened to two sound-level distributions with different modes (either 15 or 45 dB sensation level). In a control block with long interstimulus intervals, allowing neural populations to recover from adaptation, neural response magnitudes were similar between younger and older adults. Critically, both age groups demonstrated adaptation to sound-level stimulus statistics, but adaptation was altered for older compared with younger people: in the older group, neural responses continued to be sensitive to sound level under conditions in which responses were fully adapted in the younger group. The lack of full adaptation to the statistics of the sensory environment may be a physiological mechanism underlying the known difficulty that older adults have with filtering out irrelevant sensory information. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Behavior requires efficient processing of acoustic stimulation. Animal work suggests that neurons accomplish efficient processing by adjusting their response sensitivity depending on statistical properties of the acoustic environment. Little is known about the extent to which this adaptation to stimulus statistics generalizes to humans, particularly to older humans. We used MEG to investigate how aging influences adaptation to sound-level statistics. Listeners were presented with sounds drawn from

  14. Effect of Somatosensory Impairments on Balance Control

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alireza Hassanpour

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Background and Aim: The somatosensory system is one of the most effective systems in balance control. It consists of peripheral and central components. Knowing the role of these components in balance control assists the developing of effective rehabilitation protocols. In some diseases peripheral components and in others central components are impaired. This paper reviews the effect of impairment of peripheral and central components of the somatosensory system on balance control.Methods: In this study publication about somatosensory impairments from 1983 through 2011 in PubMed, Scopus, ProQuest, Google Scholar, Iran Medex, Iran Doc and Magiran were reviewed. Medical subject headings terms and keywords related to balance, somatosensory, somatosensory loss, and sensory integration/processing were used to perform the searches.Conclusion: Somatosensory impairments either with peripheral or central origin, can cause problems in balance control. However, these problems are not considered in some patients. In these impairments, balance training is recommended to be used alongside other routine treatments in the patients' rehabilitation programs.

  15. Reduced recruitment of orbitofrontal cortex to human social chemosensory cues in social anxiety.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Wen; Hou, Ping; Zhou, Yuxiang; Chen, Denise

    2011-04-01

    Social anxiety refers to the prevalent and debilitating experience of fear and anxiety of being scrutinized in social situations. It originates from both learned (e.g. adverse social conditioning) and innate (e.g. shyness) factors. Research on social anxiety has traditionally focused on negative emotions induced by visual and auditory social cues in socially anxious clinical populations, and posits a dysfunctional orbitofrontal-amygdala circuit as a primary etiological mechanism. Yet as a trait, social anxiety is independent of one's specific emotional state. Here we probe the neural substrate of intrinsic social anxiety by employing a unique type of social stimuli, airborne human social chemosensory cues that are inherently social, ubiquitously present, and yet operating below verbal awareness. We show that the adopted social chemosensory cues were not perceived to be human-related, did not differentially bias self-report of anxiety or autonomic nervous system responses, yet individuals with elevated social anxiety demonstrated a reduced recruitment of the orbitofrontal cortex to social chemosensory cues. No reciprocal activity in the amygdala was observed. Our findings point to an intrinsic neural substrate underlying social anxiety that is not associated with prior adverse social conditioning, thereby providing the first neural evidence for the inherent social aspect of this enigmatic phenomenon. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Activations of human auditory cortex to phonemic and nonphonemic vowels during discrimination and memory tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harinen, Kirsi; Rinne, Teemu

    2013-08-15

    We used fMRI to investigate activations within human auditory cortex (AC) to vowels during vowel discrimination, vowel (categorical n-back) memory, and visual tasks. Based on our previous studies, we hypothesized that the vowel discrimination task would be associated with increased activations in the anterior superior temporal gyrus (STG), while the vowel memory task would enhance activations in the posterior STG and inferior parietal lobule (IPL). In particular, we tested the hypothesis that activations in the IPL during vowel memory tasks are associated with categorical processing. Namely, activations due to categorical processing should be higher during tasks performed on nonphonemic (hard to categorize) than on phonemic (easy to categorize) vowels. As expected, we found distinct activation patterns during vowel discrimination and vowel memory tasks. Further, these task-dependent activations were different during tasks performed on phonemic or nonphonemic vowels. However, activations in the IPL associated with the vowel memory task were not stronger during nonphonemic than phonemic vowel blocks. Together these results demonstrate that activations in human AC to vowels depend on both the requirements of the behavioral task and the phonemic status of the vowels. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Spike-timing-dependent plasticity in the human dorso-lateral prefrontal cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casula, Elias Paolo; Pellicciari, Maria Concetta; Picazio, Silvia; Caltagirone, Carlo; Koch, Giacomo

    2016-12-01

    Changes in the synaptic strength of neural connections are induced by repeated coupling of activity of interconnected neurons with precise timing, a phenomenon known as spike-timing-dependent plasticity (STDP). It is debated if this mechanism exists in large-scale cortical networks in humans. We combined transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) with concurrent electroencephalography (EEG) to directly investigate the effects of two paired associative stimulation (PAS) protocols (fronto-parietal and parieto-frontal) of pre and post-synaptic inputs within the human fronto-parietal network. We found evidence that the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) has the potential to form robust STDP. Long-term potentiation/depression of TMS-evoked cortical activity is prompted after that DLPFC stimulation is followed/preceded by posterior parietal stimulation. Such bidirectional changes are paralleled by sustained increase/decrease of high-frequency oscillatory activity, likely reflecting STDP responsivity. The current findings could be important to drive plasticity of damaged cortical circuits in patients with cognitive or psychiatric disorders. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Controllability modulates the anticipatory response in the human ventromedial prefrontal cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Deborah Lucille Kerr

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Research has consistently shown that control is critical to psychological functioning, with perceived lack of control considered to play a crucial role in the manifestation of symptoms in psychiatric disorders. In a model of behavioral control based on nonhuman animal work, Maier and colleagues posited that the presence of control activates areas of the ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC, which in turn inhibit the normative stress response in the dorsal raphe nucleus and amygdala. To test Maier’s model in humans, we investigated the effects of control over potent aversive stimuli by presenting video clips of snakes to 21 snake phobics who were otherwise healthy with no comorbid psychopathologies. Based on prior research documenting that disrupted neural processing during the anticipation of adverse events can be influenced by different forms of cognitive processing such as perceptions of control, analyses focused on the anticipatory activity preceding the videos. We found that phobics exhibited greater vmPFC activity during the anticipation of snake videos when they had control over whether the videos were presented as compared to when they had no control over the presentation of the videos. In addition, observed functional connectivity between the vmPFC and the amygdala is consistent with previous work documenting vmPFC inhibition of the amygdala. Our results provide evidence to support the extension of Maier’s model of behavioral control to include anticipatory function in humans.

  19. Cellular and synaptic localization of EAAT2a in human cerebral cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcello eMelone

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available We used light and electron microscopic immunocytochemical techniques to analyze the distribution, cellular and synaptic localization of EAAT2, the main glutamate transporter, in normal human neocortex. EAAT2a immunoreactivity was in all layers and consisted of small neuropilar puncta and rare cells. In white matter EAAT2a+ cells were numerous. Electron microscopic studies showed that in gray matter ∼77% of immunoreactive elements were astrocytic processes, ∼14% axon terminals, ∼2.8% dendrites, whereas ∼5% were unidentifiable. In white matter, ∼81% were astrocytic processes, ∼17% were myelinated axons and ∼2.0% were unidentified. EAAT2a immunoreactivity was never in microglial cells and oligodendrocytes. Pre-embedding electron microscopy showed that ∼67% of EAAT2a expressed at (or in the vicinity of asymmetric synapses was in astrocytes, ∼17% in axon terminals, while ∼13% was both in astrocytes and in axons. Post-embeddeding electron microscopy studies showed that in astrocytic processes contacting asymmetric synapses and in axon terminals, gold particle density was ∼25.1 and ∼2.8 particles/µm2, respectively, and was concentrated in a membrane region extending for ∼300 nm from the active zone edge. Besides representing the first detailed description of EAAT2a in human cerebral cortex, these findings may contribute to understanding its role in the pathophysiology of neuropsychiatric diseases.

  20. Frequency-specific modulation of population-level frequency tuning in human auditory cortex

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    Roberts Larry E

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Under natural circumstances, attention plays an important role in extracting relevant auditory signals from simultaneously present, irrelevant noises. Excitatory and inhibitory neural activity, enhanced by attentional processes, seems to sharpen frequency tuning, contributing to improved auditory performance especially in noisy environments. In the present study, we investigated auditory magnetic fields in humans that were evoked by pure tones embedded in band-eliminated noises during two different stimulus sequencing conditions (constant vs. random under auditory focused attention by means of magnetoencephalography (MEG. Results In total, we used identical auditory stimuli between conditions, but presented them in a different order, thereby manipulating the neural processing and the auditory performance of the listeners. Constant stimulus sequencing blocks were characterized by the simultaneous presentation of pure tones of identical frequency with band-eliminated noises, whereas random sequencing blocks were characterized by the simultaneous presentation of pure tones of random frequencies and band-eliminated noises. We demonstrated that auditory evoked neural responses were larger in the constant sequencing compared to the random sequencing condition, particularly when the simultaneously presented noises contained narrow stop-bands. Conclusion The present study confirmed that population-level frequency tuning in human auditory cortex can be sharpened in a frequency-specific manner. This frequency-specific sharpening may contribute to improved auditory performance during detection and processing of relevant sound inputs characterized by specific frequency distributions in noisy environments.

  1. Probabilistic Tractography Recovers a Rostrocaudal Trajectory of Connectivity Variability in the Human Insular Cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cerliani, Leonardo; Thomas, Rajat M; Jbabdi, Saad; Siero, Jeroen CW; Nanetti, Luca; Crippa, Alessandro; Gazzola, Valeria; D'Arceuil, Helen; Keysers, Christian

    2012-01-01

    The insular cortex of macaques has a wide spectrum of anatomical connections whose distribution is related to its heterogeneous cytoarchitecture. Although there is evidence of a similar cytoarchitectural arrangement in humans, the anatomical connectivity of the insula in the human brain has not yet been investigated in vivo. In the present work, we used in vivo probabilistic white-matter tractography and Laplacian eigenmaps (LE) to study the variation of connectivity patterns across insular territories in humans. In each subject and hemisphere, we recovered a rostrocaudal trajectory of connectivity variation ranging from the anterior dorsal and ventral insula to the dorsal caudal part of the long insular gyri. LE suggested that regional transitions among tractography patterns in the insula occur more gradually than in other brain regions. In particular, the change in tractography patterns was more gradual in the insula than in the medial premotor region, where a sharp transition between different tractography patterns was found. The recovered trajectory of connectivity variation in the insula suggests a relation between connectivity and cytoarchitecture in humans resembling that previously found in macaques: tractography seeds from the anterior insula were mainly found in limbic and paralimbic regions and in anterior parts of the inferior frontal gyrus, while seeds from caudal insular territories mostly reached parietal and posterior temporal cortices. Regions in the putative dysgranular insula displayed more heterogeneous connectivity patterns, with regional differences related to the proximity with either putative granular or agranular regions. Hum Brain Mapp 33:2005–2034, 2012. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:21761507

  2. Learning and Recognition of a Non-conscious Sequence of Events in Human Primary Visual Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosenthal, Clive R; Andrews, Samantha K; Antoniades, Chrystalina A; Kennard, Christopher; Soto, David

    2016-03-21

    Human primary visual cortex (V1) has long been associated with learning simple low-level visual discriminations [1] and is classically considered outside of neural systems that support high-level cognitive behavior in contexts that differ from the original conditions of learning, such as recognition memory [2, 3]. Here, we used a novel fMRI-based dichoptic masking protocol-designed to induce activity in V1, without modulation from visual awareness-to test whether human V1 is implicated in human observers rapidly learning and then later (15-20 min) recognizing a non-conscious and complex (second-order) visuospatial sequence. Learning was associated with a change in V1 activity, as part of a temporo-occipital and basal ganglia network, which is at variance with the cortico-cerebellar network identified in prior studies of "implicit" sequence learning that involved motor responses and visible stimuli (e.g., [4]). Recognition memory was associated with V1 activity, as part of a temporo-occipital network involving the hippocampus, under conditions that were not imputable to mechanisms associated with conscious retrieval. Notably, the V1 responses during learning and recognition separately predicted non-conscious recognition memory, and functional coupling between V1 and the hippocampus was enhanced for old retrieval cues. The results provide a basis for novel hypotheses about the signals that can drive recognition memory, because these data (1) identify human V1 with a memory network that can code complex associative serial visuospatial information and support later non-conscious recognition memory-guided behavior (cf. [5]) and (2) align with mouse models of experience-dependent V1 plasticity in learning and memory [6]. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Human left ventral premotor cortex mediates matching of hand posture to object use.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guy Vingerhoets

    Full Text Available Visuomotor transformations for grasping have been associated with a fronto-parietal network in the monkey brain. The human homologue of the parietal monkey region (AIP has been identified as the anterior part of the intraparietal sulcus (aIPS, whereas the putative human equivalent of the monkey frontal region (F5 is located in the ventral part of the premotor cortex (vPMC. Results from animal studies suggest that monkey F5 is involved in the selection of appropriate hand postures relative to the constraints of the task. In humans, the functional roles of aIPS and vPMC appear to be more complex and the relative contribution of each region to grasp selection remains uncertain. The present study aimed to identify modulation in brain areas sensitive to the difficulty level of tool object - hand posture matching. Seventeen healthy right handed participants underwent fMRI while observing pictures of familiar tool objects followed by pictures of hand postures. The task was to decide whether the hand posture matched the functional use of the previously shown object. Conditions were manipulated for level of difficulty. Compared to a picture matching control task, the tool object - hand posture matching conditions conjointly showed increased modulation in several left hemispheric regions of the superior and inferior parietal lobules (including aIPS, the middle occipital gyrus, and the inferior temporal gyrus. Comparison of hard versus easy conditions selectively modulated the left inferior frontal gyrus with peak activity located in its opercular part (Brodmann area (BA 44. We suggest that in the human brain, vPMC/BA44 is involved in the matching of hand posture configurations in accordance with visual and functional demands.

  4. A new psychometric questionnaire for reporting of somatosensory percepts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, L. H.; McLeod, R. S.; Kiss, Z. H. T.

    2018-02-01

    Objective. There have been remarkable advances over the past decade in neural prostheses to restore lost motor function. However, restoration of somatosensory feedback, which is essential for fine motor control and user acceptance, has lagged behind. With an increasing interest in using electrical stimulation to restore somatosensory sensations within the peripheral (PNS) and central nervous systems (CNS), it is critical to characterize the percepts evoked by electrical stimulation in a standardized manner with a validated psychometric questionnaire. This will allow comparison of results from applications at various nervous system levels in multiple settings. Approach. We compiled a summary of published reports of somatosensory percepts that were elicited by electrical stimulation in humans and used these to develop a new psychometric questionnaire. Results. This new questionnaire was able to characterize subjective evoked sensations with good test-retest reliability (Spearman’s correlation coefficients ranging 0.716  ⩽  ρ  ⩽  1.000, p  ⩽  0.005) in 13 subjects receiving stimulation through neural implants in both the CNS and PNS. Furthermore, the new questionnaire captured more descriptors (M  =  2.65, SD  =  0.91) that would have been missed by being categorized as ‘other sensations’, using a previous questionnaire (M  =  1.40, SD  =  0.77, t(12)  =  -10.24, p  psychometric questionnaire will aid in establishing consistency and standardization of reporting in future studies of somatosensory neural prostheses.

  5. Canine and human visual cortex intact and responsive despite early retinal blindness from RPE65 mutation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Geoffrey K Aguirre

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available RPE65 is an essential molecule in the retinoid-visual cycle, and RPE65 gene mutations cause the congenital human blindness known as Leber congenital amaurosis (LCA. Somatic gene therapy delivered to the retina of blind dogs with an RPE65 mutation dramatically restores retinal physiology and has sparked international interest in human treatment trials for this incurable disease. An unanswered question is how the visual cortex responds after prolonged sensory deprivation from retinal dysfunction. We therefore studied the cortex of RPE65-mutant dogs before and after retinal gene therapy. Then, we inquired whether there is visual pathway integrity and responsivity in adult humans with LCA due to RPE65 mutations (RPE65-LCA.RPE65-mutant dogs were studied with fMRI. Prior to therapy, retinal and subcortical responses to light were markedly diminished, and there were minimal cortical responses within the primary visual areas of the lateral gyrus (activation amplitude mean +/- standard deviation [SD] = 0.07% +/- 0.06% and volume = 1.3 +/- 0.6 cm(3. Following therapy, retinal and subcortical response restoration was accompanied by increased amplitude (0.18% +/- 0.06% and volume (8.2 +/- 0.8 cm(3 of activation within the lateral gyrus (p < 0.005 for both. Cortical recovery occurred rapidly (within a month of treatment and was persistent (as long as 2.5 y after treatment. Recovery was present even when treatment was provided as late as 1-4 y of age. Human RPE65-LCA patients (ages 18-23 y were studied with structural magnetic resonance imaging. Optic nerve diameter (3.2 +/- 0.5 mm was within the normal range (3.2 +/- 0.3 mm, and occipital cortical white matter density as judged by voxel-based morphometry was slightly but significantly altered (1.3 SD below control average, p = 0.005. Functional magnetic resonance imaging in human RPE65-LCA patients revealed cortical responses with a markedly diminished activation volume (8.8 +/- 1.2 cm(3 compared to controls

  6. Listening to another sense: somatosensory integration in the auditory system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Calvin; Stefanescu, Roxana A; Martel, David T; Shore, Susan E

    2015-07-01

    Conventionally, sensory systems are viewed as separate entities, each with its own physiological process serving a different purpose. However, many functions require integrative inputs from multiple sensory systems and sensory intersection and convergence occur throughout the central nervous system. The neural processes for hearing perception undergo significant modulation by the two other major sensory systems, vision and somatosensation. This synthesis occurs at every level of the ascending auditory pathway: the cochlear nucleus, inferior colliculus, medial geniculate body and the auditory cortex. In this review, we explore the process of multisensory integration from (1) anatomical (inputs and connections), (2) physiological (cellular responses), (3) functional and (4) pathological aspects. We focus on the convergence between auditory and somatosensory inputs in each ascending auditory station. This review highlights the intricacy of sensory processing and offers a multisensory perspective regarding the understanding of sensory disorders.

  7. Neurochemical Characterization of PSA-NCAM+ Cells in the Human Brain and Phenotypic Quantification in Alzheimer's Disease Entorhinal Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murray, Helen C; Swanson, Molly E V; Dieriks, B Victor; Turner, Clinton; Faull, Richard L M; Curtis, Maurice A

    2018-02-21

    Polysialylated neural cell adhesion molecule (PSA-NCAM) is widely expressed in the adult human brain and facilitates structural remodeling of cells through steric inhibition of intercellular NCAM adhesion. We previously showed that PSA-NCAM immunoreactivity is decreased in the entorhinal cortex in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Based on available evidence, we hypothesized that a loss of PSA-NCAM + interneurons may underlie this reduction. PSA-NCAM expression by interneurons has previously been described in the human medial prefrontal cortex. Here we used postmortem human brain tissue to provide further evidence of PSA-NCAM + interneurons throughout the human hippocampal formation and additional cortical regions. Furthermore, PSA-NCAM + cell populations were assessed in the entorhinal cortex of normal and AD cases using fluorescent double labeling and manual cell counting. We found a significant decrease in the number of PSA-NCAM + cells per mm 2 in layer II and V of the entorhinal cortex, supporting our previous description of reduced PSA-NCAM immunoreactivity. Additionally, we found a significant decrease in the proportion of PSA-NCAM + cells that co-labeled with NeuN and parvalbumin, but no change in the proportion that co-labeled with calbindin or calretinin. These results demonstrate that PSA-NCAM is expressed by a variety of interneuron populations throughout the brain. Furthermore, that loss of PSA-NCAM expression by NeuN + cells predominantly contributes to the reduced PSA-NCAM immunoreactivity in the AD entorhinal cortex. Copyright © 2018 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. 3-D Cytoarchitectonic parcellation of human orbitofrontal cortex Correlation with postmortem MRI

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Uylings, H.B.M.; Sanz-Arigita, E.J.; Vos, K.; Pool, C.W.; Evers, P.; Rajkowska, G.

    2010-01-01

    The orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) is located on the basal surface of the frontal lobe and is distinguished by its unique anatomical and functional features. Clinical and postmortem studies suggest the involvement of the orbitofrontal cortex in psychiatric disorders. However, the exact parcellation of

  9. An anatomical substrate for integration among functional networks in human cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van den Heuvel, Martijn P; Sporns, Olaf

    2013-09-04

    The human brain shows several characteristics of an efficient communication network architecture, including short communication paths and the existence of modules interlinked by a small set of highly connected regions. Studies of structural networks comprising macroscopic white matter projections have shown that these putative hubs are densely interconnected, giving rise to a spatially distributed and topologically central collective called the "rich club." In parallel, studies of intrinsic brain activity have consistently revealed distinct functional communities or resting-state networks (RSNs), indicative of specialized processing and segregation of neuronal information. However, the pattern of structural connectivity interconnecting these functional RSNs and how such inter-RSN structural connections might bring about functional integration between RSNs remain largely unknown. Combining high-resolution diffusion weighted imaging with resting-state fMRI, we present novel evidence suggesting that the rich club structure plays a central role in cross-linking macroscopic RSNs of the human brain. Rich club hub nodes were present in all functional networks, accounted for a large proportion of "connector nodes," and were found to coincide with regions in which multiple networks overlap. In addition, a large proportion of all inter-RSN connections were found to involve rich club nodes, and these connections participated in a disproportionate number of communication paths linking nodes in different RSNs. Our findings suggest that the brain's rich club serves as a macroscopic anatomical substrate to cross-link functional networks and thus plays an important role in the integration of information between segregated functional domains of the human cortex.

