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The phase-locking of auditory gamma band responses in humans is sensitive to task processing

, : The phase-locking of auditory gamma band responses in humans is sensitive to task processing. Neuroreport 8(18): 3999-4004

The present study assessed the effects of stimulus task-relevance and certainty on early and late 40 Hz (gamma) band responses (GBRs) in humans. Auditory GBRs of nine young adults were recorded in passive listening, simple reaction task, and choice-reaction task (target probability = 0.5) conditions and evaluated in three consecutive post-stimulus periods (0-120, 120-250, 250-400 ms) corresponding to the serial occurrence of gamma oscillation bursts. Amplitude and phase-locking of GBRs within these bursts were analysed separately at the level of single sweeps by applying a method that allows the independent quantification of between-sweep synchronization. Major results showed that the effects of stimulus certainty and task relevance on single response amplitude were specific and different from the effects on the phase-locking. The functional involvement of the early and late auditory gamma responses was distinct: early auditory gamma band responses appear primarily associated with focused attention, while the late gamma responses vary with motor-task relevance. It is concluded that along with power measures, the stability of phase-locking of gamma band responses should be regarded as a functionally meaningful parameter that varies with processing demands and recording site.


PMID: 9462481

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