Health

Brain cortex may regulate the need for sleep

Researchers at the University of Oxford have now uncovered a new target for sleep investigations within the mammalian brain—the cerebral cortex. The paper was published today in Nature Neuroscience.

Neuroscience

Imagined music and silence trigger similar brain activity

Imagining a song triggers similar brain activity as moments of silence in music, according to a pair of studies recently published in JNeurosci. The results reveal how the brain continues responding to music, even when ...

Electroencephalography

Electroencephalography (EEG) is the recording of electrical activity along the scalp produced by the firing of neurons within the brain. In clinical contexts, EEG refers to the recording of the brain's spontaneous electrical activity over a short period of time, usually 20–40 minutes, as recorded from multiple electrodes placed on the scalp. In neurology, the main diagnostic application of EEG is in the case of epilepsy, as epileptic activity can create clear abnormalities on a standard EEG study. A secondary clinical use of EEG is in the diagnosis of coma and encephalopathies. EEG used to be a first-line method for the diagnosis of tumors, stroke and other focal brain disorders, but this use has decreased with the advent of anatomical imaging techniques such as MRI and CT.

Derivatives of the EEG technique include evoked potentials (EP), which involves averaging the EEG activity time-locked to the presentation of a stimulus of some sort (visual, somatosensory, or auditory). Event-related potentials refer to averaged EEG responses that are time-locked to more complex processing of stimuli; this technique is used in cognitive science, cognitive psychology, and psychophysiological research.

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