  10. Selective increases of AMPA, NMDA and kainate receptor subunit mRNAs in the hippocampus and orbitofrontal cortex but not in prefrontal cortex of human alcoholics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhe eJin

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Glutamate is the main excitatory transmitter in the human brain. Drugs that affect the glutamatergic signaling will alter neuronal excitability. Ethanol inhibits glutamate receptors. We examined the expression level of glutamate receptor subunit mRNAs in human post-mortem samples from alcoholics and compared the results to brain samples from control subjects. RNA from hippocampal dentate gyrus (HP-DG, orbitofrontal cortex (OFC, and dorso-lateral prefrontal cortex (DL-PFC samples from 21 controls and 19 individuals with chronic alcohol dependence were included in the study. Total RNA was assayed using quantitative RT-PCR. Out of the 16 glutamate receptor subunits, mRNAs encoding two AMPA (2-amino-3-(3-hydroxy-5-methyl-isoxazol-4-ylpropanoic acid receptor subunits GluA2 and GluA3; three kainate receptor subunits GluK2, GluK3 and GluK5 and five NMDA (N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor subunits GluN1, GluN2A, GluN2C, GluN2D and GluN3A were significantly increased in the HP-DG region in alcoholics. In the OFC, mRNA encoding the NMDA receptor subunit GluN3A was increased, whereas in the DL-PFC, no differences in mRNA levels were observed. Our laboratory has previously shown that the expression of genes encoding inhibitory GABA-A receptors is altered in the HP-DG and OFC of alcoholics (Jin et al., 2011. Whether the changes in one neurotransmitter system drives changes in the other or if they change independently is currently not known. The results demonstrate that excessive long-term alcohol consumption is associated with altered expression of genes encoding glutamate receptors in a brain region-specific manner. It is an intriguing possibility that genetic predisposition to alcoholism may contribute to these gene expression changes.

  11. Analysis of neural activity in human motor cortex -- Towards brain machine interface system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Secundo, Lavi

    The discovery of directional tuned neurons in the primary motor cortex has advanced motor research in several domains. For instance, in the area of brain machine interface (BMI), researchers have exploited the robust characteristic of tuned motor neurons to allow monkeys to learn control of various machines. In the first chapter of this work we examine whether this phenomena can be observed using the less invasive method of recording electrocorticographic signals (ECoG) from the surface of a human's brain. Our findings reveal that individual ECoG channels contain complex movement information about the neuronal population. While some ECoG channels are tuned to hand movement direction (direction specific channels), others are associated to movement but do not contain information regarding movement direction (non-direction specific channels). More specifically, directionality can vary temporally and by frequency within one channel. In addition, a handful of channels contain no significant information regarding movement at all. These findings strongly suggest that directional and non-directional regions of cortex can be identified with ECoG and provide solutions to decoding movement at the signal resolution provided by ECoG. In the second chapter we examine the influence of movement context on movement reconstruction accuracy. We recorded neuronal signals recorded from electro-corticography (ECoG) during performance of cued- and self-initiated movements. ECoG signals were used to train a reconstruction algorithm to reconstruct continuous hand movement. We found that both cued- and self-initiated movements could be reconstructed with similar accuracy from the ECoG data. However, while an algorithm trained on the cued task could reconstruct performance on a subsequent cued trial, it failed to reconstruct self-initiated arm movement. The same task-specificity was observed when the algorithm was trained with self-initiated movement data and tested on the cued task. Thus

  12. Activity in human visual and parietal cortex reveals object-based attention in working memory.

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    Peters, Benjamin; Kaiser, Jochen; Rahm, Benjamin; Bledowski, Christoph

    2015-02-25

    Visual attention enables observers to select behaviorally relevant information based on spatial locations, features, or objects. Attentional selection is not limited to physically present visual information, but can also operate on internal representations maintained in working memory (WM) in service of higher-order cognition. However, only little is known about whether attention to WM contents follows the same principles as attention to sensory stimuli. To address this question, we investigated in humans whether the typically observed effects of object-based attention in perception are also evident for object-based attentional selection of internal object representations in WM. In full accordance with effects in visual perception, the key behavioral and neuronal characteristics of object-based attention were observed in WM. Specifically, we found that reaction times were shorter when shifting attention to memory positions located on the currently attended object compared with equidistant positions on a different object. Furthermore, functional magnetic resonance imaging and multivariate pattern analysis of visuotopic activity in visual (areas V1-V4) and parietal cortex revealed that directing attention to one position of an object held in WM also enhanced brain activation for other positions on the same object, suggesting that attentional selection in WM activates the entire object. This study demonstrated that all characteristic features of object-based attention are present in WM and thus follows the same principles as in perception. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/353360-10$15.00/0.

  13. Segregated encoding of reward-identity and stimulus-reward associations in human orbitofrontal cortex.

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    Klein-Flügge, Miriam Cornelia; Barron, Helen Catharine; Brodersen, Kay Henning; Dolan, Raymond J; Behrens, Timothy Edward John

    2013-02-13

    A dominant focus in studies of learning and decision-making is the neural coding of scalar reward value. This emphasis ignores the fact that choices are strongly shaped by a rich representation of potential rewards. Here, using fMRI adaptation, we demonstrate that responses in the human orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) encode a representation of the specific type of food reward predicted by a visual cue. By controlling for value across rewards and by linking each reward with two distinct stimuli, we could test for representations of reward-identity that were independent of associative information. Our results show reward-identity representations in a medial-caudal region of OFC, independent of the associated predictive stimulus. This contrasts with a more rostro-lateral OFC region encoding reward-identity representations tied to the predicate stimulus. This demonstration of adaptation in OFC to reward specific representations opens an avenue for investigation of more complex decision mechanisms that are not immediately accessible in standard analyses, which focus on correlates of average activity.

  14. GABAergic modulation of DC stimulation-induced motor cortex excitability shifts in humans.

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    Nitsche, Michael A; Liebetanz, David; Schlitterlau, Anett; Henschke, Undine; Fricke, Kristina; Frommann, Kai; Lang, Nicolas; Henning, Stefan; Paulus, Walter; Tergau, Frithjof

    2004-05-01

    Weak transcranial DC stimulation (tDCS) of the human motor cortex results in excitability shifts during and after the end of stimulation, which are most probably localized intracortically. Anodal stimulation enhances excitability, whereas cathodal stimulation reduces it. Although the after-effects of tDCS are NMDA receptor-dependent, nothing is known about the involvement of additional receptors. Here we show that pharmacological strengthening of GABAergic inhibition modulates selectively the after-effects elicited by anodal tDCS. Administration of the GABA(A) receptor agonist lorazepam resulted in a delayed, but then enhanced and prolonged anodal tDCS-induced excitability elevation. The initial absence of an excitability enhancement under lorazepam is most probably caused by a loss of the anodal tDCS-generated intracortical diminution of inhibition and enhancement of facilitation, which occurs without pharmacological intervention. The reasons for the late-occurring excitability enhancement remain unclear. Because intracortical inhibition and facilitation are not changed in this phase compared with pre-tDCS values, excitability changes originating from remote cortical or subcortical areas could be involved.

  15. Neurochemical responses to chromatic and achromatic stimuli in the human visual cortex.

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    Bednařík, Petr; Tkáč, Ivan; Giove, Federico; Eberly, Lynn E; Deelchand, Dinesh K; Barreto, Felipe R; Mangia, Silvia

    2018-02-01

    In the present study, we aimed at determining the metabolic responses of the human visual cortex during the presentation of chromatic and achromatic stimuli, known to preferentially activate two separate clusters of neuronal populations (called "blobs" and "interblobs") with distinct sensitivity to color or luminance features. Since blobs and interblobs have different cytochrome-oxidase (COX) content and micro-vascularization level (i.e., different capacities for glucose oxidation), different functional metabolic responses during chromatic vs. achromatic stimuli may be expected. The stimuli were optimized to evoke a similar load of neuronal activation as measured by the bold oxygenation level dependent (BOLD) contrast. Metabolic responses were assessed using functional 1 H MRS at 7 T in 12 subjects. During both chromatic and achromatic stimuli, we observed the typical increases in glutamate and lactate concentration, and decreases in aspartate and glucose concentration, that are indicative of increased glucose oxidation. However, within the detection sensitivity limits, we did not observe any difference between metabolic responses elicited by chromatic and achromatic stimuli. We conclude that the higher energy demands of activated blobs and interblobs are supported by similar increases in oxidative metabolism despite the different capacities of these neuronal populations.

  16. An unavoidable modulation? Sensory attention and human primary motor cortex excitability.

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    Ruge, Diane; Muggleton, Neil; Hoad, Damon; Caronni, Antonio; Rothwell, John C

    2014-09-01

    The link between basic physiology and its modulation by cognitive states, such as attention, is poorly understood. A significant association becomes apparent when patients with movement disorders describe experiences with changing their attention focus and the fundamental effect that this has on their motor symptoms. Moreover, frequently used mental strategies for treating such patients, e.g. with task-specific dystonia, widely lack laboratory-based knowledge about physiological mechanisms. In this largely unexplored field, we looked at how the locus of attention, when it changed between internal (locus hand) and external (visual target), influenced excitability in the primary motor cortex (M1) in healthy humans. Intriguingly, both internal and external attention had the capacity to change M1 excitability. Both led to a reduced stimulation-induced GABA-related inhibition and a change in motor evoked potential size, i.e. an overall increased M1 excitability. These previously unreported findings indicated: (i) that cognitive state differentially interacted with M1 physiology, (ii) that our view of distraction (attention locus shifted towards external or distant location), which is used as a prevention or management strategy for use-dependent motor disorders, is too simple and currently unsupported for clinical application, and (iii) the physiological state reached through attention modulation represents an alternative explanation for frequently reported electrophysiology findings in neuropsychiatric disorders, such as an aberrant inhibition. © 2014 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  17. Probing changes in corticospinal excitability following theta burst stimulation of the human primary motor cortex.

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    Goldsworthy, Mitchell R; Vallence, Ann-Maree; Hodyl, Nicolette A; Semmler, John G; Pitcher, Julia B; Ridding, Michael C

    2016-01-01

    To determine whether the intensity of transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) used to probe changes in corticospinal excitability influences the measured plasticity response to theta burst stimulation (TBS) of the human primary motor cortex. Motor evoked potential (MEP) input/output (I/O) curves were recorded before and following continuous TBS (cTBS) (Experiment 1; n=18) and intermittent TBS (iTBS) (Experiment 2; n=18). The magnitude and consistency of MEP depression induced by cTBS was greatest when probed using stimulus intensities at or above 150% of resting motor threshold (RMT). In contrast, facilitation of MEPs following iTBS was strongest and most consistent at 110% of RMT. The plasticity response to both cTBS and iTBS is influenced by the stimulus intensity used to probe the induced changes in corticospinal excitability. The results highlight the importance of the test stimulus intensity used to assess TBS-induced changes in corticospinal excitability when interpreting neuroplasticity data, and suggest that a number of test intensities may be required to reliably probe the plasticity response. Copyright © 2015 International Federation of Clinical Neurophysiology. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Neural Determinants of Task Performance during Feature-Based Attention in Human Cortex

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    Gong, Mengyuan

    2018-01-01

    Abstract Studies of feature-based attention have associated activity in a dorsal frontoparietal network with putative attentional priority signals. Yet, how this neural activity mediates attentional selection and whether it guides behavior are fundamental questions that require investigation. We reasoned that endogenous fluctuations in the quality of attentional priority should influence task performance. Human subjects detected a speed increment while viewing clockwise (CW) or counterclockwise (CCW) motion (baseline task) or while attending to either direction amid distracters (attention task). In an fMRI experiment, direction-specific neural pattern similarity between the baseline task and the attention task revealed a higher level of similarity for correct than incorrect trials in frontoparietal regions. Using transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), we disrupted posterior parietal cortex (PPC) and found a selective deficit in the attention task, but not in the baseline task, demonstrating the necessity of this cortical area during feature-based attention. These results reveal that frontoparietal areas maintain attentional priority that facilitates successful behavioral selection. PMID:29497703

  19. Pupil size directly modulates the feedforward response in human primary visual cortex independently of attention.

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    Bombeke, Klaas; Duthoo, Wout; Mueller, Sven C; Hopf, Jens-Max; Boehler, C Nico

    2016-02-15

    Controversy revolves around the question of whether psychological factors like attention and emotion can influence the initial feedforward response in primary visual cortex (V1). Although traditionally, the electrophysiological correlate of this response in humans (the C1 component) has been found to be unaltered by psychological influences, a number of recent studies have described attentional and emotional modulations. Yet, research into psychological effects on the feedforward V1 response has neglected possible direct contributions of concomitant pupil-size modulations, which are known to also occur under various conditions of attentional load and emotional state. Here we tested the hypothesis that such pupil-size differences themselves directly affect the feedforward V1 response. We report data from two complementary experiments, in which we used procedures that modulate pupil size without differences in attentional load or emotion while simultaneously recording pupil-size and EEG data. Our results confirm that pupil size indeed directly influences the feedforward V1 response, showing an inverse relationship between pupil size and early V1 activity. While it is unclear in how far this effect represents a functionally-relevant adaptation, it identifies pupil-size differences as an important modulating factor of the feedforward response of V1 and could hence represent a confounding variable in research investigating the neural influence of psychological factors on early visual processing. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Direction of movement is encoded in the human primary motor cortex.

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    Carolien M Toxopeus

    Full Text Available The present study investigated how direction of hand movement, which is a well-described parameter in cerebral organization of motor control, is incorporated in the somatotopic representation of the manual effector system in the human primary motor cortex (M1. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI and a manual step-tracking task we found that activation patterns related to movement in different directions were spatially disjoint within the representation area of the hand on M1. Foci of activation related to specific movement directions were segregated within the M1 hand area; activation related to direction 0° (right was located most laterally/superficially, whereas directions 180° (left and 270° (down elicited activation more medially within the hand area. Activation related to direction 90° was located between the other directions. Moreover, by investigating differences between activations related to movement along the horizontal (0°+180° and vertical (90°+270° axis, we found that activation related to the horizontal axis was located more anterolaterally/dorsally in M1 than for the vertical axis, supporting that activations related to individual movement directions are direction- and not muscle related. Our results of spatially segregated direction-related activations in M1 are in accordance with findings of recent fMRI studies on neural encoding of direction in human M1. Our results thus provide further evidence for a direct link between direction as an organizational principle in sensorimotor transformation and movement execution coded by effector representations in M1.

  1. Area 5 influences excitability within the primary motor cortex in humans.

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    Azra Premji

    Full Text Available In non-human primates, Brodmann's area 5 (BA 5 has direct connectivity with primary motor cortex (M1, is largely dedicated to the representation of the hand and may have evolved with the ability to perform skilled hand movement. Less is known about human BA 5 and its interaction with M1 neural circuits related to hand control. The present study examines the influence of BA 5 on excitatory and inhibitory neural circuitry within M1 bilaterally before and after continuous (cTBS, intermittent (iTBS, and sham theta-burst stimulation (sham TBS over left hemisphere BA 5. Using single and paired-pulse TMS, measurements of motor evoked potentials (MEPs, short interval intracortical inhibition (SICI, and intracortical facilitation (ICF were quantified for the representation of the first dorsal interosseous muscle. Results indicate that cTBS over BA 5 influences M1 excitability such that MEP amplitudes are increased bilaterally for up to one hour. ITBS over BA 5 results in an increase in MEP amplitude contralateral to stimulation with a delayed onset that persists up to one hour. SICI and ICF were unaltered following TBS over BA 5. Similarly, F-wave amplitude and latency were unaltered following cTBS over BA 5. The data suggest that BA 5 alters M1 output directed to the hand by influencing corticospinal neurons and not interneurons that mediate SICI or ICF circuitry. Targeting BA 5 via cTBS and iTBS is a novel mechanism to powerfully modulate activity within M1 and may provide an avenue for investigating hand control in healthy populations and modifying impaired hand function in clinical populations.

  2. Spatial resolution dependence on spectral frequency in human speech cortex electrocorticography

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    Muller, Leah; Hamilton, Liberty S.; Edwards, Erik; Bouchard, Kristofer E.; Chang, Edward F.

    2016-10-01

    Objective. Electrocorticography (ECoG) has become an important tool in human neuroscience and has tremendous potential for emerging applications in neural interface technology. Electrode array design parameters are outstanding issues for both research and clinical applications, and these parameters depend critically on the nature of the neural signals to be recorded. Here, we investigate the functional spatial resolution of neural signals recorded at the human cortical surface. We empirically derive spatial spread functions to quantify the shared neural activity for each frequency band of the electrocorticogram. Approach. Five subjects with high-density (4 mm center-to-center spacing) ECoG grid implants participated in speech perception and production tasks while neural activity was recorded from the speech cortex, including superior temporal gyrus, precentral gyrus, and postcentral gyrus. The cortical surface field potential was decomposed into traditional EEG frequency bands. Signal similarity between electrode pairs for each frequency band was quantified using a Pearson correlation coefficient. Main results. The correlation of neural activity between electrode pairs was inversely related to the distance between the electrodes; this relationship was used to quantify spatial falloff functions for cortical subdomains. As expected, lower frequencies remained correlated over larger distances than higher frequencies. However, both the envelope and phase of gamma and high gamma frequencies (30-150 Hz) are largely uncorrelated (<90%) at 4 mm, the smallest spacing of the high-density arrays. Thus, ECoG arrays smaller than 4 mm have significant promise for increasing signal resolution at high frequencies, whereas less additional gain is achieved for lower frequencies. Significance. Our findings quantitatively demonstrate the dependence of ECoG spatial resolution on the neural frequency of interest. We demonstrate that this relationship is consistent across patients and

  3. GAD2 Alternative Transcripts in the Human Prefrontal Cortex, and in Schizophrenia and Affective Disorders.

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    Kasey N Davis

    Full Text Available Genetic variation and early adverse environmental events work together to increase risk for schizophrenia. γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA, the major inhibitory neurotransmitter in adult mammalian brain, plays a major role in normal brain development, and has been strongly implicated in the pathobiology of schizophrenia. GABA synthesis is controlled by two glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD genes, GAD1 and GAD2, both of which produce a number of alternative transcripts. Genetic variants in the GAD1 gene are associated with increased risk for schizophrenia, and reduced expression of its major transcript in the human dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC. No consistent changes in GAD2 expression have been found in brains from patients with schizophrenia. In this work, with the use of RNA sequencing and PCR technologies, we confirmed and tracked the expression of an alternative truncated transcript of GAD2 (ENST00000428517 in human control DLPFC homogenates across lifespan besides the well-known full length transcript of GAD2. In addition, using quantitative RT-PCR, expression of GAD2 full length and truncated transcripts were measured in the DLPFC of patients with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and major depression. The expression of GAD2 full length transcript is decreased in the DLPFC of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder patients, while GAD2 truncated transcript is increased in bipolar disorder patients but decreased in schizophrenia patients. Moreover, the patients with schizophrenia with completed suicide or positive nicotine exposure showed significantly higher expression of GAD2 full length transcript. Alternative transcripts of GAD2 may be important in the growth and development of GABA-synthesizing neurons as well as abnormal GABA signaling in the DLPFC of patients with schizophrenia and affective disorders.

  4. A non-invasive, quantitative study of broadband spectral responses in human visual cortex.

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    Eline R Kupers

    Full Text Available Currently, non-invasive methods for studying the human brain do not routinely and reliably measure spike-rate-dependent signals, independent of responses such as hemodynamic coupling (fMRI and subthreshold neuronal synchrony (oscillations and event-related potentials. In contrast, invasive methods-microelectrode recordings and electrocorticography (ECoG-have recently measured broadband power elevation in field potentials (~50-200 Hz as a proxy for locally averaged spike rates. Here, we sought to detect and quantify stimulus-related broadband responses using magnetoencephalography (MEG. Extracranial measurements like MEG and EEG have multiple global noise sources and relatively low signal-to-noise ratios; moreover high frequency artifacts from eye movements can be confounded with stimulus design and mistaken for signals originating from brain activity. For these reasons, we developed an automated denoising technique that helps reveal the broadband signal of interest. Subjects viewed 12-Hz contrast-reversing patterns in the left, right, or bilateral visual field. Sensor time series were separated into evoked (12-Hz amplitude and broadband components (60-150 Hz. In all subjects, denoised broadband responses were reliably measured in sensors over occipital cortex, even in trials without microsaccades. The broadband pattern was stimulus-dependent, with greater power contralateral to the stimulus. Because we obtain reliable broadband estimates with short experiments (~20 minutes, and with sufficient signal-to-noise to distinguish responses to different stimuli, we conclude that MEG broadband signals, denoised with our method, offer a practical, non-invasive means for characterizing spike-rate-dependent neural activity for addressing scientific questions about human brain function.

  5. The pattern and time course of somatosensory changes in the human UVB sunburn model reveal the presence of peripheral and central sensitization.

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    Gustorff, Burkhard; Sycha, Thomas; Lieba-Samal, Doris; Rolke, Roman; Treede, Rolf-Detlef; Magerl, Walter

    2013-04-01

    The ultraviolet B (UVB) sunburn model was characterized with a comprehensive battery of quantitative sensory testing (QST). Primary hyperalgesia in UVB-irradiated skin and secondary hyperalgesia in adjacent nonirradiated skin were studied in 22 healthy subjects 24h after irradiation with UVB at 3-fold minimal erythema dose of a skin area 5 cm in diameter at the thigh and compared to mirror-image contralateral control areas. The time course of hyperalgesia over 96 h was studied in a subgroup of 12 subjects. Within the sunburn area, cold hyperesthesia (P=.01), profound generalized hyperalgesia to heat (Psunburn was surrounded by large areas of pinprick hyperalgesia (mean±SEM, 218±32 cm(2)) and a small rim of dynamic mechanical allodynia but no other sensory changes. Although of smaller magnitude, secondary hyperalgesia and dynamic mechanical allodynia adjacent to the UVB-irradiated area were statistically highly significant. Primary and secondary hyperalgesia developed in parallel within hours, peaked after 24-32 h, and lasted for more than 96 h. These data reveal that the UVB sunburn model activates a broad spectrum of peripheral and central sensitization mechanisms and hence is a useful human surrogate model to be used as a screening tool for target engagement in phases 1 and 2a of drug development. Copyright © 2013 International Association for the Study of Pain. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Electrophysiological Evidence for a Sensory Recruitment Model of Somatosensory Working Memory.

