web analytics
EEG / MEG Neural Oscillations Neural Phase Papers Publications

Strauß again — in Jour­nal of Neuroscience

Alum­na Dr. Antje Strauß just got anoth­er paper on:

Alpha Phase Deter­mines Suc­cess­ful Lex­i­cal Deci­sion in Noise

by Antje Strauß, Mol­ly Hen­ry, Math­ias Scharinger, and Jonas Obleser

appeared in Jour­nal of Neu­ro­science. Check the abstract below;

Psy­chophys­i­cal tar­get detec­tion has been shown to be mod­u­lat­ed by slow oscil­la­to­ry brain phase. How­ev­er, thus far, only low-lev­el sen­so­ry stim­uli have been used as tar­gets. The cur­rent human elec­troen­cephalog­ra­phy (EEG) study exam­ined the influ­ence of neur­al oscil­la­to­ry phase on a lex­i­cal-deci­sion task per­formed for stim­uli embed­ded in noise. Neur­al phase angles were com­pared for cor­rect ver­sus incor­rect lex­i­cal deci­sions using a phase bifur­ca­tion index (BI), which quan­ti­fies dif­fer­ences in mean phase angles and phase con­cen­tra­tions between cor­rect and incor­rect tri­als. Neur­al phase angles in the alpha fre­quen­cy range (8–12 Hz) over right ante­ri­or sen­sors were approx­i­mate­ly antiphase in a pres­tim­u­lus time win­dow, and thus suc­cess­ful­ly dis­tin­guished between cor­rect and incor­rect lex­i­cal deci­sions. More­over, alpha-band oscil­la­tions were again approx­i­mate­ly antiphase across par­tic­i­pants for cor­rect ver­sus incor­rect tri­als dur­ing a lat­er peri­s­tim­u­lus time win­dow (∼500 ms) at left-cen­tral elec­trodes. Strik­ing­ly, lex­i­cal deci­sion accu­ra­cy was not pre­dict­ed by either event-relat­ed poten­tials (ERPs) or oscil­la­to­ry pow­er mea­sures. We sug­gest that cor­rect lex­i­cal deci­sions depend both on suc­cess­ful sen­so­ry pro­cess­ing, which is made pos­si­ble by the align­ment of stim­u­lus onset with an opti­mal alpha phase, as well as inte­gra­tion and weight­ing of deci­sion­al infor­ma­tion, which is cou­pled to alpha phase imme­di­ate­ly fol­low­ing the crit­i­cal manip­u­la­tion that dif­fer­en­ti­at­ed words from pseu­do­words. The cur­rent study con­sti­tutes a first step toward char­ac­ter­iz­ing the role of dynam­ic oscil­la­to­ry brain states for high­er cog­ni­tive func­tions, such as spo­ken word recognition.
EEG / MEG Linguistics Neural Oscillations Papers Publications

New paper out: Dis­so­ci­a­tion of alpha and theta oscil­la­tions Strauß, Kotz, Scharinger, Obleser

We are very hap­py to announce that PhD stu­dent Antje Strauß got her paper

Alpha and theta brain oscil­la­tions index dis­so­cia­ble process­es in spo­ken word recognition

accept­ed at Neu­roIm­age. Con­grat­u­la­tions! Find her paper here.

See the Abstract
Slow neur­al oscil­la­tions (∼ 1–15 Hz) are thought to orches­trate the neur­al process­es of spo­ken lan­guage com­pre­hen­sion. How­ev­er, func­tion­al sub­di­vi­sions with­in this broad range of fre­quen­cies are dis­put­ed, with most stud­ies hypoth­e­siz­ing only about sin­gle fre­quen­cy bands. The present study uti­lizes an estab­lished par­a­digm of spo­ken word recog­ni­tion (lex­i­cal deci­sion) to test the hypoth­e­sis that with­in the slow neur­al oscil­la­to­ry fre­quen­cy range, dis­tinct func­tion­al sig­na­tures and cor­ti­cal net­works can be iden­ti­fied at least for theta- (∼ 3–7 Hz) and alpha-fre­quen­cies (∼ 8–12 Hz). Lis­ten­ers per­formed an audi­to­ry lex­i­cal deci­sion task on a set of items that formed a word–pseudoword con­tin­u­um: rang­ing from (1) real words over (2) ambigu­ous pseu­do­words (devi­at­ing from real words only in one vow­el; com­pa­ra­ble to nat­ur­al mis­pro­nun­ci­a­tions in speech) to (3) pseu­do­words (clear­ly devi­at­ing from real words by ran­dom­ized syl­la­bles). By means of time–frequency analy­sis and spa­tial fil­ter­ing, we observed a dis­so­ci­a­tion into dis­tinct but simul­ta­ne­ous pat­terns of alpha pow­er sup­pres­sion and theta pow­er enhance­ment. Alpha exhib­it­ed a para­met­ric sup­pres­sion as items increas­ing­ly matched real words,in line with low­ered func­tion­al inhi­bi­tion in a left-dom­i­nant lex­i­cal pro­cess­ing net­work for more word-like input. Simul­ta­ne­ous­ly, theta pow­er in a bilat­er­al fron­to-tem­po­ral net­work was selec­tive­ly enhanced for ambigu­ous pseu­do­words only. Thus, enhanced alpha pow­er can neu­ral­ly “gate” lex­i­cal inte­gra­tion, while enhanced theta pow­er might index func­tion­al­ly more spe­cif­ic ambi­gu­i­ty-res­o­lu­tion process­es. To this end, a joint analy­sis of both fre­quen­cy bands pro­vides neur­al evi­dence for par­al­lel process­es in achiev­ing spo­ken word recognition.


  • Strauβ A1, Kotz SA2, Scharinger M3, Obleser J3. Alpha and theta brain oscil­la­tions index dis­so­cia­ble process­es in spo­ken word recog­ni­tion. Neu­roim­age. 2014 Apr 18. PMID: 24747736. [Open with Read]