17,141 research outputs found

    Fully Complex Magnetoencephalography

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    Complex numbers appear naturally in biology whenever a system can be analyzed in the frequency domain, such as physiological data from magnetoencephalography (MEG). For example, the MEG steady state response to a modulated auditory stimulus generates a complex magnetic field for each MEG channel, equal to the Fourier transform at the stimulus modulation frequency. The complex nature of these data sets, often not taken advantage of, is fully exploited here with new methods. Whole-head, complex magnetic data can be used to estimate complex neural current sources, and standard methods of source estimation naturally generalize for complex sources. We show that a general complex neural vector source is described by its location, magnitude, and direction, but also by a phase and by an additional perpendicular component. We give natural interpretations of all the parameters for the complex equivalent-current dipole by linking them to the underlying neurophysiology. We demonstrate complex magnetic fields, and their equivalent fully complex current sources, with both simulations and experimental data.Comment: 23 pages, 1 table, 5 figures; to appear in Journal of Neuroscience Method

    Influence of metallic artifact filtering on MEG signals for source localization during interictal epileptiform activity

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    Objective. Medical intractable epilepsy is a common condition that affects 40% of epileptic patients that generally have to undergo resective surgery. Magnetoencephalography (MEG) has been increasingly used to identify the epileptogenic foci through equivalent current dipole (ECD) modeling, one of the most accepted methods to obtain an accurate localization of interictal epileptiform discharges (IEDs). Modeling requires that MEG signals are adequately preprocessed to reduce interferences, a task that has been greatly improved by the use of blind source separation (BSS) methods. MEG recordings are highly sensitive to metallic interferences originated inside the head by implanted intracranial electrodes, dental prosthesis, etc and also coming from external sources such as pacemakers or vagal stimulators. To reduce these artifacts, a BSS-based fully automatic procedure was recently developed and validated, showing an effective reduction of metallic artifacts in simulated and real signals (Migliorelli et al 2015 J. Neural Eng. 12 046001). The main objective of this study was to evaluate its effects in the detection of IEDs and ECD modeling of patients with focal epilepsy and metallic interference. Approach. A comparison between the resulting positions of ECDs was performed: without removing metallic interference; rejecting only channels with large metallic artifacts; and after BSS-based reduction. Measures of dispersion and distance of ECDs were defined to analyze the results. Main results. The relationship between the artifact-to-signal ratio and ECD fitting showed that higher values of metallic interference produced highly scattered dipoles. Results revealed a significant reduction on dispersion using the BSS-based reduction procedure, yielding feasible locations of ECDs in contrast to the other two approaches. Significance. The automatic BSS-based method can be applied to MEG datasets affected by metallic artifacts as a processing step to improve the localization of epileptic foci.Postprint (published version

    Magnetoencephalography in Stroke Recovery and Rehabilitation

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    Magnetoencephalography (MEG) is a non-invasive neurophysiological technique used to study the cerebral cortex. Currently, MEG is mainly used clinically to localize epileptic foci and eloquent brain areas in order to avoid damage during neurosurgery. MEG might, however, also be of help in monitoring stroke recovery and rehabilitation. This review focuses on experimental use of MEG in neurorehabilitation. MEG has been employed to detect early modifications in neuroplasticity and connectivity, but there is insufficient evidence as to whether these methods are sensitive enough to be used as a clinical diagnostic test. MEG has also been exploited to derive the relationship between brain activity and movement kinematics for a motor-based brain-computer interface. In the current body of experimental research, MEG appears to be a powerful tool in neurorehabilitation, but it is necessary to produce new data to confirm its clinical utility

    Desynchronization of pathological low-frequency brain activity by the hypnotic drug zolpidem.

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    Reports of the beneficial effects of the hypnotic imidazopyridine, zolpidem, described in persistent vegetative state^1, 2^ have been replicated recently in brain-injured and cognitively impaired patients^3-7^. Previous single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) studies have suggested that sub-sedative doses of zolpidem increased regional cerebral perfusion in affected areas^5, 8^, implying enhanced neuronal metabolic activity; which has led to speculation that zolpidem 'reawakens' functionally dormant cortex. However, a neuronal mechanism by which this hypnotic drug affords benefits to brain injured patients has yet to be demonstrated. Here, we report the action of sub-sedative doses of zolpidem on neuronal network oscillatory activity in human brain, measured using pharmaco-magnetoencephalography (pharmaco-MEG). Study participant JP suffered a stroke in 1996, causing major damage to the left hemisphere that impaired aspects of both motor and cognitive function. Pharmaco-MEG analyses revealed robust and persistent pathological theta (4-10Hz) and beta (15-30Hz) oscillations within the lesion penumbra and surrounding cortex. Administration of zolpidem (5mg) reduced the power of pathological theta and beta oscillations in all regions of the lesioned hemisphere. This desynchronizing effect correlated well with zolpidem uptake (occurring approximately 40 minutes after acute administration) and was coincident with marked improvements in cognitive and motor function. Control experiments revealed no effect of placebo, while a structurally unrelated hypnotic, zopiclone, administered at a comparable dose (3.5mg) elicited widespread increases in cortical oscillatory power in the beta (15-30Hz) band without functional improvement. These results suggest that in JP, specific motor and cognitive impairments are related to increased low-frequency oscillatory neuronal network activity. Zolpidem is unique amongst hypnotic drugs in its ability to desynchronize such pathological low-frequency activity, thereby restoring cognitive function