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    Katus, Tobias; Grubert, Anna; Eimer, Martin

    2015-12-01

    Sensory recruitment models of working memory assume that information storage is mediated by the same cortical areas that are responsible for the perceptual processing of sensory signals. To test this assumption, we measured somatosensory event-related brain potentials (ERPs) during a tactile delayed match-to-sample task. Participants memorized a tactile sample set at one task-relevant hand to compare it with a subsequent test set on the same hand. During the retention period, a sustained negativity (tactile contralateral delay activity, tCDA) was elicited over primary somatosensory cortex contralateral to the relevant hand. The amplitude of this component increased with memory load and was sensitive to individual limitations in memory capacity, suggesting that the tCDA reflects the maintenance of tactile information in somatosensory working memory. The tCDA was preceded by a transient negativity (N2cc component) with a similar contralateral scalp distribution, which is likely to reflect selection of task-relevant tactile stimuli at the encoding stage. The temporal sequence of N2cc and tCDA components mirrors previous observations from ERP studies of working memory in vision. The finding that the sustained somatosensory delay period activity varies as a function of memory load supports a sensory recruitment model for spatial working memory in touch. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  7. Voronoi-based spatial analysis reveals selective interneuron changes in the cortex of FALS mice.

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    Minciacchi, Diego; Kassa, Roman M; Del Tongo, Claudia; Mariotti, Raffaella; Bentivoglio, Marina

    2009-01-01

    The neurodegenerative disease amyotrophic lateral sclerosis affects lower motoneurons and corticospinal cells. Mice expressing human mutant superoxide dismutase (SOD)1 provide widely investigated models of the familial form of disease, but information on cortical changes in these mice is still limited. We here analyzed the spatial organization of interneurons characterized by parvalbumin immunoreactivity in the motor, somatosensory, and visual cortical areas of SOD1(G93A) mice. Cell number and sociological spatial behavior were assessed by digital charts of cell location in cortical samples, cell counts, and generation of two-dimensional Voronoi diagrams. In end-stage SOD1-mutant mice, an increase of parvalbumin-containing cortical interneurons was found in the motor and somatosensory areas (about 35% and 20%, respectively) with respect to wild-type littermates. Changes in cell spatial distribution, as documented by Voronoi-derived coefficients of variation, indicated increased tendency of parvalbumin cells to aggregate into clusters in the same areas of the SOD1-mutant cortex. Counts and coefficients of variation of parvalbumin cells in the visual cortex gave instead similar results in SOD1-mutant and wild-type mice. Analyses of motor and somatosensory areas in presymptomatic SOD1-mutant mice provided findings very similar to those obtained at end-stage, indicating early changes of interneurons in these cortical areas during the pathology. Altogether the data reveal in the SOD1-mutant mouse cortex an altered architectonic pattern of interneurons, which selectively affects areas involved in motor control. The findings, which can be interpreted as pathogenic factors or early disease-related adaptations, point to changes in the cortical regulation and modulation of the motor circuit during motoneuron disease.

  8. Sexually Monomorphic Maps and Dimorphic Responses in Rat Genital Cortex.

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    Lenschow, Constanze; Copley, Sean; Gardiner, Jayne M; Talbot, Zoe N; Vitenzon, Ariel; Brecht, Michael

    2016-01-11

    Mammalian external genitals show sexual dimorphism [1, 2] and can change size and shape upon sexual arousal. Genitals feature prominently in the oldest pieces of figural art [3] and phallic depictions of penises informed psychoanalytic thought about sexuality [4, 5]. Despite this longstanding interest, the neural representations of genitals are still poorly understood [6]. In somatosensory cortex specifically, many studies did not detect any cortical representation of genitals [7-9]. Studies in humans debate whether genitals are represented displaced below the foot of the cortical body map [10-12] or whether they are represented somatotopically [13-15]. We wondered what a high-resolution mapping of genital representations might tell us about the sexual differentiation of the mammalian brain. We identified genital responses in rat somatosensory cortex in a region previously assigned as arm/leg cortex. Genital responses were more common in males than in females. Despite such response dimorphism, we observed a stunning anatomical monomorphism of cortical penis and clitoris input maps revealed by cytochrome-oxidase-staining of cortical layer 4. Genital representations were somatotopic and bilaterally symmetric, and their relative size increased markedly during puberty. Size, shape, and erect posture give the cortical penis representation a phallic appearance pointing to a role in sexually aroused states. Cortical genital neurons showed unusual multi-body-part responses and sexually dimorphic receptive fields. Specifically, genital neurons were co-activated by distant body regions, which are touched during mounting in the respective sex. Genital maps indicate a deep homology of penis and clitoris representations in line with a fundamentally bi-sexual layout [16] of the vertebrate brain. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Evidence for Non-Opponent Coding of Colour Information in Human Visual Cortex: Selective Loss of "Green" Sensitivity in a Subject with Damaged Ventral Occipito-Temporal Cortex.

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    Rauscher, Franziska G; Plant, Gordon T; James-Galton, Merle; Barbur, John L

    2011-01-01

    Damage to ventral occipito-temporal extrastriate visual cortex leads to the syndrome of prosopagnosia often with coexisting cerebral achromatopsia. A patient with this syndrome resulting in a left upper homonymous quadrantanopia, prosopagnosia, and incomplete achromatopsia is described. Chromatic sensitivity was assessed at a number of locations in the intact visual field using a dynamic luminance contrast masking technique that isolates the use of colour signals. In normal subjects chromatic detection thresholds form an elliptical contour when plotted in the Commission Internationale d'Eclairage, (x-y), chromaticity diagram. Because the extraction of colour signals in early visual processing involves opponent mechanisms, subjects with Daltonism (congenital red/green loss of sensitivity) show symmetric increase in thresholds towards the long wavelength ("red") and middle wavelength ("green") regions of the spectrum locus. This is also the case with acquired loss of chromatic sensitivity as a result of retinal or optic nerve disease. Our patient's results were an exception to this rule. Whilst his chromatic sensitivity in the central region of the visual field was reduced symmetrically for both "red/green" and "yellow/blue" directions in colour space, the subject's lower left quadrant showed a marked asymmetry in "red/green" thresholds with the greatest loss of sensitivity towards the "green" region of the spectrum locus. This spatially localized asymmetric loss of "green" but not "red" sensitivity has not been reported previously in human vision. Such loss is consistent with selective damage of neural substrates in the visual cortex that process colour information, but are spectrally non-opponent.

  10. Avalanche analysis from multi-electrode ensemble recordings in cat, monkey and human cerebral cortex during wakefulness and sleep.

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    Nima eDehghani

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Self-organized critical states are found in many natural systems, from earthquakes to forest fires, they have also been observed in neural systems, particularly, in neuronal cultures. However, the presence of critical states in the awake brain remains controversial. Here, we compared avalanche analyses performed on different in vivo preparations during wakefulness, slow-wave sleep and REM sleep, using high-density electrode arrays in cat motor cortex (96 electrodes, monkey motor cortex and premotor cortex and human temporal cortex (96 electrodes in epileptic patients. In neuronal avalanches defined from units (up to 160 single units, the size of avalanches never clearly scaled as power-law, but rather scaled exponentially or displayed intermediate scaling. We also analyzed the dynamics of local field potentials (LFPs and in particular LFP negative peaks (nLFPs among the different electrodes (up to 96 sites in temporal cortex or up to 128 sites in adjacent motor and pre-motor cortices. In this case, the avalanches defined from nLFPs displayed power-law scaling in double logarithmic representations, as reported previously in monkey. However, avalanche defined as positive LFP (pLFP peaks, which are less directly related to neuronal firing, also displayed apparent power-law scaling. Closer examination of this scaling using the more reliable cumulative distribution function (CDF and other rigorous statistical measures, did not confirm power-law scaling. The same pattern was seen for cats, monkey and human, as well as for different brain states of wakefulness and sleep. We also tested other alternative distributions. Multiple exponential fitting yielded optimal fits of the avalanche dynamics with bi-exponential distributions. Collectively, these results show no clear evidence for power-law scaling or self-organized critical states in the awake and sleeping brain of mammals, from cat to man.

  11. Frequency-specific attentional modulation in human primary auditory cortex and midbrain

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Riecke, Lars; Peters, Judith C; Valente, Giancarlo; Poser, Benedikt A; Kemper, Valentin G; Formisano, Elia; Sorger, Bettina

    2018-01-01

    Paying selective attention to an audio frequency selectively enhances activity within primary auditory cortex (PAC) at the tonotopic site (frequency channel) representing that frequency. Animal PAC neurons achieve this 'frequency-specific attentional spotlight' by adapting their frequency tuning,

  12. Induction of plasticity in the human motor cortex by pairing an auditory stimulus with TMS

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    Paul Fredrick Sowman

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Acoustic stimuli can cause a transient increase in the excitability of the motor cortex. The current study leverages this phenomenon to develop a method for testing the integrity of auditorimotor integration and the capacity for auditorimotor plasticity. We demonstrate that appropriately timed transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS of the hand area, paired with auditorily mediated excitation of the motor cortex, induces an enhancement of motor cortex excitability that lasts beyond the time of stimulation. This result demonstrates for the first time that paired associative stimulation (PAS -induced plasticity within the motor cortex is applicable with auditory stimuli. We propose that the method developed here might provide a useful tool for future studies that measure auditory-motor connectivity in communication disorders.

  13. Persistent neural activity in auditory cortex is related to auditory working memory in humans and nonhuman primates.

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    Huang, Ying; Matysiak, Artur; Heil, Peter; König, Reinhard; Brosch, Michael

    2016-07-20

    Working memory is the cognitive capacity of short-term storage of information for goal-directed behaviors. Where and how this capacity is implemented in the brain are unresolved questions. We show that auditory cortex stores information by persistent changes of neural activity. We separated activity related to working memory from activity related to other mental processes by having humans and monkeys perform different tasks with varying working memory demands on the same sound sequences. Working memory was reflected in the spiking activity of individual neurons in auditory cortex and in the activity of neuronal populations, that is, in local field potentials and magnetic fields. Our results provide direct support for the idea that temporary storage of information recruits the same brain areas that also process the information. Because similar activity was observed in the two species, the cellular bases of some auditory working memory processes in humans can be studied in monkeys.

  14. Predictability of painful stimulation modulates the somatosensory-evoked potential in the rat

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schaap, M.W.H.; van Oostrom, H.; Doornenbal, A.; Baars, A.M.; Arndt, S.S.; Hellebrekers, L.J.

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Somatosensory-evoked potentials (SEPs) are used in humans and animals to increase knowledge about nociception and pain. Since the SEP in humans increases when noxious stimuli are administered unpredictably, predictability potentially influences the SEP in animals as well. To assess the

  15. Implied motion because of instability in Hokusai Manga activates the human motion-sensitive extrastriate visual cortex: an fMRI study of the impact of visual art.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osaka, Naoyuki; Matsuyoshi, Daisuke; Ikeda, Takashi; Osaka, Mariko

    2010-03-10

    The recent development of cognitive neuroscience has invited inference about the neurosensory events underlying the experience of visual arts involving implied motion. We report functional magnetic resonance imaging study demonstrating activation of the human extrastriate motion-sensitive cortex by static images showing implied motion because of instability. We used static line-drawing cartoons of humans by Hokusai Katsushika (called 'Hokusai Manga'), an outstanding Japanese cartoonist as well as famous Ukiyoe artist. We found 'Hokusai Manga' with implied motion by depicting human bodies that are engaged in challenging tonic posture significantly activated the motion-sensitive visual cortex including MT+ in the human extrastriate cortex, while an illustration that does not imply motion, for either humans or objects, did not activate these areas under the same tasks. We conclude that motion-sensitive extrastriate cortex would be a critical region for perception of implied motion in instability.

  16. A probabilistic map of the human ventral sensorimotor cortex using electrical stimulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Breshears, Jonathan D; Molinaro, Annette M; Chang, Edward F

    2015-08-01

    The human ventral sensorimotor cortex (vSMC) is involved in facial expression, mastication, and swallowing, as well as the dynamic and highly coordinated movements of human speech production. However, vSMC organization remains poorly understood, and previously published population-driven maps of its somatotopy do not accurately reflect the variability across individuals in a quantitative, probabilistic fashion. The goal of this study was to describe the responses to electrical stimulation of the vSMC, generate probabilistic maps of function in the vSMC, and quantify the variability across individuals. Photographic, video, and stereotactic MRI data of intraoperative electrical stimulation of the vSMC were collected for 33 patients undergoing awake craniotomy. Stimulation sites were converted to a 2D coordinate system based on anatomical landmarks. Motor, sensory, and speech stimulation responses were reviewed and classified. Probabilistic maps of stimulation responses were generated, and spatial variance was quantified. In 33 patients, the authors identified 194 motor, 212 sensory, 61 speech-arrest, and 27 mixed responses. Responses were complex, stereotyped, and mostly nonphysiological movements, involving hand, orofacial, and laryngeal musculature. Within individuals, the presence of oral movement representations varied; however, the dorsal-ventral order was always preserved. The most robust motor responses were jaw (probability 0.85), tongue (0.64), lips (0.58), and throat (0.52). Vocalizations were seen in 6 patients (0.18), more dorsally near lip and dorsal throat areas. Sensory responses were spatially dispersed; however, patients' subjective reports were highly precise in localization within the mouth. The most robust responses included tongue (0.82) and lips (0.42). The probability of speech arrest was 0.85, highest 15-20 mm anterior to the central sulcus and just dorsal to the sylvian fissure, in the anterior precentral gyrus or pars opercularis. The

  17. Bilateral somatosensory evoked potentials following intermittent theta-burst repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ziluk Angela

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Intermittent theta-burst stimulation (iTBS is a form of repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation that may alter cortical excitability in the primary somatosensory cortex (SI. The present study investigated the effects of iTBS on subcortical and early cortical somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs recorded over left, iTBS stimulated SI and the right-hemisphere non-stimulated SI. SEPs were recorded before and at 5, 15, and 25 minutes following iTBS. Results Compared to pre-iTBS, the amplitude of cortical potential N20/P25 was significantly increased for 5 minutes from non-stimulated SI and for 15 to 25 minutes from stimulated SI. Subcortical potentials recorded bilaterally remained unaltered following iTBS. Conclusion We conclude that iTBS increases the cortical excitability of SI bilaterally and does not alter thalamocortical afferent input to SI. ITBS may provide one avenue to induce cortical plasticity in the somatosensory cortex.

  18. Evidence for cue-independent spatial representation in the human auditory cortex during active listening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Higgins, Nathan C; McLaughlin, Susan A; Rinne, Teemu; Stecker, G Christopher

    2017-09-05

    Few auditory functions are as important or as universal as the capacity for auditory spatial awareness (e.g., sound localization). That ability relies on sensitivity to acoustical cues-particularly interaural time and level differences (ITD and ILD)-that correlate with sound-source locations. Under nonspatial listening conditions, cortical sensitivity to ITD and ILD takes the form of broad contralaterally dominated response functions. It is unknown, however, whether that sensitivity reflects representations of the specific physical cues or a higher-order representation of auditory space (i.e., integrated cue processing), nor is it known whether responses to spatial cues are modulated by active spatial listening. To investigate, sensitivity to parametrically varied ITD or ILD cues was measured using fMRI during spatial and nonspatial listening tasks. Task type varied across blocks where targets were presented in one of three dimensions: auditory location, pitch, or visual brightness. Task effects were localized primarily to lateral posterior superior temporal gyrus (pSTG) and modulated binaural-cue response functions differently in the two hemispheres. Active spatial listening (location tasks) enhanced both contralateral and ipsilateral responses in the right hemisphere but maintained or enhanced contralateral dominance in the left hemisphere. Two observations suggest integrated processing of ITD and ILD. First, overlapping regions in medial pSTG exhibited significant sensitivity to both cues. Second, successful classification of multivoxel patterns was observed for both cue types and-critically-for cross-cue classification. Together, these results suggest a higher-order representation of auditory space in the human auditory cortex that at least partly integrates the specific underlying cues.

  19. Prandial states modify the reactivity of the gustatory cortex using gustatory evoked potentials in humans

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    Agnès eJACQUIN-PIQUES

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Previous functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging studies evaluated the role of satiety on cortical taste area activity and highlighted decreased activation in the orbito-frontal cortex when food was eaten until satiation. The modulation of orbito-frontal neurons (secondary taste area by ad libitum food intake has been associated with the pleasantness of the food’s flavor. The insula and frontal operculum (primary taste area are also involved in reward processing. The aim was to compare human gustatory evoked potentials (GEP recorded in the primary and secondary gustatory cortices in a fasted state with those after food intake. Fifteen healthy volunteers were enrolled in this observational study. In each of two sessions, two GEP recordings were performed (at 11:00 am and 1:30 pm in response to sucrose gustatory stimulation, and a sucrose-gustatory threshold was determined. During one session, a standard lunch was provided between the two GEP recordings. During the other session, subjects had nothing to eat. Hunger sensation, wanting, liking and the perception of the solution’s intensity were evaluated with visual analogue scales. GEP latencies measured in the Pz (p<0.001, Cz (p<0.01, Fz (p<0.001 recordings (primary taste area were longer after lunch than in the pre-prandial condition. Fp1 and Fp2 latencies (secondary taste area tended to be longer after lunch, but the difference was not significant. No difference was observed for the sucrose-gustatory threshold regardless of the session and time. Modifications in the primary taste area activity during the post-prandial period occurred regardless of the nature of the food eaten and could represent the activity of the frontal operculum and insula, which was recently shown to be modulated by gut signals (GLP-1, CCK, ghrelin, or insulin through vagal afferent neurons or metabolic changes of the internal milieu after nutrient absorption. This trial was registered at clinicalstrials.gov as NCT

  20. Monaural and binaural contributions to interaural-level-difference sensitivity in human auditory cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stecker, G Christopher; McLaughlin, Susan A; Higgins, Nathan C

    2015-10-15

    Whole-brain functional magnetic resonance imaging was used to measure blood-oxygenation-level-dependent (BOLD) responses in human auditory cortex (AC) to sounds with intensity varying independently in the left and right ears. Echoplanar images were acquired at 3 Tesla with sparse image acquisition once per 12-second block of sound stimulation. Combinations of binaural intensity and stimulus presentation rate were varied between blocks, and selected to allow measurement of response-intensity functions in three configurations: monaural 55-85 dB SPL, binaural 55-85 dB SPL with intensity equal in both ears, and binaural with average binaural level of 70 dB SPL and interaural level differences (ILD) ranging ±30 dB (i.e., favoring the left or right ear). Comparison of response functions equated for contralateral intensity revealed that BOLD-response magnitudes (1) generally increased with contralateral intensity, consistent with positive drive of the BOLD response by the contralateral ear, (2) were larger for contralateral monaural stimulation than for binaural stimulation, consistent with negative effects (e.g., inhibition) of ipsilateral input, which were strongest in the left hemisphere, and (3) also increased with ipsilateral intensity when contralateral input was weak, consistent with additional, positive, effects of ipsilateral stimulation. Hemispheric asymmetries in the spatial extent and overall magnitude of BOLD responses were generally consistent with previous studies demonstrating greater bilaterality of responses in the right hemisphere and stricter contralaterality in the left hemisphere. Finally, comparison of responses to fast (40/s) and slow (5/s) stimulus presentation rates revealed significant rate-dependent adaptation of the BOLD response that varied across ILD values. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  1. MOBIUS-STRIP-LIKE COLUMNAR FUNCTIONAL CONNECTIONS ARE REVEALED IN SOMATO-SENSORY RECEPTIVE FIELD CENTROIDS.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James Joseph Wright

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Receptive fields of neurons in the forelimb region of areas 3b and 1 of primary somatosensory cortex, in cats and monkeys, were mapped using extracellular recordings obtained sequentially from nearly radial penetrations. Locations of the field centroids indicated the presence of a functional system, in which cortical homotypic representations of the limb surfaces are entwined in three-dimensional Mobius-strip-like patterns of synaptic connections. Boundaries of somatosensory receptive field in nested groups irregularly overlie the centroid order, and are interpreted as arising from the superposition of learned connections upon the embryonic order. Since the theory of embryonic synaptic self-organisation used to model these results was devised and earlier used to explain findings in primary visual cortex, the present findings suggest the theory may be of general application throughout cortex, and may reveal a modular functional synaptic system, which, only in some parts of the cortex, and in some species, is manifest as anatomical ordering into columns.

  2. The contribution of CXCL12-expressing radial glia cells to neuro-vascular patterning during human cerebral cortex development

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    Mariella eErrede

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available This study was conducted on human developing brain by laser confocal and transmission electron microscopy to make a detailed analysis of important features of blood-brain barrier microvessels and possible control mechanisms of vessel growth and differentiation during cerebral cortex vascularization. The blood-brain barrier status of cortex microvessels was examined at a defined stage of cortex development, at the end of neuroblast waves of migration and before cortex lamination, with blood-brain barrier-endothelial cell markers, namely tight junction proteins (occludin and claudin-5 and influx and efflux transporters (Glut-1 and P-glycoprotein, the latter supporting evidence for functional effectiveness of the fetal blood-brain barrier. According to the well-known roles of astroglia cells on microvessel growth and differentiation, the early composition of astroglia/endothelial cell relationships was analysed by detecting the appropriate astroglia, endothelial, and pericyte markers. GFAP, chemokine CXCL12, and connexin 43 (Cx43 were utilized as markers of radial glia cells, CD105 (endoglin as a marker of angiogenically activated endothelial cells, and proteoglycan NG2 as a marker of immature pericytes. Immunolabeling for CXCL12 showed the highest level of the ligand in radial glial fibres in contact with the growing cortex microvessels. These specialized contacts, recognizable on both perforating radial vessels and growing collaterals, appeared as CXCL12-reactive en passant, symmetrical and asymmetrical vessel-specific RG fibre swellings. At the highest confocal resolution, these RG varicosities showed a CXCL12-reactive dot-like content whose microvesicular nature was confirmed by ultrastructural observations. A further analysis of radial glial varicosities reveals colocalization of CXCL12 with connexin Cx43, which is possibly implicated in vessel-specific chemokine signalling.

