Project 1
Project 2
Project 3
Project 4
Project 5
Project 6
Center Cores


Project 2

Neuro-oscillations, sensation and neurocognition

Project 2 aims to:

  • Determine how oscillatory entrainment contributes to active sensory processing
  • Define the role of neuronal oscillations in ERP generation
  • Investigate the role of NMDA receptor dysfunction in sensory processing deficits and related ERP abnormalities

Sensory processing deficits are a key component of schizophrenia.  This project utilizes a primate model to investigate mechanisms underlying cognitive function and dysfunction.  We and others have recently demonstrated that neuronal oscillations are essential components or “instruments” of brain operation, and that neural oscillatory rhythms are organized in a hierarchical fashion, with theta band amplitude coupled to delta oscillation phase, and gamma band amplitude coupled to theta oscillation phase. While this hierarchical organization is evident when the system is at “rest,” it is also dynamic, and clearly modifiable by active cognitive operations such as attention. Hierarchical cross frequency coupling permits optimization of sensory processing and mediates effects of attention both across and within sensory systems. 

This project investigates mechanisms underlying oscillatory entrainment using intracranial recordings in monkeys trained to perform both intermodal and intramodal attention tasks.  One monkey is studied per year.  Monkeys are implanted to permit intracranial recording and training on appropriate behavioral tasks.  Recordings are then obtained from sensory cortex in response to attended vs. unattended stimuli and mechanisms of attentional modulation of sensory processing are assessed.  Principal analyses are conducted in the frequency domain, with special emphasis on the mechanistic roles of oscillatory phase manipulation and cross-frequency coupling in attentional modulation of sensory processing. Finally, effects of NMDA antagonists are evaluated on local processes underlying attentional modulation using focal intracortical infusion techniques, permitting assessment of the degree to which NMDA manipulations reproduce patterns of dysfunction observed in schizophrenia.

Investigators: Charles Schroeder, PhD (Principal Investigator)