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The role of delta and theta oscillations during ego-motion in healthy adult volunteers.

Exp Brain Res. 2021 Feb 3. doi: 10.1007/s00221-020-06030-3. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 33534022.

Authors/Editors: Ertl M, Zu Eulenburg P, Woller M, Dieterich M.
Publication Date: 2021


The successful cortical processing of multisensory input typically requires the integration of data represented in different reference systems to perform many fundamental tasks, such as bipedal locomotion. Animal studies have provided insights into the integration processes performed by the neocortex and have identified region specific tuning curves for different reference frames during ego-motion. Yet, there remains almost no data on this topic in humans.In this study, an experiment originally performed in animal research with the aim to identify brain regions modulated by the position of the head and eyes relative to a translational ego-motion was adapted for humans. Subjects sitting on a motion platform were accelerated along a translational pathway with either eyes and head aligned or a 20° yaw-plane offset relative to the motion direction while EEG was recorded.Using a distributed source localization approach, it was found that activity in area PFm, a part of Brodmann area 40, was modulated by the congruency of translational motion direction, eye, and head position. In addition, an asymmetry between the hemispheres in the opercular-insular region was observed during the cortical processing of the vestibular input. A frequency specific analysis revealed that low-frequency oscillations in the delta- and theta-band are modulated by vestibular stimulation. Source-localization estimated that the observed low-frequency oscillations are generated by vestibular core-regions, such as the parieto-opercular region and frontal areas like the mid-orbital gyrus and the medial frontal gyrus.



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