  3. Ventromedial Frontal Cortex Is Critical for Guiding Attention to Reward-Predictive Visual Features in Humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaidya, Avinash R; Fellows, Lesley K

    2015-09-16

    Adaptively interacting with our environment requires extracting information that will allow us to successfully predict reward. This can be a challenge, particularly when there are many candidate cues, and when rewards are probabilistic. Recent work has demonstrated that visual attention is allocated to stimulus features that have been associated with reward on previous trials. The ventromedial frontal lobe (VMF) has been implicated in learning in dynamic environments of this kind, but the mechanism by which this region influences this process is not clear. Here, we hypothesized that the VMF plays a critical role in guiding attention to reward-predictive stimulus features based on feedback. We tested the effects of VMF damage in human subjects on a visual search task in which subjects were primed to attend to task-irrelevant colors associated with different levels of reward, incidental to the search task. Consistent with previous work, we found that distractors had a greater influence on reaction time when they appeared in colors associated with high reward in the previous trial compared with colors associated with low reward in healthy control subjects and patients with prefrontal damage sparing the VMF. However, this reward modulation of attentional priming was absent in patients with VMF damage. Thus, an intact VMF is necessary for directing attention based on experience with cue-reward associations. We suggest that this region plays a role in selecting reward-predictive cues to facilitate future learning. There has been a swell of interest recently in the ventromedial frontal cortex (VMF), a brain region critical to associative learning. However, the underlying mechanism by which this region guides learning is not well understood. Here, we tested the effects of damage to this region in humans on a task in which rewards were linked incidentally to visual features, resulting in trial-by-trial attentional priming. Controls and subjects with prefrontal damage

  4. Short-term and long-term plasticity interaction in human primary motor cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iezzi, Ennio; Suppa, Antonio; Conte, Antonella; Li Voti, Pietro; Bologna, Matteo; Berardelli, Alfredo

    2011-05-01

    Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) over primary motor cortex (M1) elicits changes in motor evoked potential (MEP) size thought to reflect short- and long-term forms of synaptic plasticity, resembling short-term potentiation (STP) and long-term potentiation/depression (LTP/LTD) observed in animal experiments. We designed this study in healthy humans to investigate whether STP as elicited by 5-Hz rTMS interferes with LTP/LTD-like plasticity induced by intermittent and continuous theta-burst stimulation (iTBS and cTBS). The effects induced by 5-Hz rTMS and iTBS/cTBS were indexed as changes in MEP size. We separately evaluated changes induced by 5-Hz rTMS, iTBS and cTBS applied alone and those induced by iTBS and cTBS delivered after priming 5-Hz rTMS. Interactions between 5-Hz rTMS and iTBS/cTBS were investigated under several experimental conditions by delivering 5-Hz rTMS at suprathreshold and subthreshold intensity, allowing 1 and 5 min intervals to elapse between 5-Hz rTMS and TBS, and delivering one and ten 5-Hz rTMS trains. We also investigated whether 5-Hz rTMS induces changes in intracortical excitability tested with paired-pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation. When given alone, 5-Hz rTMS induced short-lasting and iTBS/cTBS induced long-lasting changes in MEP amplitudes. When M1 was primed with 10 suprathreshold 5-Hz rTMS trains at 1 min before iTBS or cTBS, the iTBS/cTBS-induced after-effects disappeared. The 5-Hz rTMS left intracortical excitability unchanged. We suggest that STP elicited by suprathreshold 5-Hz rTMS abolishes iTBS/cTBS-induced LTP/LTD-like plasticity through non-homeostatic metaplasticity mechanisms. Our study provides new information on interactions between short-term and long-term rTMS-induced plasticity in human M1. © 2011 The Authors. European Journal of Neuroscience © 2011 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  5. Walk-related mimic word activates the extrastriate visual cortex in the human brain: an fMRI study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osaka, Naoyuki

    2009-03-02

    I present an fMRI study demonstrating that a mimic word highly suggestive of human walking, heard by the ear with eyes closed, significantly activates the visual cortex located in extrastriate occipital region (BA19, 18) and superior temporal sulcus (STS) while hearing non-sense words that do not imply walk under the same task does not activate these areas in humans. I concluded that BA19 and 18 would be a critical region for generating visual images of walking and related intentional stance, respectively, evoked by an onomatopoeia word that implied walking.

  6. Functional organization of the face-sensitive areas in human occipital-temporal cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shao, Hanyu; Weng, Xuchu; He, Sheng

    2017-08-15

    Human occipital-temporal cortex features several areas sensitive to faces, presumably forming the biological substrate for face perception. To date, there are piecemeal insights regarding the functional organization of these regions. They have come, however, from studies that are far from homogeneous with regard to the regions involved, the experimental design, and the data analysis approach. In order to provide an overall view of the functional organization of the face-sensitive areas, it is necessary to conduct a comprehensive study that taps into the pivotal functional properties of all the face-sensitive areas, within the context of the same experimental design, and uses multiple data analysis approaches. In this study, we identified the most robustly activated face-sensitive areas in bilateral occipital-temporal cortices (i.e., AFP, aFFA, pFFA, OFA, pcSTS, pSTS) and systemically compared their regionally averaged activation and multivoxel activation patterns to 96 images from 16 object categories, including faces and non-faces. This condition-rich and single-image analysis approach critically samples the functional properties of a brain region, allowing us to test how two basic functional properties, namely face-category selectivity and face-exemplar sensitivity are distributed among these regions. Moreover, by examining the correlational structure of neural responses to the 96 images, we characterize their interactions in the greater face-processing network. We found that (1) r-pFFA showed the highest face-category selectivity, followed by l-pFFA, bilateral aFFA and OFA, and then bilateral pcSTS. In contrast, bilateral AFP and pSTS showed low face-category selectivity; (2) l-aFFA, l-pcSTS and bilateral AFP showed evidence of face-exemplar sensitivity; (3) r-OFA showed high overall response similarities with bilateral LOC and r-pFFA, suggesting it might be a transitional stage between general and face-selective information processing; (4) r-aFFA showed high

  7. Hyper-connectivity and hyper-plasticity in the medial prefrontal cortex in the valproic Acid animal model of autism

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rinaldi, Tania; Perrodin, Catherine; Markram, Henry

    2008-01-01

    of synapses. The microcircuit alterations found in the prefrontal cortex are therefore similar to the alterations previously found in the somatosensory cortex. Hyper-connectivity and hyper-plasticity in the prefrontal cortex implies hyper-functionality of one of the highest order processing regions...

  8. Regions of mid-level human visual cortex sensitive to the global coherence of local image patches.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mannion, Damien J; Kersten, Daniel J; Olman, Cheryl A

    2014-08-01

    The global structural arrangement and spatial layout of the visual environment must be derived from the integration of local signals represented in the lower tiers of the visual system. This interaction between the spatially local and global properties of visual stimulation underlies many of our visual capacities, and how this is achieved in the brain is a central question for visual and cognitive neuroscience. Here, we examine the sensitivity of regions of the posterior human brain to the global coordination of spatially displaced naturalistic image patches. We presented observers with image patches in two circular apertures to the left and right of central fixation, with the patches drawn from either the same (coherent condition) or different (noncoherent condition) extended image. Using fMRI at 7T (n = 5), we find that global coherence affected signal amplitude in regions of dorsal mid-level cortex. Furthermore, we find that extensive regions of mid-level visual cortex contained information in their local activity pattern that could discriminate coherent and noncoherent stimuli. These findings indicate that the global coordination of local naturalistic image information has important consequences for the processing in human mid-level visual cortex.

  9. Thalamic deactivation at sleep onset precedes that of the cerebral cortex in humans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Magnin, Michel; Rey, Marc; Bastuji, Hélène; Guillemant, Philippe; Mauguière, François; Garcia-Larrea, Luis

    2010-01-01

    Thalamic and cortical activities are assumed to be time-locked throughout all vigilance states. Using simultaneous intracortical and intrathalamic recordings, we demonstrate here that the thalamic deactivation occurring at sleep onset most often precedes that of the cortex by several minutes, whereas reactivation of both structures during awakening is synchronized. Delays between thalamus and cortex deactivations can vary from one subject to another when a similar cortical region is considered. In addition, heterogeneity in activity levels throughout the cortical mantle is larger than previously thought during the descent into sleep. Thus, asynchronous thalamo-cortical deactivation while falling asleep probably explains the production of hypnagogic hallucinations by a still-activated cortex and the common self-overestimation of the time needed to fall asleep. PMID:20142493

  10. Magnetoencephalographic Imaging of Auditory and Somatosensory Cortical Responses in Children with Autism and Sensory Processing Dysfunction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carly Demopoulos

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available This study compared magnetoencephalographic (MEG imaging-derived indices of auditory and somatosensory cortical processing in children aged 8–12 years with autism spectrum disorder (ASD; N = 18, those with sensory processing dysfunction (SPD; N = 13 who do not meet ASD criteria, and typically developing control (TDC; N = 19 participants. The magnitude of responses to both auditory and tactile stimulation was comparable across all three groups; however, the M200 latency response from the left auditory cortex was significantly delayed in the ASD group relative to both the TDC and SPD groups, whereas the somatosensory response of the ASD group was only delayed relative to TDC participants. The SPD group did not significantly differ from either group in terms of somatosensory latency, suggesting that participants with SPD may have an intermediate phenotype between ASD and TDC with regard to somatosensory processing. For the ASD group, correlation analyses indicated that the left M200 latency delay was significantly associated with performance on the WISC-IV Verbal Comprehension Index as well as the DSTP Acoustic-Linguistic index. Further, these cortical auditory response delays were not associated with somatosensory cortical response delays or cognitive processing speed in the ASD group, suggesting that auditory delays in ASD are domain specific rather than associated with generalized processing delays. The specificity of these auditory delays to the ASD group, in addition to their correlation with verbal abilities, suggests that auditory sensory dysfunction may be implicated in communication symptoms in ASD, motivating further research aimed at understanding the impact of sensory dysfunction on the developing brain.

  11. Double-bouquet cells in the monkey and human cerebral cortex with special reference to areas 17 and 18.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeFelipe, Javier; Ballesteros-Yáñez, Inmaculada; Inda, Maria Carmen; Muñoz, Alberto

    2006-01-01

    The detailed microanatomical study of the human cerebral cortex began in 1899 with the experiments of Santiago Ramón y Cajal, who applied the Golgi method to define the structure of the visual, motor, auditory and olfactory cortex. In the first article of this series, he described a special type of interneuron in the visual cortex capable of exerting its influence in the vertical dimension. These neurons are now more commonly referred to as double-bouquet cells (DBCs). The DBCs are readily distinguished owing to their characteristic axons that give rise to tightly interwoven bundles of long, vertically oriented axonal collaterals resembling a horsetail (DBC horsetail). Nevertheless, the most striking characteristic of these neurons is that they are so numerous and regularly distributed that the DBC horsetails form a microcolumnar structure. In addition, DBCs establish hundreds of inhibitory synapses within a very narrow column of cortical tissue. These features have generated considerable interest in DBCs over recent years, principally among those researchers interested in the analysis of cortical circuits. In the present chapter, we shall discuss the morphology, synaptic connections and neurochemical features of DBCs that have been defined through the study of these cells in different cortical areas and species. We will mainly consider the immunocytochemical studies of DBCs that have been carried out in the visual cortex (areas 17 and 18) of human and macaque monkey. We will see that there are important differences in the morphology, number and distribution of DBC horsetails between areas 17 and 18 in the primate. This suggests important differences in the microcolumnar organization between these areas, the functional significance of which awaits detailed correlative physiological and microanatomical studies.

  12. COMMUNICATION Designing a somatosensory neural prosthesis: percepts evoked by different patterns of thalamic stimulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heming, Ethan; Sanden, Andrew; Kiss, Zelma H. T.

    2010-12-01

    Although major advances have been made in the development of motor prostheses, fine motor control requires intuitive somatosensory feedback. Here we explored whether a thalamic site for a somatosensory neural prosthetic could provide natural somatic sensation to humans. Different patterns of electrical stimulation (obtained from thalamic spike trains) were applied in patients undergoing deep brain stimulation surgery. Changes in pattern produced different sensations, while preserving somatotopic representation. While most percepts were reported as 'unnatural', some stimulations produced more 'natural' sensations than others. However, the additional patterns did not elicit more 'natural' percepts than high-frequency (333 Hz) electrical stimulation. These features suggest that despite some limitations, the thalamus may be a feasible site for a somatosensory neural prosthesis and different stimulation patterns may be useful in its development.

  13. Porosity, Mineralization, Tissue Type and Morphology Interactions at the Human Tibial Cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hampson, Naomi A.

    Prior research has shown a relationship between tibia robustness (ratio of cross-sectional area to bone length) and stress fracture risk, with less robust bones having a higher risk, which may indicate a compensatory increase in elastic modulus to increase bending strength. Previous studies of human tibiae have shown higher ash content in slender bones. In this study, the relationships between variations in volumetric porosity, ash content, tissue mineral density, secondary bone tissue, and cross sectional geometry, were investigated in order to better understand the tissue level adaptations that may occur in the establishment of cross-sectional properties. In this research, significant differences were found between porosity, ash content, and tissue type around the cortex between robust and slender bones, suggesting that there was a level of co-adaption occurring. Variation in porosity correlated with robustness, and explained large parts of the variation in tissue mineral density. The nonlinear relationship between porosity and ash content may support that slender bones compensate for poor geometry by increasing ash content through reduced remodeling, while robust individuals increase porosity to decrease mass, but only to a point. These results suggest that tissue level organization plays a compensatory role in the establishment of adult bone mass, and may contribute to differences in bone aging between different bone phenotypes. The results suggest that slender individuals have significantly less remodeled bone, however the proportion of remodeled bone was not uniform around the tibia. In the complex results of the study of 38% vs. 66% sites the distal site was subject to higher strains than the 66% site, indicating both local and global regulators may be affecting overall remodeling rates and need to be teased apart in future studies. This research has broad clinical implications on the diagnosis and treatment of fragility fractures. The relationships that

  14. RTTN mutations link primary cilia function to organization of the human cerebral cortex

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    S.K. Kia; E. Verbeek (Elly); M.P. Engelen (Erik); R. Schot (Rachel); R.A. Poot (Raymond); I.F.M. de Coo (René); M. Leguin (Maarten); C.J. Poulton (Cathryn); F. Pourfarzad, F. (Farzin); F.G. Grosveld (Frank); A. Brehm (António); M.C.Y. de Wit (Marie Claire); R. Oegema (Renske); W.B. Dobyns (William); F.W. Verheijen (Frans); G.M.S. Mancini (Grazia)

    2012-01-01

    textabstractPolymicrogyria is a malformation of the developing cerebral cortex caused by abnormal organization and characterized by many small gyri and fusion of the outer molecular layer. We have identified autosomal-recessive mutations in RTTN, encoding Rotatin, in individuals with bilateral

  15. Changes in thickness and surface area of the human cortex and their relationship with intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schnack, Hugo G; van Haren, Neeltje E M; Brouwer, Rachel M; Evans, Alan; Durston, Sarah; Boomsma, Dorret I; Kahn, René S; Hulshoff Pol, Hilleke E

    2015-06-01

    Changes in cortical thickness over time have been related to intelligence, but whether changes in cortical surface area are related to general cognitive functioning is unknown. We therefore examined the relationship between intelligence quotient (IQ) and changes in cortical thickness and surface over time in 504 healthy subjects. At 10 years of age, more intelligent children have a slightly thinner cortex than children with a lower IQ. This relationship becomes more pronounced with increasing age: with higher IQ, a faster thinning of the cortex is found over time. In the more intelligent young adults, this relationship reverses so that by the age of 42 a thicker cortex is associated with higher intelligence. In contrast, cortical surface is larger in more intelligent children at the age of 10. The cortical surface is still expanding, reaching its maximum area during adolescence. With higher IQ, cortical expansion is completed at a younger age; and once completed, surface area decreases at a higher rate. These findings suggest that intelligence may be more related to the magnitude and timing of changes in brain structure during development than to brain structure per se, and that the cortex is never completed but shows continuing intelligence-dependent development. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  16. Large-scale remapping of visual cortex is absent in adult humans with macular degeneration

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Baseler, Heidi A.; Gouws, Andre; Haak, Koen V.; Racey, Christopher; Crossland, Michael D.; Tufail, Adnan; Rubin, Gary S.; Cornelissen, Frans W.; Morland, Antony B.

    The occipital lobe contains retinotopic representations of the visual field. The representation of the central retina in early visual areas (V1-3) is found at the occipital pole. When the central retina is lesioned in both eyes by macular degeneration, this region of visual cortex at the occipital

  17. Oxygen consumption and blood flow coupling in human motor cortex during intense finger tapping

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Seyedi Vafaee, Manouchehr; Vang, Kim; Bergersen, Linda H

    2012-01-01

    Rates of cerebral blood flow (CBF) and glucose consumption (CMR(glc)) rise in cerebral cortex during continuous stimulation, while the oxygen-glucose index (OGI) declines as an index of mismatched coupling of oxygen consumption (cerebral metabolic rate of oxygen-CMRO(2)) to CBF and CMR(glc). To t...

  18. Long lasting effects of daily theta burst rTMS sessions in the human amblyopic cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clavagnier, Simon; Thompson, Benjamin; Hess, Robert F

    2013-11-01

    It has been reported that a single session of 1 Hz or 10 Hz repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) of the visual cortex can temporarily improve contrast sensitivity in adults with amblyopia. More recently, continuous theta burst stimulation (cTBS) of the visual cortex has been found to improve contrast sensitivity in observers with normal vision. The aims of this study were to assess whether cTBS of the visual cortex could improve contrast sensitivity in adults with amblyopia and whether repeated sessions of cTBS would lead to more pronounced and/or longer lasting effects. cTBS was delivered to the visual cortex while patients viewed a high contrast stimulus with their non-amblyopic eye. This manipulation was designed to bias the effects of cTBS toward inputs from the amblyopic eye. Contrast sensitivity was measured before and after stimulation. The effects of one cTBS session were measured in five patients and the effects of five consecutive daily sessions were measured in four patients. Three patients were available for follow-up at varying intervals after the final session. cTBS improved amblyopic eye contrast sensitivity to high spatial frequencies (P enduring visual function improvements in adults with amblyopia. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Automated immunohistochemical method to analyze large areas of the human cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abbass, Mohamad; Trought, Kathleen; Long, David; Semechko, Anton; Wong, Albert H C

    2018-01-15

    There have been inconsistencies in the histological abnormalities found in the cerebral cortex from patients with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and major depression. Discrepancies in previously published reports may arise from small sample sizes, inconsistent methodology and biased cell counting. We applied automated quantification of neuron density, neuron size and cortical layer thickness in large regions of the cerebral cortex in psychiatric patients. This method accurately segments DAPI positive cells that are also stained with CUX2 and FEZF2. Cortical layer thickness, neuron density and neuron size were automatically computed for each cortical layer in numerous Brodmann areas. We did not find pronounced cytoarchitectural abnormalities in the anterior cingulate cortex or orbitofrontal cortex in patients with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder or major depressive disorder. There were no significant differences in layer thickness measured in immunohistochemically stained slides compared with traditional Nissl stained slides. Automated cell counts were correlated, reliable and consistent with manual counts, while being much less time-consuming. We demonstrate the validity of using a novel automated analysis approach to post-mortem brain tissue. We were able to analyze large cortical areas and quantify specific cell populations using immunohistochemical markers. Future analyses could benefit from efficient automated analysis. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. Representation of auditory-filter phase characteristics in the cortex of human listeners

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rupp, A.; Sieroka, N.; Gutschalk, A.

    2008-01-01

    consistent with the perceptual data obtained with the same stimuli and with results from simulations of neural activity at the output of cochlear preprocessing. These findings demonstrate that phase effects in peripheral auditory processing are accurately reflected up to the level of the auditory cortex....

  1. Category Selectivity of Human Visual Cortex in Perception of Rubin Face–Vase Illusion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaogang Wang

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available When viewing the Rubin face–vase illusion, our conscious perception spontaneously alternates between the face and the vase; this illusion has been widely used to explore bistable perception. Previous functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI studies have studied the neural mechanisms underlying bistable perception through univariate and multivariate pattern analyses; however, no studies have investigated the issue of category selectivity. Here, we used fMRI to investigate the neural mechanisms underlying the Rubin face–vase illusion by introducing univariate amplitude and multivariate pattern analyses. The results from the amplitude analysis suggested that the activity in the fusiform face area was likely related to the subjective face perception. Furthermore, the pattern analysis results showed that the early visual cortex (EVC and the face-selective cortex could discriminate the activity patterns of the face and vase perceptions. However, further analysis of the activity patterns showed that only the face-selective cortex contains the face information. These findings indicated that although the EVC and face-selective cortex activities could discriminate the visual information, only the activity and activity pattern in the face-selective areas contained the category information of face perception in the Rubin face–vase illusion.