    An inversion method based on random sampling for real-time MEG neuroimaging

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    The MagnetoEncephaloGraphy (MEG) is a non-invasive neuroimaging technique with a high temporal resolution which can be successfully used in real-time applications, such as brain-computer interface training or neurofeedback rehabilitation. The localization of the active area of the brain from MEG data results in a highly ill-posed and ill-conditioned inverse problem that requires fast and efficient inversion methods to be solved. In this paper we use an inversion method based on random spatial sampling to solve the MEG inverse problem. The method is fast, efficient and has a low computational load. The numerical tests show that the method can produce accurate map of the electric activity inside the brain even in case of deep neural sources

    Magnetoencephalography as a tool in psychiatric research: current status and perspective

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    The application of neuroimaging to provide mechanistic insights into circuit dysfunctions in major psychiatric conditions and the development of biomarkers are core challenges in current psychiatric research. In this review, we propose that recent technological and analytic advances in Magnetoencephalography (MEG), a technique which allows the measurement of neuronal events directly and non-invasively with millisecond resolution, provides novel opportunities to address these fundamental questions. Because of its potential in delineating normal and abnormal brain dynamics, we propose that MEG provides a crucial tool to advance our understanding of pathophysiological mechanisms of major neuropsychiatric conditions, such as Schizophrenia, Autism Spectrum Disorders, and the dementias. In our paper, we summarize the mechanisms underlying the generation of MEG signals and the tools available to reconstruct generators and underlying networks using advanced source-reconstruction techniques. We then survey recent studies that have utilized MEG to examine aberrant rhythmic activity in neuropsychiatric disorders. This is followed by links with preclinical research, which have highlighted possible neurobiological mechanisms, such as disturbances in excitation/inhibition parameters, which could account for measured changes in neural oscillations. In the final section of the paper, challenges as well as novel methodological developments are discussed which could pave the way for a widespread application of MEG in translational research with the aim of developing biomarkers for early detection and diagnosis

    Microtesla MRI of the human brain combined with MEG

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    One of the challenges in functional brain imaging is integration of complementary imaging modalities, such as magnetoencephalography (MEG) and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). MEG, which uses highly sensitive superconducting quantum interference devices (SQUIDs) to directly measure magnetic fields of neuronal currents, cannot be combined with conventional high-field MRI in a single instrument. Indirect matching of MEG and MRI data leads to significant co-registration errors. A recently proposed imaging method - SQUID-based microtesla MRI - can be naturally combined with MEG in the same system to directly provide structural maps for MEG-localized sources. It enables easy and accurate integration of MEG and MRI/fMRI, because microtesla MR images can be precisely matched to structural images provided by high-field MRI and other techniques. Here we report the first images of the human brain by microtesla MRI, together with auditory MEG (functional) data, recorded using the same seven-channel SQUID system during the same imaging session. The images were acquired at 46 microtesla measurement field with pre-polarization at 30 mT. We also estimated transverse relaxation times for different tissues at microtesla fields. Our results demonstrate feasibility and potential of human brain imaging by microtesla MRI. They also show that two new types of imaging equipment - low-cost systems for anatomical MRI of the human brain at microtesla fields, and more advanced instruments for combined functional (MEG) and structural (microtesla MRI) brain imaging - are practical.Comment: 8 pages, 5 figures - accepted by JM

    Spatial filtering in multichannel magnetoencephalography

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    Partial differential equations in boundary-value problems have been studied in order to estimate the influence of several geometrical and physical parameters involved in the outward transmission of the brain's magnetic field. Explicit Green kernels are used to obtain integral forms of generalized solutions which can be deduced from each other, as expressed over concentric spherical surfaces. That leads to numerical applications dealing with the radial component of the magnetic field. From this study, a new spatial filtering is proposed as a possible improvement in two-dimensional magnetoencephalographic mapping using large multisensors