  2. Functional response of cerebral blood flow induced by somatosensory stimulation in rats with subarachnoid hemorrhage

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Zhiguo; Huang, Qin; Liu, Peng; Li, Pengcheng; Ma, Lianting; Lu, Jinling

    2015-09-01

    Subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) is often accompanied by cerebral vasospasm (CVS), which is the phenomenon of narrowing of large cerebral arteries, and then can produce delayed ischemic neurological deficit (DIND) such as lateralized sensory dysfunction. CVS was regarded as a major contributor to DIND in patients with SAH. However, therapy for preventing vasospasm after SAH to improve the outcomes may not work all the time. It is important to find answers to the relationship between CVS and DIND after SAH. How local cerebral blood flow (CBF) is regulated during functional activation after SAH still remains poorly understood, whereas, the regulation of CBF may play an important role in weakening the impact of CVS on cortex function. Therefore, it is worthwhile to evaluate the functional response of CBF in the activated cortex in an SAH animal model. Most evaluation of the effect of SAH is presently carried out by neurological behavioral scales. The functional imaging of cortical activation during sensory stimulation may help to reflect the function of the somatosensory cortex more locally than the behavioral scales do. We investigated the functional response of CBF in the somatosensory cortex induced by an electrical stimulation to contralateral forepaw via laser speckle imaging in a rat SAH model. Nineteen Sprague-Dawley rats from two groups (control group, n=10 and SAH group, n=9) were studied. SAH was induced in rats by double injection of autologous blood into the cisterna magna after CSF aspiration. The same surgical procedure was applied in the control group without CSF aspiration or blood injection. Significant CVS was found in the SAH group. Meanwhile, we observed a delayed peak of CBF response in rats with SAH compared with those in the control group, whereas no significant difference was found in magnitude, duration, and areas under curve of relative CBF changes between the two groups. The results suggest that the regulation function of local CBF during

  3. The interaction between felt touch and tactile consequences of observed actions: an action-based somatosensory congruency paradigm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deschrijver, Eliane; Wiersema, Jan R; Brass, Marcel

    2016-07-01

    Action observation leads to a representation of both the motor aspect of an observed action (motor simulation) and its somatosensory consequences (action-based somatosensory simulation) in the observer's brain. In the current electroencephalography-study, we investigated the neuronal interplay of action-based somatosensory simulation and felt touch. We presented index or middle finger tapping movements of a human or a wooden hand, while simultaneously presenting 'tap-like' tactile sensations to either the corresponding or non-corresponding fingertip of the participant. We focused on an early stage of somatosensory processing [P50, N100 and N140 sensory evoked potentials (SEPs)] and on a later stage of higher-order processing (P3-complex). The results revealed an interaction effect of animacy and congruency in the early P50 SEP and an animacy effect in the N100/N140 SEPs. In the P3-complex, we found an interaction effect indicating that the influence of congruency was larger in the human than in the wooden hand. We argue that the P3-complex may reflect higher-order self-other distinction by signaling simulated action-based touch that does not match own tactile information. As such, the action-based somatosensory congruency paradigm might help understand higher-order social processes from a somatosensory point of view. © The Author (2015). Published by Oxford University Press. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  4. The negative ultraslow potential, electrophysiological correlate of infarction in the human cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lückl, Janos; Lemale, Coline L; Kola, Vasilis; Horst, Viktor; Khojasteh, Uldus; Oliveira-Ferreira, Ana I; Major, Sebastian; Winkler, Maren K L; Kang, Eun-Jeung; Schoknecht, Karl; Martus, Peter; Hartings, Jed A; Woitzik, Johannes; Dreier, Jens P

    2018-06-01

    shift of spreading depolarizations in less compromised tissue. Using Generalized Estimating Equations applied to a logistic regression model, we found that negative ultraslow potential displaying electrodes were significantly more likely to overlie a developing ischaemic lesion (90.0%, 27/30) than those not displaying a negative ultraslow potential (0.0%, 0/20) (P = 0.004). Based on serial neuroimages, the lesions under the electrodes developed within a time window of 72 (56, 134) h. The negative ultraslow potential occurred in this time window in 9/10 patients. It was often preceded by a spreading depolarization cluster with increasingly persistent spreading depressions and progressively prolonged DC shifts and spreading ischaemias. During the negative ultraslow potential, spreading ischaemia lasted for 40.0 (28.0, 76.5) min, cerebral blood flow fell from 57 (53, 65) % to 26 (16, 42) % (n = 4) and tissue partial pressure of oxygen from 12.5 (9.2, 15.2) to 3.3 (2.4, 7.4) mmHg (n = 5). Our data suggest that the negative ultraslow potential is the electrophysiological correlate of infarction in human cerebral cortex and a neuromonitoring-detected medical emergency.awy102media15775596049001.

  5. Effects of diazepam and levodopa single doses on motor cortex plasticity modulation in healthy human subjects: A TMS study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ilić Nela V.

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Introduction. Administration of pharmacological agents with specific actions on neurotransmitter systems is a powerful driver of functional cortical reorganization. Plastic reorganization of the motor cortex in humans studies by the use of non-invasive stimulation protocols, which mimic the Hebbian model of associative plasticity. Objective. Aiming to explore pharmacological modulation on human motor cortex plasticity, we tested healthy subjects after each dosage of diazepam, levodopa i placebo administration, using paired associative stimulation protocol (PAS that induce fenomena similar to a long-term potentiation and depression, as defined on the synaptic level. Methods. We analyzed effects of benzodiazepines (10 mg, levodopa (200 mg and placebo on PAS protocol in 14 healthy volunteers, using a double-blind placebo-controlled study design. PAS consisted of electrical stimuli pairs at n.medianus and magnetic pulses over the scalp (transcranial magnetic stimulation in precisely defined intervals (ISI was 10 and 25 ms for a total of about 15 minutes (200 pairs. MEP amplitudes before and after (0, 10, 20 and 30 minutes later interventional protocols were compared. Results. When protocols were applied with placebo depending on ISI (10 ms - inhibitory, 25 ms - facilitatory effects, MEP amplitudes decreased or increased, while values in the postinterventional period (0, 10, 20 and 30 min were compared with initial values before the use of SAS. The use of benzodiazepines caused the occlusion of LTP-like effect, in contrast to amplification effects recorded after the administration of levodopa. With respect to the LTD-like protocol, the reverse was true (ANOVA for repeat measurements p<0.001. Conclusion. Administration of GABA-ergic agonist diazepam interferes with the induction of associative plasticity in the motor cortex of healthy individuals, as opposed to the use of levodopa, which stimulates these processes. The observed effects point at a

  6. A word expressing affective pain activates the anterior cingulate cortex in the human brain: an fMRI study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osaka, Naoyuki; Osaka, Mariko; Morishita, Masanao; Kondo, Hirohito; Fukuyama, Hidenao

    2004-08-12

    We present an fMRI study demonstrating that an onomatopoeia word highly suggestive of subjective pain, heard by the ear, significantly activates the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) while hearing non-sense words that did not imply affective pain under the same task does not activate this area in humans. We concluded that the ACC would be a pivotal locus for perceiving affective pain evoked by an onomatopoeia word that implied affective pain closely associated with the unpleasantness of pain. We suggest that the pain affect sustained by pain unpleasantness may depend on ACC-prefrontal cortical interactions that modify cognitive evaluation of emotions associated with word-induced pain.

  7. BOLD responses in somatosensory cortices better reflect heat sensation than pain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moulton, Eric A; Pendse, Gautam; Becerra, Lino R; Borsook, David

    2012-04-25

    The discovery of cortical networks that participate in pain processing has led to the common generalization that blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) responses in these areas indicate the processing of pain. Physical stimuli have fundamental properties that elicit sensations distinguishable from pain, such as heat. We hypothesized that pain intensity coding may reflect the intensity coding of heat sensation during the presentation of thermal stimuli during fMRI. Six 3T fMRI heat scans were collected for 16 healthy subjects, corresponding to perceptual levels of "low innocuous heat," "moderate innocuous heat," "high innocuous heat," "low painful heat," "moderate painful heat," and "high painful heat" delivered by a contact thermode to the face. Subjects rated pain and heat intensity separately after each scan. A general linear model analysis detected different patterns of brain activation for the different phases of the biphasic response to heat. During high painful heat, the early phase was associated with significant anterior insula and anterior cingulate cortex activation. Persistent responses were detected in the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and inferior parietal lobule. Only the late phase showed significant correlations with perceptual ratings. Significant heat intensity correlated activation was identified in contralateral primary and secondary somatosensory cortices, motor cortex, and superior temporal lobe. These areas were significantly more related to heat ratings than pain. These results indicate that heat intensity is encoded by the somatosensory cortices, and that pain evaluation may either arise from multimodal evaluative processes, or is a distributed process.

  8. Sensitivity to the visual field origin of natural image patches in human low-level visual cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Damien J. Mannion

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Asymmetries in the response to visual patterns in the upper and lower visual fields (above and below the centre of gaze have been associated with ecological factors relating to the structure of typical visual environments. Here, we investigated whether the content of the upper and lower visual field representations in low-level regions of human visual cortex are specialised for visual patterns that arise from the upper and lower visual fields in natural images. We presented image patches, drawn from above or below the centre of gaze of an observer navigating a natural environment, to either the upper or lower visual fields of human participants (n = 7 while we used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI to measure the magnitude of evoked activity in the visual areas V1, V2, and V3. We found a significant interaction between the presentation location (upper or lower visual field and the image patch source location (above or below fixation; the responses to lower visual field presentation were significantly greater for image patches sourced from below than above fixation, while the responses in the upper visual field were not significantly different for image patches sourced from above and below fixation. This finding demonstrates an association between the representation of the lower visual field in human visual cortex and the structure of the visual input that is likely to be encountered below the centre of gaze.

  9. [Retinotopic mapping of the human visual cortex with functional magnetic resonance imaging - basic principles, current developments and ophthalmological perspectives].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoffmann, M B; Kaule, F; Grzeschik, R; Behrens-Baumann, W; Wolynski, B

    2011-07-01

    Since its initial introduction in the mid-1990 s, retinotopic mapping of the human visual cortex, based on functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), has contributed greatly to our understanding of the human visual system. Multiple cortical visual field representations have been demonstrated and thus numerous visual areas identified. The organisation of specific areas has been detailed and the impact of pathophysiologies of the visual system on the cortical organisation uncovered. These results are based on investigations at a magnetic field strength of 3 Tesla or less. In a field-strength comparison between 3 and 7 Tesla, it was demonstrated that retinotopic mapping benefits from a magnetic field strength of 7 Tesla. Specifically, the visual areas can be mapped with high spatial resolution for a detailed analysis of the visual field maps. Applications of fMRI-based retinotopic mapping in ophthalmological research hold promise to further our understanding of plasticity in the human visual cortex. This is highlighted by pioneering studies in patients with macular dysfunction or misrouted optic nerves. © Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York.

  10. Neuropsychiatric effects of neurodegeneration of the medial vs. lateral ventral prefrontal cortex in humans

    OpenAIRE

    Huey, Edward D.; Lee, Seonjoo; Brickman, Adam M.; Manoochehri, Masood; Griffith, Erica; Devanand, D.P.; Stern, Yaakov; Grafman, Jordan

    2015-01-01

    Animal evidence suggests that a brain network involving the medial and rostral ventral prefrontal cortex (PFC) is central for threat response and arousal and a network involving the lateral and caudal PFC plays an important role in reward learning and behavioral control. In this study, we contrasted the neuropsychiatric effects of degeneration of the medial versus lateral PFC in 43 patients with Frontotemporal dementia and 11 patients with Corticobasal Syndrome using MRI, the Neuropsychiatric...

  11. Basic level category structure emerges gradually across human ventral visual cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iordan, Marius Cătălin; Greene, Michelle R; Beck, Diane M; Fei-Fei, Li

    2015-07-01

    Objects can be simultaneously categorized at multiple levels of specificity ranging from very broad ("natural object") to very distinct ("Mr. Woof"), with a mid-level of generality (basic level: "dog") often providing the most cognitively useful distinction between categories. It is unknown, however, how this hierarchical representation is achieved in the brain. Using multivoxel pattern analyses, we examined how well each taxonomic level (superordinate, basic, and subordinate) of real-world object categories is represented across occipitotemporal cortex. We found that, although in early visual cortex objects are best represented at the subordinate level (an effect mostly driven by low-level feature overlap between objects in the same category), this advantage diminishes compared to the basic level as we move up the visual hierarchy, disappearing in object-selective regions of occipitotemporal cortex. This pattern stems from a combined increase in within-category similarity (category cohesion) and between-category dissimilarity (category distinctiveness) of neural activity patterns at the basic level, relative to both subordinate and superordinate levels, suggesting that successive visual areas may be optimizing basic level representations.

  12. Sustained selective attention to competing amplitude-modulations in human auditory cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riecke, Lars; Scharke, Wolfgang; Valente, Giancarlo; Gutschalk, Alexander

    2014-01-01

    Auditory selective attention plays an essential role for identifying sounds of interest in a scene, but the neural underpinnings are still incompletely understood. Recent findings demonstrate that neural activity that is time-locked to a particular amplitude-modulation (AM) is enhanced in the auditory cortex when the modulated stream of sounds is selectively attended to under sensory competition with other streams. However, the target sounds used in the previous studies differed not only in their AM, but also in other sound features, such as carrier frequency or location. Thus, it remains uncertain whether the observed enhancements reflect AM-selective attention. The present study aims at dissociating the effect of AM frequency on response enhancement in auditory cortex by using an ongoing auditory stimulus that contains two competing targets differing exclusively in their AM frequency. Electroencephalography results showed a sustained response enhancement for auditory attention compared to visual attention, but not for AM-selective attention (attended AM frequency vs. ignored AM frequency). In contrast, the response to the ignored AM frequency was enhanced, although a brief trend toward response enhancement occurred during the initial 15 s. Together with the previous findings, these observations indicate that selective enhancement of attended AMs in auditory cortex is adaptive under sustained AM-selective attention. This finding has implications for our understanding of cortical mechanisms for feature-based attentional gain control.

  13. Sustained Selective Attention to Competing Amplitude-Modulations in Human Auditory Cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riecke, Lars; Scharke, Wolfgang; Valente, Giancarlo; Gutschalk, Alexander

    2014-01-01

    Auditory selective attention plays an essential role for identifying sounds of interest in a scene, but the neural underpinnings are still incompletely understood. Recent findings demonstrate that neural activity that is time-locked to a particular amplitude-modulation (AM) is enhanced in the auditory cortex when the modulated stream of sounds is selectively attended to under sensory competition with other streams. However, the target sounds used in the previous studies differed not only in their AM, but also in other sound features, such as carrier frequency or location. Thus, it remains uncertain whether the observed enhancements reflect AM-selective attention. The present study aims at dissociating the effect of AM frequency on response enhancement in auditory cortex by using an ongoing auditory stimulus that contains two competing targets differing exclusively in their AM frequency. Electroencephalography results showed a sustained response enhancement for auditory attention compared to visual attention, but not for AM-selective attention (attended AM frequency vs. ignored AM frequency). In contrast, the response to the ignored AM frequency was enhanced, although a brief trend toward response enhancement occurred during the initial 15 s. Together with the previous findings, these observations indicate that selective enhancement of attended AMs in auditory cortex is adaptive under sustained AM-selective attention. This finding has implications for our understanding of cortical mechanisms for feature-based attentional gain control. PMID:25259525

  14. Impaired verbal memory in Parkinson disease: relationship to prefrontal dysfunction and somatosensory discrimination

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Weniger Dorothea

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Objective To study the neurocognitive profile and its relationship to prefrontal dysfunction in non-demented Parkinson's disease (PD with deficient haptic perception. Methods Twelve right-handed patients with PD and 12 healthy control subjects underwent thorough neuropsychological testing including Rey complex figure, Rey auditory verbal and figural learning test, figural and verbal fluency, and Stroop test. Test scores reflecting significant differences between patients and healthy subjects were correlated with the individual expression coefficients of one principal component, obtained in a principal component analysis of an oxygen-15-labeled water PET study exploring somatosensory discrimination that differentiated between the two groups and involved prefrontal cortices. Results We found significantly decreased total scores for the verbal learning trials and verbal delayed free recall in PD patients compared with normal volunteers. Further analysis of these parameters using Spearman's ranking correlation showed a significantly negative correlation of deficient verbal recall with expression coefficients of the principal component whose image showed a subcortical-cortical network, including right dorsolateral-prefrontal cortex, in PD patients. Conclusion PD patients with disrupted right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex function and associated diminished somatosensory discrimination are impaired also in verbal memory functions. A negative correlation between delayed verbal free recall and PET activation in a network including the prefrontal cortices suggests that verbal cues and accordingly declarative memory processes may be operative in PD during activities that demand sustained attention such as somatosensory discrimination. Verbal cues may be compensatory in nature and help to non-specifically enhance focused attention in the presence of a functionally disrupted prefrontal cortex.

  15. Temporal factors affecting somatosensory-auditory interactions in speech processing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takayuki eIto

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Speech perception is known to rely on both auditory and visual information. However, sound specific somatosensory input has been shown also to influence speech perceptual processing (Ito et al., 2009. In the present study we addressed further the relationship between somatosensory information and speech perceptual processing by addressing the hypothesis that the temporal relationship between orofacial movement and sound processing contributes to somatosensory-auditory interaction in speech perception. We examined the changes in event-related potentials in response to multisensory synchronous (simultaneous and asynchronous (90 ms lag and lead somatosensory and auditory stimulation compared to individual unisensory auditory and somatosensory stimulation alone. We used a robotic device to apply facial skin somatosensory deformations that were similar in timing and duration to those experienced in speech production. Following synchronous multisensory stimulation the amplitude of the event-related potential was reliably different from the two unisensory potentials. More importantly, the magnitude of the event-related potential difference varied as a function of the relative timing of the somatosensory-auditory stimulation. Event-related activity change due to stimulus timing was seen between 160-220 ms following somatosensory onset, mostly around the parietal area. The results demonstrate a dynamic modulation of somatosensory-auditory convergence and suggest the contribution of somatosensory information for speech processing process is dependent on the specific temporal order of sensory inputs in speech production.

  16. Assessing Somatosensory Utilization during Unipedal Postural Control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goel, Rahul; De Dios, Yiri E; Gadd, Nichole E; Caldwell, Erin E; Peters, Brian T; Reschke, Millard F; Bloomberg, Jacob J; Oddsson, Lars I E; Mulavara, Ajitkumar P

    2017-01-01

    Multisensory-visual, vestibular and somatosensory information is integrated for appropriate postural control. The primary goal of this study was to assess somatosensory utilization during a functional motor task of unipedal postural control, in normal healthy adults. Assessing individual bias in the utilization of individual sensory contributions during postural control may help customization of rehabilitation protocols. In this study, a test paradigm of unipedal stance control in supine orientation with and without vision was assessed. Postural control in this test paradigm was hypothesized to utilize predominantly contributions of somatosensory information from the feet and ankle joint, with minimal vestibular input. Fourteen healthy subjects "stood" supine on their dominant leg while strapped to a backpack frame that was freely moving on air-bearings, to remove available otolith tilt cues with respect to gravity that influences postural control when standing upright. The backpack was attached through a cable to a pneumatic cylinder that provided a gravity-like load. Subjects performed three trials each with Eyes-open (EO) and Eyes-closed (EC) while loaded with 60% body weight. There was no difference in unipedal stance time (UST) across the two conditions with EC condition challenging the postural control system greater than the EO condition. Stabilogram-diffusion analysis (SDA) indicated that the critical mean square displacement was significantly different between the two conditions. Vestibular cues, both in terms of magnitude and the duration for which relevant information was available for postural control in this test paradigm, were minimized. These results support our hypothesis that maintaining unipedal stance in supine orientation without vision, minimizes vestibular contribution and thus predominantly utilizes somatosensory information for postural control.

  17. [Maturation of cerebral somatosensory evoked potentials].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cadilhac, J; Zhu, Y; Georgesco, M; Echenne, B; Rodiere, M

    1985-07-01

    Cerebral somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) were elicited by stimulation of the median nerve and/or posterior tibial nerve in 117 children of 1 day to 16 years old. A major negative wave (N) was consistently recorded from the parietal region of the scalp when the arm was stimulated. The peak latency, the onset latency, the rising time and the duration of H wave are closely correlated with age and body length. The latencies are shortest in the subjects of 1-3 years old. SEPs to lower extremity stimulation were inconstant in the infants before the age of one. The major positive wave (P) has a variable topographic distribution along the middle line, over the scalp. The latencies are also very variable in the different subjects of the same age as well as in the same subject with different locations of active electrode. Among the parameters studied as for N wave, only the rising time of P wave is significantly correlated with age. The latencies of P wave have the shortest value in the subjects of 1-3 years old. The comparison of SEPs to upper and to lower limb stimulations shows that there is no relationship between them in respect to their morphology and amplitude. The minimum value of the latencies of N and P waves was observed at the same age but the difference between the peak latencies of P and N waves in the same subject increases considerably after 2 years of age and reaches the adult value after 5 years of age. These resultats indicate that the maturation of the peripheral somatosensory pathways proceeds at a higher rate than that of the central somatosensory pathways, that the maturation of the somatosensory pathways of the upper limb precedes that of the lower limb, and that the rising time of N or P waves is a good index of cortical maturation. The clinical utility of these SEPs in pediatrics is discussed.

  18. The impact of top-down spatial attention on laterality and hemispheric asymmetry in the human parietal cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeong, Su Keun; Xu, Yaoda

    2016-08-01

    The human parietal cortex exhibits a preference to contralaterally presented visual stimuli (i.e., laterality) as well as an asymmetry between the two hemispheres with the left parietal cortex showing greater laterality than the right. Using visual short-term memory and perceptual tasks and varying target location predictability, this study examined whether hemispheric laterality and asymmetry are fixed characteristics of the human parietal cortex or whether they are dynamic and modulated by the deployment of top-down attention to the target present hemifield. Two parietal regions were examined here that have previously been shown to be involved in visual object individuation and identification and are located in the inferior and superior intraparietal sulcus (IPS), respectively. Across three experiments, significant laterality was found in both parietal regions regardless of attentional modulation with laterality being greater in the inferior than superior IPS, consistent with their roles in object individuation and identification, respectively. Although the deployment of top-down attention had no effect on the superior IPS, it significantly increased laterality in the inferior IPS. The deployment of top-down spatial attention can thus amplify the strength of laterality in the inferior IPS. Hemispheric asymmetry, on the other hand, was absent in both brain regions and only emerged in the inferior but not the superior IPS with the deployment of top-down attention. Interestingly, the strength of hemispheric asymmetry significantly correlated with the strength of laterality in the inferior IPS. Hemispheric asymmetry thus seems to only emerge when there is a sufficient amount of laterality present in a brain region.

  19. Neuronal density, size and shape in the human anterior cingulate cortex: a comparison of Nissl and NeuN staining.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gittins, Rebecca; Harrison, Paul J

    2004-03-15

    There are an increasing number of quantitative morphometric studies of the human cerebral cortex, especially as part of comparative investigations of major psychiatric disorders. In this context, the present study had two aims. First, to provide quantitative data regarding key neuronal morphometric parameters in the anterior cingulate cortex. Second, to compare the results of conventional Nissl staining with those observed after immunostaining with NeuN, an antibody becoming widely used as a selective neuronal marker. We stained adjacent sections of area 24b from 16 adult brains with cresyl violet or NeuN. We measured the density of pyramidal and non-pyramidal neurons, and the size and shape of pyramidal neurons, in laminae II, III, Va, Vb and VI, using two-dimensional counting methods. Strong correlations between the two modes of staining were seen for all variables. However, NeuN gave slightly higher estimates of neuronal density and size, and a more circular perikaryal shape. Brain pH was correlated with neuronal size, measured with both methods, and with neuronal shape. Age and post-mortem interval showed no correlations with any parameter. These data confirm the value of NeuN as a tool for quantitative neuronal morphometric studies in routinely processed human brain tissue. Absolute values are highly correlated between NeuN and cresyl violet stains, but cannot be interchanged. NeuN may be particularly useful when it is important to distinguish small neurons from glia, such as in cytoarchitectural studies of the cerebral cortex in depression and schizophrenia.

  20. Somatosensory tinnitus: Current evidence and future perspectives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greco, Antonio; Turchetta, Rosaria; Altissimi, Giancarlo; de Vincentiis, Marco; Cianfrone, Giancarlo

    2017-01-01

    In some individuals, tinnitus can be modulated by specific maneuvers of the temporomandibular joint, head and neck, eyes, and limbs. Neuroplasticity seems to play a central role in this capacity for modulation, suggesting that abnormal interactions between the sensory modalities, sensorimotor systems, and neurocognitive and neuroemotional networks may contribute to the development of somatosensory tinnitus. Current evidence supports a link between somatic disorders and higher modulation of tinnitus, especially in patients with a normal hearing threshold. Patients with tinnitus who have somatic disorders seems to have a higher chance of modulating their tinnitus with somatic maneuvers; consistent improvements in tinnitus symptoms have been observed in patients with temporomandibular joint disease following targeted therapy for temporomandibular disorders. Somatosensory tinnitus is often overlooked by otolaryngologists and not fully investigated during the diagnostic process. Somatic disorders, when identified and treated, can be a valid therapeutic target for tinnitus; however, somatic screening of subjects for somatosensory tinnitus is imperative for correct selection of patients who would benefit from a multidisciplinary somatic approach. PMID:28553764

  1. Somatosensory tinnitus: Current evidence and future perspectives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ralli, Massimo; Greco, Antonio; Turchetta, Rosaria; Altissimi, Giancarlo; de Vincentiis, Marco; Cianfrone, Giancarlo

    2017-06-01

    In some individuals, tinnitus can be modulated by specific maneuvers of the temporomandibular joint, head and neck, eyes, and limbs. Neuroplasticity seems to play a central role in this capacity for modulation, suggesting that abnormal interactions between the sensory modalities, sensorimotor systems, and neurocognitive and neuroemotional networks may contribute to the development of somatosensory tinnitus. Current evidence supports a link between somatic disorders and higher modulation of tinnitus, especially in patients with a normal hearing threshold. Patients with tinnitus who have somatic disorders seems to have a higher chance of modulating their tinnitus with somatic maneuvers; consistent improvements in tinnitus symptoms have been observed in patients with temporomandibular joint disease following targeted therapy for temporomandibular disorders. Somatosensory tinnitus is often overlooked by otolaryngologists and not fully investigated during the diagnostic process. Somatic disorders, when identified and treated, can be a valid therapeutic target for tinnitus; however, somatic screening of subjects for somatosensory tinnitus is imperative for correct selection of patients who would benefit from a multidisciplinary somatic approach.

  2. TMS-induced neural noise in sensory cortex interferes with short-term memory storage in prefrontal cortex

    OpenAIRE

    Bancroft, Tyler D.; Hogeveen, Jeremy; Hockley, William E.; Servos, Philip

    2014-01-01

    In a previous study, Harris et al. (2002) found disruption of vibrotactile short-term memory after applying single-pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to primary somatosensory cortex (SI) early in the maintenance period, and suggested that this demonstrated a role for SI in vibrotactile memory storage. While such a role is compatible with recent suggestions that sensory cortex is the storage substrate for working memory, it stands in contrast to a relatively large body of evidence f...

  3. Glutamate concentration in the medial prefrontal cortex predicts resting-state cortical-subcortical functional connectivity in humans.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Niall W Duncan

    Full Text Available Communication between cortical and subcortical regions is integral to a wide range of psychological processes and has been implicated in a number of psychiatric conditions. Studies in animals have provided insight into the biochemical and connectivity processes underlying such communication. However, to date no experiments that link these factors in humans in vivo have been carried out. To investigate the role of glutamate in individual differences in communication between the cortex--specifically the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC--and subcortical regions in humans, a combination of resting-state fMRI, DTI and MRS was performed. The subcortical target regions were the nucleus accumbens (NAc, dorsomedial thalamus (DMT, and periaqueductal grey (PAG. It was found that functional connectivity between the mPFC and each of the NAc and DMT was positively correlated with mPFC glutamate concentrations, whilst functional connectivity between the mPFC and PAG was negatively correlated with glutamate concentration. The correlations involving mPFC glutamate and FC between the mPFC and each of the DMT and PAG were mirrored by correlations with structural connectivity, providing evidence that the glutamatergic relationship may, in part, be due to direct connectivity. These results are in agreement with existing results from animal studies and may have relevance for MDD and schizophrenia.

  4. Feature diagnosticity and task context shape activity in human scene-selective cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lowe, Matthew X; Gallivan, Jason P; Ferber, Susanne; Cant, Jonathan S

    2016-01-15

    Scenes are constructed from multiple visual features, yet previous research investigating scene processing has often focused on the contributions of single features in isolation. In the real world, features rarely exist independently of one another and likely converge to inform scene identity in unique ways. Here, we utilize fMRI and pattern classification techniques to examine the interactions between task context (i.e., attend to diagnostic global scene features; texture or layout) and high-level scene attributes (content and spatial boundary) to test the novel hypothesis that scene-selective cortex represents multiple visual features, the importance of which varies according to their diagnostic relevance across scene categories and task demands. Our results show for the first time that scene representations are driven by interactions between multiple visual features and high-level scene attributes. Specifically, univariate analysis of scene-selective cortex revealed that task context and feature diagnosticity shape activity differentially across scene categories. Examination using multivariate decoding methods revealed results consistent with univariate findings, but also evidence for an interaction between high-level scene attributes and diagnostic visual features within scene categories. Critically, these findings suggest visual feature representations are not distributed uniformly across scene categories but are shaped by task context and feature diagnosticity. Thus, we propose that scene-selective cortex constructs a flexible representation of the environment by integrating multiple diagnostically relevant visual features, the nature of which varies according to the particular scene being perceived and the goals of the observer. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Neural sources of visual working memory maintenance in human parietal and ventral extrastriate visual cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Becke, Andreas; Müller, Notger; Vellage, Anne; Schoenfeld, Mircea Ariel; Hopf, Jens-Max

    2015-04-15

    Maintaining information in visual working memory is reliably indexed by the contralateral delay activity (CDA) - a sustained modulation of the event-related potential (ERP) with a topographical maximum over posterior scalp regions contralateral to the memorized input. Based on scalp topography, it is hypothesized that the CDA reflects neural activity in the parietal cortex, but the precise cortical origin of underlying electric activity was never determined. Here we combine ERP recordings with magnetoencephalography based source localization to characterize the cortical current sources generating the CDA. Observers performed a cued delayed match to sample task where either the color or the relative position of colored dots had to be maintained in memory. A detailed source-localization analysis of the magnetic activity in the retention interval revealed that the magnetic analog of the CDA (mCDA) is generated by current sources in the parietal cortex. Importantly, we find that the mCDA also receives contribution from current sources in the ventral extrastriate cortex that display a time-course similar to the parietal sources. On the basis of the magnetic responses, forward modeling of ERP data reveals that the ventral sources have non-optimal projections and that these sources are therefore concealed in the ERP by overlapping fields with parietal projections. The present observations indicate that visual working memory maintenance, as indexed by the CDA, involves the parietal cortical regions as well as the ventral extrastriate regions, which code the sensory representation of the memorized content. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Distributed neural signatures of natural audiovisual speech and music in the human auditory cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salmi, Juha; Koistinen, Olli-Pekka; Glerean, Enrico; Jylänki, Pasi; Vehtari, Aki; Jääskeläinen, Iiro P; Mäkelä, Sasu; Nummenmaa, Lauri; Nummi-Kuisma, Katarina; Nummi, Ilari; Sams, Mikko

    2017-08-15

    During a conversation or when listening to music, auditory and visual information are combined automatically into audiovisual objects. However, it is still poorly understood how specific type of visual information shapes neural processing of sounds in lifelike stimulus environments. Here we applied multi-voxel pattern analysis to investigate how naturally matching visual input modulates supratemporal cortex activity during processing of naturalistic acoustic speech, singing and instrumental music. Bayesian logistic regression classifiers with sparsity-promoting priors were trained to predict whether the stimulus was audiovisual or auditory, and whether it contained piano playing, speech, or singing. The predictive performances of the classifiers were tested by leaving one participant at a time for testing and training the model using the remaining 15 participants. The signature patterns associated with unimodal auditory stimuli encompassed distributed locations mostly in the middle and superior temporal gyrus (STG/MTG). A pattern regression analysis, based on a continuous acoustic model, revealed that activity in some of these MTG and STG areas were associated with acoustic features present in speech and music stimuli. Concurrent visual stimulus modulated activity in bilateral MTG (speech), lateral aspect of right anterior STG (singing), and bilateral parietal opercular cortex (piano). Our results suggest that specific supratemporal brain areas are involved in processing complex natural speech, singing, and piano playing, and other brain areas located in anterior (facial speech) and posterior (music-related hand actions) supratemporal cortex are influenced by related visual information. Those anterior and posterior supratemporal areas have been linked to stimulus identification and sensory-motor integration, respectively. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Keeping in Touch With the Visual System: Spatial Alignment and Multisensory Integration of Visual-Somatosensory Inputs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeannette Rose Mahoney

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Correlated sensory inputs coursing along the individual sensory processing hierarchies arrive at multisensory convergence zones in cortex where inputs are processed in an integrative manner. The exact hierarchical level of multisensory convergence zones and the timing of their inputs are still under debate, although increasingly, evidence points to multisensory integration at very early sensory processing levels. The objective of the current study was to determine, both psychophysically and electrophysiologically, whether differential visual-somatosensory integration patterns exist for stimuli presented to the same versus opposite hemifields. Using high-density electrical mapping and complementary psychophysical data, we examined multisensory integrative processing for combinations of visual and somatosensory inputs presented to both left and right spatial locations. We assessed how early during sensory processing visual-somatosensory (VS interactions were seen in the event-related potential and whether spatial alignment of the visual and somatosensory elements resulted in differential integration effects. Reaction times to all VS pairings were significantly faster than those to the unisensory conditions, regardless of spatial alignment, pointing to engagement of integrative multisensory processing in all conditions. In support, electrophysiological results revealed significant differences between multisensory simultaneous VS and summed V+S responses, regardless of the spatial alignment of the constituent inputs. Nonetheless, multisensory effects were earlier in the aligned conditions, and were found to be particularly robust in the case of right-sided inputs (beginning at just 55ms. In contrast to previous work on audio-visual and audio-somatosensory inputs, the current work suggests a degree of spatial specificity to the earliest detectable multisensory integrative effects in response to visual-somatosensory pairings.

  8. A Cognição Social e o Córtex Cerebral Social Cognition and the Brain Cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Judith Butman

    2001-01-01

    Full Text Available A cognição social é o processo que orienta condutas frente a outros indivíduos da mesma espécie. Várias estruturas cerebrais têm um papel chave para controlar as condutas sociais: o córtex pré-frontal ventromedial, a amígdala, o córtex somatosensorial direito e a ínsula. O córtex pré-frontal ventromedial está comprometido com o raciocínio social e com a tomada de decisões; a amígdala com o julgamento social de faces; o córtex somatosensorial direito, com a empatia e com a simulação; enquanto que a insula, com a resposta autonômica. Estes achados estão de acordo com a hipótese do marcador somático, um mecanismo específico por meio do qual adquirimos, representamos ou memorizamos os valores de nossas ações. Estas estruturas cerebrais atuam como mediadores entre as representações perceptuais dos estímulos sensoriais e a recuperação do conhecimento que o estímulo pode ativar. O sistema límbico é a zona limítrofe; nela, a psicologia se encontra com a neurologia. A correta sincronização destas zonas e estruturas, no adulto, é a chave para uma situação livre de patologia.Social cognition refers to the processes that subserve behavior in response to other individuals of the same species. Several brain structures play a key role in guiding social behaviors: ventromedial prefrontal cortex, amygdala, right somatosensory cortex and insula. The ventromedial prefrontal cortex is most directly involved in social reasoning and decision making; the amygdala in social judgment of faces, the right somatosensory cortex in empathy and simulation and the insula in autonomic responses. These findings are corresponding to the somatic marker hypothesis, particular mechanism by which we acquire, represent and retrieve the values of our actions. These brain structures appear to mediate between perceptual representation of social stimuli and retrieval of knowledge that such stimuli can trigger. The limbic system is the border zone

  9. Top-down modulation in human visual cortex predicts the stability of a perceptual illusion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meindertsma, Thomas; Hillebrand, Arjan; van Dijk, Bob W.; Lamme, Victor A. F.; Donner, Tobias H.

    2014-01-01

    Conscious perception sometimes fluctuates strongly, even when the sensory input is constant. For example, in motion-induced blindness (MIB), a salient visual target surrounded by a moving pattern suddenly disappears from perception, only to reappear after some variable time. Whereas such changes of perception result from fluctuations of neural activity, mounting evidence suggests that the perceptual changes, in turn, may also cause modulations of activity in several brain areas, including visual cortex. In this study, we asked whether these latter modulations might affect the subsequent dynamics of perception. We used magnetoencephalography (MEG) to measure modulations in cortical population activity during MIB. We observed a transient, retinotopically widespread modulation of beta (12–30 Hz)-frequency power over visual cortex that was closely linked to the time of subjects' behavioral report of the target disappearance. This beta modulation was a top-down signal, decoupled from both the physical stimulus properties and the motor response but contingent on the behavioral relevance of the perceptual change. Critically, the modulation amplitude predicted the duration of the subsequent target disappearance. We propose that the transformation of the perceptual change into a report triggers a top-down mechanism that stabilizes the newly selected perceptual interpretation. PMID:25411458

  10. Sensitivity of human auditory cortex to rapid frequency modulation revealed by multivariate representational similarity analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joanisse, Marc F; DeSouza, Diedre D

    2014-01-01

    Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) was used to investigate the extent, magnitude, and pattern of brain activity in response to rapid frequency-modulated sounds. We examined this by manipulating the direction (rise vs. fall) and the rate (fast vs. slow) of the apparent pitch of iterated rippled noise (IRN) bursts. Acoustic parameters were selected to capture features used in phoneme contrasts, however the stimuli themselves were not perceived as speech per se. Participants were scanned as they passively listened to sounds in an event-related paradigm. Univariate analyses revealed a greater level and extent of activation in bilateral auditory cortex in response to frequency-modulated sweeps compared to steady-state sounds. This effect was stronger in the left hemisphere. However, no regions showed selectivity for either rate or direction of frequency modulation. In contrast, multivoxel pattern analysis (MVPA) revealed feature-specific encoding for direction of modulation in auditory cortex bilaterally. Moreover, this effect was strongest when analyses were restricted to anatomical regions lying outside Heschl's gyrus. We found no support for feature-specific encoding of frequency modulation rate. Differential findings of modulation rate and direction of modulation are discussed with respect to their relevance to phonetic discrimination.

  11. Mirth and laughter elicited by electrical stimulation of the human anterior cingulate cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caruana, Fausto; Avanzini, Pietro; Gozzo, Francesca; Francione, Stefano; Cardinale, Francesco; Rizzolatti, Giacomo

    2015-10-01

    Laughter is a complex motor behavior that, typically, expresses mirth. Despite its fundamental role in social life, knowledge about the neural basis of laughter is very limited and mostly based on a few electrical stimulation (ES) studies carried out in epileptic patients. In these studies laughter was elicited from temporal areas where it was accompanied by mirth and from frontal areas plus an anterior cingulate case where laughter without mirth was observed. On the basis of these findings, it has been proposed a dichotomy between temporal lobe areas processing the emotional content of laughter and anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) and motor areas responsible of laughter production. The present study is aimed to understand the role of ACC in laughter. We report the effects of stimulation of 10 rostral, pregenual ACC (pACC) patients in which the ES elicited laughter. In half of the patients ES elicited a clear burst of laughter with mirth, while in the other half mirth was not evident. This large dataset allow us to offer a more reliable picture of the functional contribute of this region in laughter, and to precisely localize it in the cingulate cortex. We conclude that the pACC is involved in both the motor and the affective components of emotions, and challenge the validity of a sharp dichotomy between motor and emotional centers for laughing. Finally, we suggest a possible anatomical network for the production of positive emotional expressions. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Neuroplasticity Changes on Human Motor Cortex Induced by Acupuncture Therapy: A Preliminary Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yi Yang

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available While neuroplasticity changes measured by transcranial magnetic stimulation have been proved to be highly correlated to motor recovery and have been tested in various forms of interventions, it has not been applied to investigate the neurophysiologic mechanism of acupuncture therapy. The aim of this study is to investigate neuroplasticity changes induced by a single session of acupuncture therapy in healthy adults, regarding the excitability change on bilateral primary motor cortex and interhemispheric inhibition. Ten subjects took a 30-minute acupuncture therapy and the same length relaxing phase in separate days. Transcranial magnetic stimulation measures, including resting motor threshold, amplitudes of motor-evoked potential, and interhemispheric inhibition, were assessed before and 10 minutes after intervention. Acupuncture treatment showed significant changes on potential amplitude from both ipsilateral and contralateral hemispheres to acupuncture compared to baseline. Also, interhemispheric inhibition from the contralateral motor cortex to the opposite showed a significant decline. The results indicated that corticomotoneuronal excitability and interhemispheric competition could be modulated by acupuncture therapy on healthy subjects. The following question about whether these changes will be observed in the same way on stroke patients and whether they correlate with the therapeutic effect on movement need to be answered by following studies. This trial is registered with ISRCTN13074245.

  13. How does transcranial DC stimulation of the primary motor cortex alter regional neuronal activity in the human brain?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lang, Nicolas; Siebner, Hartwig R; Ward, Nick S; Lee, Lucy; Nitsche, Michael A; Paulus, Walter; Rothwell, John C; Lemon, Roger N; Frackowiak, Richard S

    2005-07-01

    Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) of the primary motor hand area (M1) can produce lasting polarity-specific effects on corticospinal excitability and motor learning in humans. In 16 healthy volunteers, O positron emission tomography (PET) of regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) at rest and during finger movements was used to map lasting changes in regional synaptic activity following 10 min of tDCS (+/-1 mA). Bipolar tDCS was given through electrodes placed over the left M1 and right frontopolar cortex. Eight subjects received anodal or cathodal tDCS of the left M1, respectively. When compared to sham tDCS, anodal and cathodal tDCS induced widespread increases and decreases in rCBF in cortical and subcortical areas. These changes in rCBF were of the same magnitude as task-related rCBF changes during finger movements and remained stable throughout the 50-min period of PET scanning. Relative increases in rCBF after real tDCS compared to sham tDCS were found in the left M1, right frontal pole, right primary sensorimotor cortex and posterior brain regions irrespective of polarity. With the exception of some posterior and ventral areas, anodal tDCS increased rCBF in many cortical and subcortical regions compared to cathodal tDCS. Only the left dorsal premotor cortex demonstrated an increase in movement related activity after cathodal tDCS, however, modest compared with the relatively strong movement-independent effects of tDCS. Otherwise, movement related activity was unaffected by tDCS. Our results indicate that tDCS is an effective means of provoking sustained and widespread changes in regional neuronal activity. The extensive spatial and temporal effects of tDCS need to be taken into account when tDCS is used to modify brain function.

  14. Inhibition of somatosensory-evoked cortical responses by a weak leading stimulus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakagawa, Kei; Inui, Koji; Yuge, Louis; Kakigi, Ryusuke

    2014-11-01

    We previously demonstrated that auditory-evoked cortical responses were suppressed by a weak leading stimulus in a manner similar to the prepulse inhibition (PPI) of startle reflexes. The purpose of the present study was to investigate whether a similar phenomenon was present in the somatosensory system, and also whether this suppression reflected an inhibitory process. We recorded somatosensory-evoked magnetic fields following stimulation of the median nerve and evaluated the extent by which they were suppressed by inserting leading stimuli at an intensity of 2.5-, 1.5-, 1.1-, or 0.9-fold the sensory threshold (ST) in healthy participants (Experiment 1). The results obtained demonstrated that activity in the secondary somatosensory cortex in the hemisphere contralateral to the stimulated side (cSII) was significantly suppressed by a weak leading stimulus with the intensity larger than 1.1-fold ST. This result implied that the somatosensory system had an inhibitory process similar to that of PPI. We then presented two successive leading stimuli before the test stimulus, and compared the extent of suppression between the test stimulus-evoked responses and those obtained with the second prepulse alone and with two prepulses (first and second) (Experiment 2). When two prepulses were preceded, cSII responses to the second prepulse were suppressed by the first prepulse, whereas the ability of the second prepulse to suppress the test stimulus remained unchanged. These results suggested the presence of at least two individual pathways; response-generating and inhibitory pathways. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. The physiological basis of the effects of intermittent theta burst stimulation of the human motor cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Lazzaro, V; Pilato, F; Dileone, M; Profice, P; Oliviero, A; Mazzone, P; Insola, A; Ranieri, F; Meglio, M; Tonali, P A; Rothwell, J C

    2008-08-15

    Theta burst stimulation (TBS) is a form of repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). When applied to motor cortex it leads to after-effects on corticospinal and corticocortical excitability that may reflect LTP/LTD-like synaptic effects. An inhibitory form of TBS (continuous, cTBS) suppresses MEPs, and spinal epidural recordings show this is due to suppression of the I1 volley evoked by TMS. Here we investigate whether the excitatory form of TBS (intermittent, iTBS) affects the same I-wave circuitry. We recorded corticospinal volleys evoked by single pulse TMS of the motor cortex before and after iTBS in three conscious patients who had an electrode implanted in the cervical epidural space for the control of pain. As in healthy subjects, iTBS increased MEPs, and this was accompanied by a significant increase in the amplitude of later I-waves, but not the I1 wave. In two of the patients we tested the excitability of the contralateral cortex and found a significant suppression of the late I-waves. The extent of the changes varied between the three patients, as did their age. To investigate whether age might be a significant contributor to the variability we examined the effect of iTBS on MEPs in 18 healthy subjects. iTBS facilitated MEPs evoked by TMS of the conditioned hemisphere and suppressed MEPs evoked by stimulation of the contralateral hemisphere. There was a slight but non-significant decline in MEP facilitation with age, suggesting that interindividual variability was more important than age in explaining our data. In a subgroup of 10 subjects we found that iTBS had no effect on the duration of the ipsilateral silent period suggesting that the reduction in contralateral MEPs was not due to an increase in ongoing transcallosal inhibition. In conclusion, iTBS affects the excitability of excitatory synaptic inputs to pyramidal tract neurones that are recruited by a TMS pulse, both in the stimulated hemisphere and in the contralateral hemisphere

  16. The biology of skin wetness perception and its implications in manual function and for reproducing complex somatosensory signals in neuroprosthetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ackerley, Rochelle

    2017-01-01

    Our perception of skin wetness is generated readily, yet humans have no known receptor (hygroreceptor) to signal this directly. It is easy to imagine the sensation of water running over our hands or the feel of rain on our skin. The synthetic sensation of wetness is thought to be produced from a combination of specific skin thermal and tactile inputs, registered through thermoreceptors and mechanoreceptors, respectively. The present review explores how thermal and tactile afference from the periphery can generate the percept of wetness centrally. We propose that the main signals include information about skin cooling, signaled primarily by thinly myelinated thermoreceptors, and rapid changes in touch, through fast-conducting, myelinated mechanoreceptors. Potential central sites for integration of these signals, and thus the perception of skin wetness, include the primary and secondary somatosensory cortices and the insula cortex. The interactions underlying these processes can also be modeled to aid in understanding and engineering the mechanisms. Furthermore, we discuss the role that sensing wetness could play in precision grip and the dexterous manipulation of objects. We expand on these lines of inquiry to the application of the knowledge in designing and creating skin sensory feedback in prosthetics. The addition of real-time, complex sensory signals would mark a significant advance in the use and incorporation of prosthetic body parts for amputees in everyday life. PMID:28123008

  17. Can you hear me yet? An intracranial investigation of speech and non-speech audiovisual interactions in human cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rhone, Ariane E; Nourski, Kirill V; Oya, Hiroyuki; Kawasaki, Hiroto; Howard, Matthew A; McMurray, Bob

    In everyday conversation, viewing a talker's face can provide information about the timing and content of an upcoming speech signal, resulting in improved intelligibility. Using electrocorticography, we tested whether human auditory cortex in Heschl's gyrus (HG) and on superior temporal gyrus (STG) and motor cortex on precentral gyrus (PreC) were responsive to visual/gestural information prior to the onset of sound and whether early stages of auditory processing were sensitive to the visual content (speech syllable versus non-speech motion). Event-related band power (ERBP) in the high gamma band was content-specific prior to acoustic onset on STG and PreC, and ERBP in the beta band differed in all three areas. Following sound onset, we found with no evidence for content-specificity in HG, evidence for visual specificity in PreC, and specificity for both modalities in STG. These results support models of audio-visual processing in which sensory information is integrated in non-primary cortical areas.

  18. Distribution of precursor amyloid-β-protein messenger RNA in human cerebral cortex: relationship to neurofibrillary tangles and neuritic plaques

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lewis, D.A.; Higgins, G.A.; Young, W.G.; Goldgaber, D.; Gajdusek, D.C.; Wilson, M.C.; Morrison, J.H.

    1988-01-01

    Neurofibrillary tangles (NFT) and neuritic plaques (NP), two neuropathological markers of Alzheimer disease, may both contain peptide fragments derived from the human amyloid β protein. However, the nature of the relationship between NFT and NP and the source of the amyloid β proteins found in each have remained unclear. The authors used in situ hybridization techniques to map the anatomical distribution of precursor amyloid-β-protein mRNA in the neocortex of brains from three subjects with no known neurologic disease and from five patients with Alzheimer disease. In brains from control subjects, positively hybridizing neurons were present in cortical regions and layers that contain a high density of neuropathological markers in Alzheimer disease, as well as in those loci that contain NP but few NFT. Quantitative analyses of in situ hybridization patterns within layers III and V of the superior frontal cortex revealed that the presence of high numbers of NFT in Alzheimer-diseased brains was associated with a decrease in the number of positively hybridizing neurons compared to controls and Alzheimer-diseased brains with few NFT. These findings suggest that the expression of precursor amyloid-β-protein mRNA may be a necessary but is clearly not a sufficient prerequisite for NFT formation. In addition, these results may indicate that the amyloid β protein, present in NP in a given region or layer of cortex, is not derived from the resident neuronal cell bodies that express the mRNA for the precursor protein

  19. Functional MRI activation of somatosensory and motor cortices in a hand-grafted patient with early clinical sensorimotor recovery

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Neugroschl, C.; Denolin, V.; Schuind, F.; Holder, C. van; David, P.; Baleriaux, D.; Metens, T.

    2005-01-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate somatosensory and motor cortical activity with functional MRI (fMRI) in a hand-grafted patient with early clinical recovery. The patient had motor fMRI examinations before transplantation, and motor and passive tactile stimulations after surgery. His normal hand and a normal group were studied for comparison. A patient with complete brachial plexus palsy was studied to assess the lack of a fMRI signal in somatosensory areas in the case of total axonal disconnection. Stimulating the grafted hand revealed significant activation in the contralateral somatosensory cortical areas in all fMRI examinations. The activation was seen as early as 10 days after surgery; this effect cannot be explained by the known physiological mechanisms of nerve regeneration. Although an imagination effect cannot be excluded, the objective clinical recovery of sensory function led us to formulate the hypothesis that a connection to the somatosensory cortex was rapidly established. Additional cases and fundamental studies are needed to assess this hypothesis, but several observations were compatible with this explanation. Before surgery, imaginary motion of the amputated hand produced less intense responses than executed movements of the intact hand, whereas the normal activation pattern for right-handed subjects was found after surgery, in agreement with the good clinical motor recovery. (orig.)

  20. fMRI assessment of somatotopy in human Brodmann area 3b by electrical finger stimulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurth, R; Villringer, K; Mackert, B M; Schwiemann, J; Braun, J; Curio, G; Villringer, A; Wolf, K J

    1998-01-26

    Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) is capable of detecting focal brain activation induced by electrical stimulation of single fingers in human subjects. In eight subjects somatotopic arrangement of the second and fifth finger was found in Brodmann area 3b of the primary somatosensory cortex. In four subjects the representation area of the second finger was located lateral and inferior to the fifth finger; in one subject the somatotopy was reversed. In three subjects representation areas of the two fingers in Brodmann area 3b were found overlapping. Additional activated areas were found on the crown of ipsilateral and contralateral postcentral gyrus (Brodmann areas 1 and 2) and posterior parietal cortex.

  1. Optogenetic conditioning of paradigm and pattern discrimination in the rat somatosensory system.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kenta Abe

    Full Text Available The rodent whisker-barrel cortical system is a model for studying somatosensory discrimination at high spatiotemporal precision. Here, we applied optogenetics to produce somatosensory inputs in the whisker area using one of transgenic rat lines, W-TChR2V4, which expresses channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2 in the mechanoreceptive nerve endings around whisker follicles. An awake W-TChR2V4 rat was head-fixed and irradiated by blue LED light on the whisker area with a paradigm conditioned with a reward. The Go task was designed so the rat is allowed to receive a reward, when it licked the nozzle within 5 s after photostimulation. The No-go task was designed so as the rat has to withhold licking for at least 5 s to obtain a reward after photostimulation. The Go-task conditioning was established within 1 hr of training with a reduction in the reaction time and increase of the success rate. To investigate the relationship between the spatiotemporal pattern of sensory inputs and the behavioral output, we designed a multi-optical fiber system that irradiates the whisker area at 9 spots in a 3×3 matrix. Although the Go-task conditioning was established using synchronous irradiation of 9 spots, the success rate was decreased with an increase of the reaction time for the asynchronous irradiation. After conditioning to the Go task, the rat responded to the blue LED flash irradiated on the barrel cortex, where many neurons also express ChR2, or photostimulation of the contralateral whisker area with a similar reaction time and success rate. Synchronous activation of the peripheral mechanoreceptive nerves is suggested to drive a neural circuit in the somatosensory cortex that efficiently couples with the decision. Our optogenetic system would enable the precise evaluation of the psychophysical values, such as the reaction time and success rate, to gain some insight into the brain mechanisms underlying conditioned behaviors.

  2. Functional connectivity between somatosensory and motor brain areas predicts individual differences in motor learning by observing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGregor, Heather R; Gribble, Paul L

    2017-08-01

    Action observation can facilitate the acquisition of novel motor skills; however, there is considerable individual variability in the extent to which observation promotes motor learning. Here we tested the hypothesis that individual differences in brain function or structure can predict subsequent observation-related gains in motor learning. Subjects underwent an anatomical MRI scan and resting-state fMRI scans to assess preobservation gray matter volume and preobservation resting-state functional connectivity (FC), respectively. On the following day, subjects observed a video of a tutor adapting her reaches to a novel force field. After observation, subjects performed reaches in a force field as a behavioral assessment of gains in motor learning resulting from observation. We found that individual differences in resting-state FC, but not gray matter volume, predicted postobservation gains in motor learning. Preobservation resting-state FC between left primary somatosensory cortex and bilateral dorsal premotor cortex, primary motor cortex, and primary somatosensory cortex and left superior parietal lobule was positively correlated with behavioral measures of postobservation motor learning. Sensory-motor resting-state FC can thus predict the extent to which observation will promote subsequent motor learning. NEW & NOTEWORTHY We show that individual differences in preobservation brain function can predict subsequent observation-related gains in motor learning. Preobservation resting-state functional connectivity within a sensory-motor network may be used as a biomarker for the extent to which observation promotes motor learning. This kind of information may be useful if observation is to be used as a way to boost neuroplasticity and sensory-motor recovery for patients undergoing rehabilitation for diseases that impair movement such as stroke. Copyright © 2017 the American Physiological Society.

  3. Music-induced cortical plasticity and lateral inhibition in the human auditory cortex as foundations for tonal tinnitus treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pantev, Christo; Okamoto, Hidehiko; Teismann, Henning

    2012-01-01

    Over the past 15 years, we have studied plasticity in the human auditory cortex by means of magnetoencephalography (MEG). Two main topics nurtured our curiosity: the effects of musical training on plasticity in the auditory system, and the effects of lateral inhibition. One of our plasticity studies found that listening to notched music for 3 h inhibited the neuronal activity in the auditory cortex that corresponded to the center-frequency of the notch, suggesting suppression of neural activity by lateral inhibition. Subsequent research on this topic found that suppression was notably dependent upon the notch width employed, that the lower notch-edge induced stronger attenuation of neural activity than the higher notch-edge, and that auditory focused attention strengthened the inhibitory networks. Crucially, the overall effects of lateral inhibition on human auditory cortical activity were stronger than the habituation effects. Based on these results we developed a novel treatment strategy for tonal tinnitus-tailor-made notched music training (TMNMT). By notching the music energy spectrum around the individual tinnitus frequency, we intended to attract lateral inhibition to auditory neurons involved in tinnitus perception. So far, the training strategy has been evaluated in two studies. The results of the initial long-term controlled study (12 months) supported the validity of the treatment concept: subjective tinnitus loudness and annoyance were significantly reduced after TMNMT but not when notching spared the tinnitus frequencies. Correspondingly, tinnitus-related auditory evoked fields (AEFs) were significantly reduced after training. The subsequent short-term (5 days) training study indicated that training was more effective in the case of tinnitus frequencies ≤ 8 kHz compared to tinnitus frequencies >8 kHz, and that training should be employed over a long-term in order to induce more persistent effects. Further development and evaluation of TMNMT therapy

  4. Music-induced cortical plasticity and lateral inhibition in the human auditory cortex as foundations for tonal tinnitus treatment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christo ePantev

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Over the past 15 years, we have studied plasticity in the human auditory cortex by means of magnetoencephalography (MEG. Two main topics nurtured our curiosity: the effects of musical training on plasticity in the auditory system, and the effects of lateral inhibition. One of our plasticity studies found that listening to notched music for three hours inhibited the neuronal activity in the auditory cortex that corresponded to the center-frequency of the notch, suggesting suppression of neural activity by lateral inhibition. Crucially, the overall effects of lateral inhibition on human auditory cortical activity were stronger than the habituation effects. Based on these results we developed a novel treatment strategy for tonal tinnitus - tailor-made notched music training (TMNMT. By notching the music energy spectrum around the individual tinnitus frequency, we intended to attract lateral inhibition to auditory neurons involved in tinnitus perception. So far, the training strategy has been evaluated in two studies. The results of the initial long-term controlled study (12 months supported the validity of the treatment concept: subjective tinnitus loudness and annoyance were significantly reduced after TMNMT but not when notching spared the tinnitus frequencies. Correspondingly, tinnitus-related auditory evoked fields (AEFs were significantly reduced after training. The subsequent short-term (5 days training study indicated that training was more effective in the case of tinnitus frequencies ≤ 8 kHz compared to tinnitus frequencies > 8 kHz, and that training should be employed over a long-term in order to induce more persistent effects. Further development and evaluation of TMNMT therapy are planned. A goal is to transfer this novel, completely non-invasive, and low-cost treatment approach for tonal tinnitus into routine clinical practice.

  5. Ghrelin mimics fasting to enhance human hedonic, orbitofrontal cortex, and hippocampal responses to food.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldstone, Anthony P; Prechtl, Christina G; Scholtz, Samantha; Miras, Alexander D; Chhina, Navpreet; Durighel, Giuliana; Deliran, Seyedeh S; Beckmann, Christian; Ghatei, Mohammad A; Ashby, Damien R; Waldman, Adam D; Gaylinn, Bruce D; Thorner, Michael O; Frost, Gary S; Bloom, Stephen R; Bell, Jimmy D

    2014-06-01

    Ghrelin, which is a stomach-derived hormone, increases with fasting and energy restriction and may influence eating behaviors through brain hedonic reward-cognitive systems. Therefore, changes in plasma ghrelin might mediate counter-regulatory responses to a negative energy balance through changes in food hedonics. We investigated whether ghrelin administration (exogenous hyperghrelinemia) mimics effects of fasting (endogenous hyperghrelinemia) on the hedonic response and activation of brain-reward systems to food. In a crossover design, 22 healthy, nonobese adults (17 men) underwent a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) food-picture evaluation task after a 16-h overnight fast (Fasted-Saline) or after eating breakfast 95 min before scanning (730 kcal, 14% protein, 31% fat, and 55% carbohydrate) and receiving a saline (Fed-Saline) or acyl ghrelin (Fed-Ghrelin) subcutaneous injection before scanning. One male subject was excluded from the fMRI analysis because of excess head motion, which left 21 subjects with brain-activation data. Compared with the Fed-Saline visit, both ghrelin administration to fed subjects (Fed-Ghrelin) and fasting (Fasted-Saline) significantly increased the appeal of high-energy foods and associated orbitofrontal cortex activation. Both fasting and ghrelin administration also increased hippocampus activation to high-energy- and low-energy-food pictures. These similar effects of endogenous and exogenous hyperghrelinemia were not explicable by consistent changes in glucose, insulin, peptide YY, and glucagon-like peptide-1. Neither ghrelin administration nor fasting had any significant effect on nucleus accumbens, caudate, anterior insula, or amygdala activation during the food-evaluation task or on auditory, motor, or visual cortex activation during a control task. Ghrelin administration and fasting have similar acute stimulatory effects on hedonic responses and the activation of corticolimbic reward-cognitive systems during food

  6. Functional Imaging of Human Vestibular Cortex Activity Elicited by Skull Tap and Auditory Tone Burst

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noohi, Fatemeh; Kinnaird, Catherine; Wood, Scott; Bloomberg, Jacob; Mulavara, Ajitkumar; Seidler, Rachael

    2014-01-01

    The aim of the current study was to characterize the brain activation in response to two modes of vestibular stimulation: skull tap and auditory tone burst. The auditory tone burst has been used in previous studies to elicit saccular Vestibular Evoked Myogenic Potentials (VEMP) (Colebatch & Halmagyi 1992; Colebatch et al. 1994). Some researchers have reported that airconducted skull tap elicits both saccular and utricle VEMPs, while being faster and less irritating for the subjects (Curthoys et al. 2009, Wackym et al., 2012). However, it is not clear whether the skull tap and auditory tone burst elicit the same pattern of cortical activity. Both forms of stimulation target the otolith response, which provides a measurement of vestibular function independent from semicircular canals. This is of high importance for studying the vestibular disorders related to otolith deficits. Previous imaging studies have documented activity in the anterior and posterior insula, superior temporal gyrus, inferior parietal lobule, pre and post central gyri, inferior frontal gyrus, and the anterior cingulate cortex in response to different modes of vestibular stimulation (Bottini et al., 1994; Dieterich et al., 2003; Emri et al., 2003; Schlindwein et al., 2008; Janzen et al., 2008). Here we hypothesized that the skull tap elicits the similar pattern of cortical activity as the auditory tone burst. Subjects put on a set of MR compatible skull tappers and headphones inside the 3T GE scanner, while lying in supine position, with eyes closed. All subjects received both forms of the stimulation, however, the order of stimulation with auditory tone burst and air-conducted skull tap was counterbalanced across subjects. Pneumatically powered skull tappers were placed bilaterally on the cheekbones. The vibration of the cheekbone was transmitted to the vestibular cortex, resulting in vestibular response (Halmagyi et al., 1995). Auditory tone bursts were also delivered for comparison. To validate

  7. Influence of position and stimulation parameters on intracortical inhibition and facilitation in human tongue motor cortex

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kothari, Mohit; Svensson, Peter; Nielsen, Jørgen Feldbæk

    2014-01-01

    Paired-pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation (ppTMS) can be used to assess short-interval intracortical inhibitory (SICI) and facilitatory (ICF) networks. Many methodological parameters may however influence the outcome. The aim of the study was to examine the influence of body positions (recline...... motor cortex and motor evoked potentials (MEPs) were recorded from contralateral tongue muscles. In study 1, single pulse and three ppTMS ISIs: 2, 10, 15 ms were applied 8 times each in three blocks (TS: 120%, 140% and 160% of resting motor threshold (rMT); CS: 80% of rMT) in two different body...... positions (recline and supine) randomly. In study 2, single pulse and four ppTMS ISIs: 2, 2.5, 3, 3.5 ms were applied 8 times each in randomized order in two blocks (CS: 70% and 80% of rMT; TS: 120% of rMT). There was a significant effect of body position (P=0.049), TS intensities (P

  8. Dynamic Correlations between Intrinsic Connectivity and Extrinsic Connectivity of the Auditory Cortex in Humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cui, Zhuang; Wang, Qian; Gao, Yayue; Wang, Jing; Wang, Mengyang; Teng, Pengfei; Guan, Yuguang; Zhou, Jian; Li, Tianfu; Luan, Guoming; Li, Liang

    2017-01-01

    The arrival of sound signals in the auditory cortex (AC) triggers both local and inter-regional signal propagations over time up to hundreds of milliseconds and builds up both intrinsic functional connectivity (iFC) and extrinsic functional connectivity (eFC) of the AC. However, interactions between iFC and eFC are largely unknown. Using intracranial stereo-electroencephalographic recordings in people with drug-refractory epilepsy, this study mainly investigated the temporal dynamic of the relationships between iFC and eFC of the AC. The results showed that a Gaussian wideband-noise burst markedly elicited potentials in both the AC and numerous higher-order cortical regions outside the AC (non-auditory cortices). Granger causality analyses revealed that in the earlier time window, iFC of the AC was positively correlated with both eFC from the AC to the inferior temporal gyrus and that to the inferior parietal lobule. While in later periods, the iFC of the AC was positively correlated with eFC from the precentral gyrus to the AC and that from the insula to the AC. In conclusion, dual-directional interactions occur between iFC and eFC of the AC at different time windows following the sound stimulation and may form the foundation underlying various central auditory processes, including auditory sensory memory, object formation, integrations between sensory, perceptional, attentional, motor, emotional, and executive processes.

  9. Dynamic Correlations between Intrinsic Connectivity and Extrinsic Connectivity of the Auditory Cortex in Humans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhuang Cui

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available The arrival of sound signals in the auditory cortex (AC triggers both local and inter-regional signal propagations over time up to hundreds of milliseconds and builds up both intrinsic functional connectivity (iFC and extrinsic functional connectivity (eFC of the AC. However, interactions between iFC and eFC are largely unknown. Using intracranial stereo-electroencephalographic recordings in people with drug-refractory epilepsy, this study mainly investigated the temporal dynamic of the relationships between iFC and eFC of the AC. The results showed that a Gaussian wideband-noise burst markedly elicited potentials in both the AC and numerous higher-order cortical regions outside the AC (non-auditory cortices. Granger causality analyses revealed that in the earlier time window, iFC of the AC was positively correlated with both eFC from the AC to the inferior temporal gyrus and that to the inferior parietal lobule. While in later periods, the iFC of the AC was positively correlated with eFC from the precentral gyrus to the AC and that from the insula to the AC. In conclusion, dual-directional interactions occur between iFC and eFC of the AC at different time windows following the sound stimulation and may form the foundation underlying various central auditory processes, including auditory sensory memory, object formation, integrations between sensory, perceptional, attentional, motor, emotional, and executive processes.

  10. Gesture Decoding Using ECoG Signals from Human Sensorimotor Cortex: A Pilot Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yue Li

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Electrocorticography (ECoG has been demonstrated as a promising neural signal source for developing brain-machine interfaces (BMIs. However, many concerns about the disadvantages brought by large craniotomy for implanting the ECoG grid limit the clinical translation of ECoG-based BMIs. In this study, we collected clinical ECoG signals from the sensorimotor cortex of three epileptic participants when they performed hand gestures. The ECoG power spectrum in hybrid frequency bands was extracted to build a synchronous real-time BMI system. High decoding accuracy of the three gestures was achieved in both offline analysis (85.7%, 84.5%, and 69.7% and online tests (80% and 82%, tested on two participants only. We found that the decoding performance was maintained even with a subset of channels selected by a greedy algorithm. More importantly, these selected channels were mostly distributed along the central sulcus and clustered in the area of 3 interelectrode squares. Our findings of the reduced and clustered distribution of ECoG channels further supported the feasibility of clinically implementing the ECoG-based BMI system for the control of hand gestures.

  11. Mapping face categorization in the human ventral occipitotemporal cortex with direct neural intracranial recordings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rossion, Bruno; Jacques, Corentin; Jonas, Jacques

    2018-02-26

    The neural basis of face categorization has been widely investigated with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), identifying a set of face-selective local regions in the ventral occipitotemporal cortex (VOTC). However, indirect recording of neural activity with fMRI is associated with large fluctuations of signal across regions, often underestimating face-selective responses in the anterior VOTC. While direct recording of neural activity with subdural grids of electrodes (electrocorticography, ECoG) or depth electrodes (stereotactic electroencephalography, SEEG) offers a unique opportunity to fill this gap in knowledge, these studies rather reveal widely distributed face-selective responses. Moreover, intracranial recordings are complicated by interindividual variability in neuroanatomy, ambiguity in definition, and quantification of responses of interest, as well as limited access to sulci with ECoG. Here, we propose to combine SEEG in large samples of individuals with fast periodic visual stimulation to objectively define, quantify, and characterize face categorization across the whole VOTC. This approach reconciles the wide distribution of neural face categorization responses with their (right) hemispheric and regional specialization, and reveals several face-selective regions in anterior VOTC sulci. We outline the challenges of this research program to understand the neural basis of face categorization and high-level visual recognition in general. © 2018 New York Academy of Sciences.

  12. Contralateral white noise selectively changes left human auditory cortex activity in a lexical decision task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Behne, Nicole; Wendt, Beate; Scheich, Henning; Brechmann, André

    2006-04-01

    In a previous study, we hypothesized that the approach of presenting information-bearing stimuli to one ear and noise to the other ear may be a general strategy to determine hemispheric specialization in auditory cortex (AC). In that study, we confirmed the dominant role of the right AC in directional categorization of frequency modulations by showing that fMRI activation of right but not left AC was sharply emphasized when masking noise was presented to the contralateral ear. Here, we tested this hypothesis using a lexical decision task supposed to be mainly processed in the left hemisphere. Subjects had to distinguish between pseudowords and natural words presented monaurally to the left or right ear either with or without white noise to the other ear. According to our hypothesis, we expected a strong effect of contralateral noise on fMRI activity in left AC. For the control conditions without noise, we found that activation in both auditory cortices was stronger on contralateral than on ipsilateral word stimulation consistent with a more influential contralateral than ipsilateral auditory pathway. Additional presentation of contralateral noise did not significantly change activation in right AC, whereas it led to a significant increase of activation in left AC compared with the condition without noise. This is consistent with a left hemispheric specialization for lexical decisions. Thus our results support the hypothesis that activation by ipsilateral information-bearing stimuli is upregulated mainly in the hemisphere specialized for a given task when noise is presented to the more influential contralateral ear.

  13. Spatial attention improves the quality of population codes in human visual cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saproo, Sameer; Serences, John T

    2010-08-01

    Selective attention enables sensory input from behaviorally relevant stimuli to be processed in greater detail, so that these stimuli can more accurately influence thoughts, actions, and future goals. Attention has been shown to modulate the spiking activity of single feature-selective neurons that encode basic stimulus properties (color, orientation, etc.). However, the combined output from many such neurons is required to form stable representations of relevant objects and little empirical work has formally investigated the relationship between attentional modulations on population responses and improvements in encoding precision. Here, we used functional MRI and voxel-based feature tuning functions to show that spatial attention induces a multiplicative scaling in orientation-selective population response profiles in early visual cortex. In turn, this multiplicative scaling correlates with an improvement in encoding precision, as evidenced by a concurrent increase in the mutual information between population responses and the orientation of attended stimuli. These data therefore demonstrate how multiplicative scaling of neural responses provides at least one mechanism by which spatial attention may improve the encoding precision of population codes. Increased encoding precision in early visual areas may then enhance the speed and accuracy of perceptual decisions computed by higher-order neural mechanisms.

  14. Neural cell adhesion molecule, NCAM, regulates thalamocortical axon pathfinding and the organization of the cortical somatosensory representation in mouse

    Science.gov (United States)

    Enriquez-Barreto, Lilian; Palazzetti, Cecilia; Brennaman, Leann H.; Maness, Patricia F.; Fairén, Alfonso

    2012-01-01

    To study the potential role of neural cell adhesion molecule (NCAM) in the development of thalamocortical (TC) axon topography, wild type, and NCAM null mutant mice were analyzed for NCAM expression, projection, and targeting of TC afferents within the somatosensory area of the neocortex. Here we report that NCAM and its α-2,8-linked polysialic acid (PSA) are expressed in developing TC axons during projection to the neocortex. Pathfinding of TC axons in wild type and null mutant mice was mapped using anterograde DiI labeling. At embryonic day E16.5, null mutant mice displayed misguided TC axons in the dorsal telencephalon, but not in the ventral telencephalon, an intermediate target that initially sorts TC axons toward correct neocortical areas. During the early postnatal period, rostrolateral TC axons within the internal capsule along the ventral telencephalon adopted distorted trajectories in the ventral telencephalon and failed to reach the neocortex in NCAM null mutant animals. NCAM null mutants showed abnormal segregation of layer IV barrels in a restricted portion of the somatosensory cortex. As shown by Nissl and cytochrome oxidase staining, barrels of the anterolateral barrel subfield (ALBSF) and the most distal barrels of the posteromedial barrel subfield (PMBSF) did not segregate properly in null mutant mice. These results indicate a novel role for NCAM in axonal pathfinding and topographic sorting of TC axons, which may be important for the function of specific territories of sensory representation in the somatosensory cortex. PMID:22723769

  15. Dynamical Representation of Dominance Relationships in the Human Rostromedial Prefrontal Cortex

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ligneul, R.V.A.; Obeso, I.; Ruff, C.C.; Dreher, J.C.

    2016-01-01

    Summary Humans and other primates have evolved the ability to represent their status in the group’s social hierarchy, which is essential for avoiding harm and accessing resources. Yet it remains unclear how the human brain learns dominance status and adjusts behavior accordingly during dynamic

  16. Characteristics of high affinity and low affinity adenosine binding sites in human cerebral cortex

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    John, D.; Fox, I.V.

    1986-01-01

    The binding characteristics of human brain cortical membrane fractions were evaluated to test the hypothesis that there are A 1 and A 2 adenosine binding sites. The ligands used were 2-chloro(8- 3 H) adenosine and N 6 -(adenine-2, 8- 3 H) cyclohexayladenosine. Binding of chloroadenosine to human brain cortical membranes was time dependent, reversible and concentration dependent. The kinetic constant determinations from binding studies of the adenosine receptor are presented. Utilizing tritium-cyclohexyladenosine as ligand the authors observed evidence for a high affinity binding site in human brain cortical membranes with a kd of 5 nM

  17. Functional studies of the human auditory cortex, auditory memory and musical hallucinations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Goycoolea, Marcos; Mena, Ismael; Neubauer, Sonia

    2004-01-01

    Objectives. 1. To determine which areas of the cerebral cortex are activated stimulating the left ear with pure tones, and what type of stimulation occurs (eg. excitatory or inhibitory) in these different areas. 2. To use this information as an initial step to develop a normal functional data base for future studies. 3. To try to determine if there is a biological substrate to the process of recalling previous auditory perceptions and if possible, suggest a locus for auditory memory. Method. Brain perfusion single photon emission computerized tomography (SPECT) evaluation was conducted: 1-2) Using auditory stimulation with pure tones in 4 volunteers with normal hearing. 3) In a patient with bilateral profound hearing loss who had auditory perception of previous musical experiences; while injected with Tc99m HMPAO while she was having the sensation of hearing a well known melody. Results. Both in the patient with auditory hallucinations and the normal controls -stimulated with pure tones- there was a statistically significant increase in perfusion in Brodmann's area 39, more intense on the right side (right to left p < 0.05). With a lesser intensity there was activation in the adjacent area 40 and there was intense activation also in the executive frontal cortex areas 6, 8, 9, and 10 of Brodmann. There was also activation of area 7 of Brodmann; an audio-visual association area; more marked on the right side in the patient and the normal stimulated controls. In the subcortical structures there was also marked activation in the patient with hallucinations in both lentiform nuclei, thalamus and caudate nuclei also more intense in the right hemisphere, 5, 4.7 and 4.2 S.D. above the mean respectively and 5, 3.3, and 3 S.D. above the normal mean in the left hemisphere respectively. Similar findings were observed in normal controls. Conclusions. After auditory stimulation with pure tones in the left ear of normal female volunteers, there is bilateral activation of area 39

  18. Functional Imaging of Human Vestibular Cortex Activity Elicited by Skull Tap and Auditory Tone Burst

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noohi, F.; Kinnaird, C.; Wood, S.; Bloomberg, J.; Mulavara, A.; Seidler, R.

    2016-01-01

    The current study characterizes brain activation in response to two modes of vestibular stimulation: skull tap and auditory tone burst. The auditory tone burst has been used in previous studies to elicit either the vestibulo-spinal reflex (saccular-mediated colic Vestibular Evoked Myogenic Potentials (cVEMP)), or the ocular muscle response (utricle-mediated ocular VEMP (oVEMP)). Some researchers have reported that air-conducted skull tap elicits both saccular and utricle-mediated VEMPs, while being faster and less irritating for the subjects. However, it is not clear whether the skull tap and auditory tone burst elicit the same pattern of cortical activity. Both forms of stimulation target the otolith response, which provides a measurement of vestibular function independent from semicircular canals. This is of high importance for studying otolith-specific deficits, including gait and balance problems that astronauts experience upon returning to earth. Previous imaging studies have documented activity in the anterior and posterior insula, superior temporal gyrus, inferior parietal lobule, inferior frontal gyrus, and the anterior cingulate cortex in response to different modes of vestibular stimulation. Here we hypothesized that skull taps elicit similar patterns of cortical activity as the auditory tone bursts, and previous vestibular imaging studies. Subjects wore bilateral MR compatible skull tappers and headphones inside the 3T GE scanner, while lying in the supine position, with eyes closed. Subjects received both forms of the stimulation in a counterbalanced fashion. Pneumatically powered skull tappers were placed bilaterally on the cheekbones. The vibration of the cheekbone was transmitted to the vestibular system, resulting in the vestibular cortical response. Auditory tone bursts were also delivered for comparison. To validate our stimulation method, we measured the ocular VEMP outside of the scanner. This measurement showed that both skull tap and auditory

  19. Measurement of neurovascular coupling in human motor cortex using simultaneous transcranial doppler (TCD) and electroencephalography (EEG).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alam, Monzurul; Ahmed, Ghazanfar; Ling, Yan To; Zheng, Yong-Ping

    2018-05-25

    Event-related desynchronization (ERD) is a relative power decrease of electroencephalogram (EEG) signals in a specific frequency band during physical motor execution, while transcranial Doppler (TCD) measures cerebral blood flow velocity. The objective of this study was to investigate the neurovascular coupling in the motor cortex by using an integrated EEG and TCD system, and to find any difference in hemodynamic responses in healthy young male and female adults. Approach: 30 healthy volunteers, aged 20-30 years were recruited for this study. The subjects were asked to perform a motor task for the duration of a provided visual cue. Simultaneous EEG and TCD recording was carried out using a new integrated system to detect the ERD arising from the EEG signals, and to measure the mean blood flow velocity of the left and right middle cerebral arteries from bilateral TCD signals. Main Results: The results showed a significant decrease in EEG power in mu band (7.5-12.5 Hz) during the motor task compared to the resting phase. It showed significant increase in desynchronization on the contralateral side of the motor task compared to the ipsilateral side. Mean blood flow velocity during the task phase was significantly higher in comparison with the resting phase at the contralateral side. The results also showed a significantly higher increase in the percentage of mean blood flow velocity in the contralateral side of motor task compared to the ipsilateral side. However, no significant difference in desynchronization, or change of mean blood flow velocity was found between males and females. Significance: A combined TCD-EEG system successfully detects ERD and blood flow velocity in cerebral arteries, and can be used as a useful tool to study neurovascular coupling in the brain. There is no significant difference in the hemodynamic responses in healthy young males and females. © 2018 Institute of Physics and Engineering in Medicine.

  20. Variability of in vivo linear microcrack accumulation in the cortex of elderly human ribs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amanda M. Agnew

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Excessive accumulation of microdamage in the skeleton in vivo is believed to contribute to fragility and risk of fracture, particularly in the elderly. Current knowledge of how much in vivo damage accrual varies between individuals, if at all, is lacking. In this study, paired sixth ribs from five male and five female elderly individuals (76–92 years, mean age = 84.7 years were examined using en bloc staining and fluorescent microcopy to quantify linear microcracks present at the time of death (i.e. in vivo microdamage. Crack number, crack length, crack density, and crack surface density were measured for each complete cross-section, with densities calculated using the variable of bone area (which accounts for the influence of porosity on the cortex, unlike the more frequently used cortical area, and analyzed using a two-way mixed model analysis of variance. Results indicate that while microcracks between individuals differ significantly, differences between the left and right corresponding pairs within individuals and the pleural and cutaneous cortices within each rib did not. These results suggest that systemic influences, such as differential metabolic activity, affect the accumulation of linear microcracks. Furthermore, variation in remodeling rates between individuals may be a major factor contributing to differential fracture risk in the elderly. Future work should expand to include a wider age range to examine differences in in vivo microdamage accumulation across the lifespan, as well as considering the influence of bisphosphonates on microdamage accumulation in the context of compromised remodeling rates in the elderly.

  1. Affective and cognitive prefrontal cortex projections to the lateral habenula in humans.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karin eVadovičová

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Anterior insula (AI and dorsal ACC (dACC are known to process information about pain, loss, adversities, bad, harmful or suboptimal choices and consequences that threaten survival or well-being. Also pregenual ACC (pgACC is linked to loss and pain, being activated by sad thoughts and regrets. Lateral habenula (LHb is stimulated by predicted and received pain, discomfort, aversive outcome, loss. Its chronic stimulation makes us feel worse/low and gradually stops us choosing and moving for the suboptimal or punished choices, by direct and indirect (via rostromedial tegmental nucleus RMTg inhibition of DRN and VTA/SNc. The response selectivity of LHb neurons suggests their cortical input from affective and cognitive evaluative regions that make expectations about bad, unpleasant or suboptimal outcomes. Based on these facts we predicted direct dACC, pgACC and AI projections to LHb, which form part of an adversity processing circuit that learns to avoid bad outcomes by suppressing dopamine and serotonin signal. To test this connectivity we used Diffusion Tensor Imaging (DTI. We found dACC, pgACC, AI and caudolateral OFC projections to LHb. We predicted no corticohabenular projections from the reward processing regions: medial OFC (mOFC and ventral ACC (vACC because both respond most strongly to good, high valued stimuli and outcomes, inducing dopamine and serotonin release. This lack of LHb projections was confirmed for vACC and likely for mOFC. The surprising findings were the corticohabenular projections from the cognitive prefrontal cortex regions, known for flexible reasoning, planning and combining whatever information are relevant for reaching current goals. We propose that the prefrontohabenular projections provide a teaching signal for value-based choice behaviour, to learn to deselect, avoid or inhibit the potentially harmful, low valued or wrong choices, goals, strategies, predictions and ways of doing things, to prevent bad or suboptimal

  2. A combined analysis of genome-wide expression profiling of bipolar disorder in human prefrontal cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Jinglu; Qu, Susu; Wang, Weixiao; Guo, Liyuan; Zhang, Kunlin; Chang, Suhua; Wang, Jing

    2016-11-01

    Numbers of gene expression profiling studies of bipolar disorder have been published. Besides different array chips and tissues, variety of the data processes in different cohorts aggravated the inconsistency of results of these genome-wide gene expression profiling studies. By searching the gene expression databases, we obtained six data sets for prefrontal cortex (PFC) of bipolar disorder with raw data and combinable platforms. We used standardized pre-processing and quality control procedures to analyze each data set separately and then combined them into a large gene expression matrix with 101 bipolar disorder subjects and 106 controls. A standard linear mixed-effects model was used to calculate the differentially expressed genes (DEGs). Multiple levels of sensitivity analyses and cross validation with genetic data were conducted. Functional and network analyses were carried out on basis of the DEGs. In the result, we identified 198 unique differentially expressed genes in the PFC of bipolar disorder and control. Among them, 115 DEGs were robust to at least three leave-one-out tests or different pre-processing methods; 51 DEGs were validated with genetic association signals. Pathway enrichment analysis showed these DEGs were related with regulation of neurological system, cell death and apoptosis, and several basic binding processes. Protein-protein interaction network further identified one key hub gene. We have contributed the most comprehensive integrated analysis of bipolar disorder expression profiling studies in PFC to date. The DEGs, especially those with multiple validations, may denote a common signature of bipolar disorder and contribute to the pathogenesis of disease. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Imagery of a moving object: the role of occipital cortex and human MT/V5+.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaas, Amanda; Weigelt, Sarah; Roebroeck, Alard; Kohler, Axel; Muckli, Lars

    2010-01-01

    Visual imagery--similar to visual perception--activates feature-specific and category-specific visual areas. This is frequently observed in experiments where the instruction is to imagine stimuli that have been shown immediately before the imagery task. Hence, feature-specific activation could be related to the short-term memory retrieval of previously presented sensory information. Here, we investigated mental imagery of stimuli that subjects had not seen before, eliminating the effects of short-term memory. We recorded brain activation using fMRI while subjects performed a behaviourally controlled guided imagery task in predefined retinotopic coordinates to optimize sensitivity in early visual areas. Whole brain analyses revealed activation in a parieto-frontal network and lateral-occipital cortex. Region of interest (ROI) based analyses showed activation in left hMT/V5+. Granger causality mapping taking left hMT/V5+ as source revealed an imagery-specific directed influence from the left inferior parietal lobule (IPL). Interestingly, we observed a negative BOLD response in V1-3 during imagery, modulated by the retinotopic location of the imagined motion trace. Our results indicate that rule-based motion imagery can activate higher-order visual areas involved in motion perception, with a role for top-down directed influences originating in IPL. Lower-order visual areas (V1, V2 and V3) were down-regulated during this type of imagery, possibly reflecting inhibition to avoid visual input from interfering with the imagery construction. This suggests that the activation in early visual areas observed in previous studies might be related to short- or long-term memory retrieval of specific sensory experiences.

  4. Detailed T1-Weighted Profiles from the Human Cortex Measured in Vivo at 3 Tesla MRI.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferguson, Bart; Petridou, Natalia; Fracasso, Alessio; van den Heuvel, Martijn P; Brouwer, Rachel M; Hulshoff Pol, Hilleke E; Kahn, René S; Mandl, René C W

    2018-04-01

    Studies into cortical thickness in psychiatric diseases based on T1-weighted MRI frequently report on aberrations in the cerebral cortex. Due to limitations in image resolution for studies conducted at conventional MRI field strengths (e.g. 3 Tesla (T)) this information cannot be used to establish which of the cortical layers may be implicated. Here we propose a new analysis method that computes one high-resolution average cortical profile per brain region extracting myeloarchitectural information from T1-weighted MRI scans that are routinely acquired at a conventional field strength. To assess this new method, we acquired standard T1-weighted scans at 3 T and compared them with state-of-the-art ultra-high resolution T1-weighted scans optimised for intracortical myelin contrast acquired at 7 T. Average cortical profiles were computed for seven different brain regions. Besides a qualitative comparison between the 3 T scans, 7 T scans, and results from literature, we tested if the results from dynamic time warping-based clustering are similar for the cortical profiles computed from 7 T and 3 T data. In addition, we quantitatively compared cortical profiles computed for V1, V2 and V7 for both 7 T and 3 T data using a priori information on their relative myelin concentration. Although qualitative comparisons show that at an individual level average profiles computed for 7 T have more pronounced features than 3 T profiles the results from the quantitative analyses suggest that average cortical profiles computed from T1-weighted scans acquired at 3 T indeed contain myeloarchitectural information similar to profiles computed from the scans acquired at 7 T. The proposed method therefore provides a step forward to study cortical myeloarchitecture in vivo at conventional magnetic field strength both in health and disease.

  5. Stimulus rate dependence of regional cerebral blood flow in human striate cortex, demonstrated by positron emission tomography

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fox, P.T.; Raichle, M.E.

    1984-01-01

    The purpose of this investigation was to determine the relationship between the repetition rate of a simple sensory stimulus and regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) in the human brain. Positron emission tomography (PET), using intravenously administered H 2 ( 15 )O as the diffusible blood-flow tracer, was employed for all CBF measurements. The use of H 2 ( 15 )O with PET allowed eight CBF measurements to be made in rapid sequence under multiple stimulation conditions without removing the subject from the tomograph. Nine normal volunteers each underwent a series of eight H2( 15 )O PET measurements of CBF. Initial and final scans were made during visual deprivation. The six intervening scans were made during visual activation with patterned-flash stimuli given in random order at 1.0-, 3.9-, 7.8-, 15.5-, 33.1-, and 61-Hz repetition rates. The region of greatest rCBF increase was determined. Within this region the rCBF was determined for every test condition and then expressed as the percentage change from the value of the initial unstimulated scan (rCBF% delta). In every subject, striate cortex rCBF% delta varied systematically with stimulus rate. Between 0 and 7.8 Hz, rCBF% delta was a linear function of stimulus repetition rate. The rCBF response peaked at 7.8 Hz and then declined. The rCBF% delta during visual stimulation was significantly greater than that during visual deprivation for every stimulus rate except 1.0 Hz. The anatomical localization of the region of peak rCBF response was determined for every subject to be the mesial occipital lobes along the calcarine fissure, primary visual cortex. Stimulus rate is a significant determinant of rCBF response in the visual cortex. Investigators of brain responses to selective activation procedures should be aware of the potential effects of stimulus rate on rCBF and other measurements of cerebral metabolism

  6. Computer-aided training sensorimotor cortex functions in humans before the upper limb transplantation using virtual reality and sensory feedback.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurzynski, Marek; Jaskolska, Anna; Marusiak, Jaroslaw; Wolczowski, Andrzej; Bierut, Przemyslaw; Szumowski, Lukasz; Witkowski, Jerzy; Kisiel-Sajewicz, Katarzyna

    2017-08-01

    One of the biggest problems of upper limb transplantation is lack of certainty as to whether a patient will be able to control voluntary movements of transplanted hands. Based on findings of the recent research on brain cortex plasticity, a premise can be drawn that mental training supported with visual and sensory feedback can cause structural and f