Cortical reorganization and phantom phenomena in congenital and traumatic upper-extremity amputees
1998, Flor, Herta, Elbert, Thomas, Mühlnickel, Werner, Pantev, Christo, Wienbruch, Christian, Taub, Edward
The relationship between phantom limb phenomena and cortical reorganization was examined in five subjects with congenital absence of an upper limb and nine traumatic amputees. Neuromagnetic source imaging revealed minimal reorganization of primary somatosensory cortex in the congenital amputees (M=0.69 cm, SD 0.24) and the traumatic amputees without phantom limb pain (M=0.27 cm, SD 0.25); the amputees with phantom limb pain showed massive cortical reorganization (M=2.22 cm, SD 0.78). Phantom limb pain and nonpainful phantom limb phenomena were absent in the congenital amputees. Whereas phantom limb pain was positively related to cortical reorganization (r=0.87), nonpainful phantom phenomena were not significantly correlated with cortical reorganization (r=0.34). Sensory discrimination was normal and mislocalization (referral of stimulation-induced sensation to a phantom limb) was absent in the congenital amputees. The role of peripheral and central factors in the understanding of phantom limb pain and phantom limb phenomena is discussed in view of these findings.
Possibilities and limitations of magnetic source imaging of methohexital-induced epileptiform patterns in temporal lobe epilepsy patients
1997, Brockhaus, Anke, Lehnertz, Klaus, Wienbruch, Christian, Kowalik, Zbigniew J., Burr, Wieland, Elbert, Thomas, Hoke, M., Elger, Christian E.
The usefulness of MEG-based techniques in lateralizing and localizing the epileptogenic area was investigated in the present study. Spontaneous and methohexital-induced spikes were studied in a group of 15 patients with temporomesial epilepsy using a 37-channel neuromagnetometer. The accuracy of the magnetic source imaging was compared to the results of electrocorticographic (ECoG) recordings. Differences of drug-induced spike densities in the MEG recordings between both sides confirmed a similar lateralizing power of the MEG and ECoG recordings. Source location analyses based on a moving dipole model resp. a rotating dipole model were performed using a spherical head model. After subdivision of the volume of each patient's head, 8 qcm cubicles containing at least 3 source locations were projected onto the individual MRI scan and resulted in source locations within or close to the presurgically defined primary epileptogenic area only in 3 of the 15 patients. Spike induction by methohexital has the advantage of shortening the recording period as compared to recordings of interictal epileptiform discharges. However, the correlation analyses of spike densities from MEG and ECoG recordings and the source location analyses from MEG recordings indicate that spikes generated in deep temporomesial structures may escape the MEG registration.
Increased Cortical Representation of the Fingers of the Left Hand in String Players
1995, Elbert, Thomas, Pantev, Christo, Wienbruch, Christian, Rockstroh, Brigitte, Taub, Edward
Magnetic source imaging revealed that the cortical representation of the digits of the left hand of string players was larger than that in controls. The effect was smallest for the left thumb, and no such differences were observed for the representations of the right hand digits. The amount of cortical reorganization in the representation of the fingering digits was correlated with the age at which the person had begun to play. These results suggest that the representation of different parts of the body in the primary somatosensory cortex of humans depends on use and changes to conform to the current needs and experiences of the individual.
Combined EEG and MEG recordings of visual 40 Hz responses to illusory triangles in human
1997-03-24, Tallon-Baudry, Catherine, Bertrand, Olivier, Wienbruch, Christian, Ross, Bernhard, Pantev, Christo
EEG and MEG were simultaneously recorded to study the visual gamma-band (30-70 Hz) responses. The electrical gamma-band response phase-locked to stimulus onset can be subdivided into a central component at 39 Hz and an occipital component at 36 Hz. A new high-frequency magnetic phase-locked response recorded over the occipital lobe is described. Its topography is complex and probably reflects the activity of multiple sources. Both electrical and magnetic high-frequency responses differ in topography from the low-frequency responses in the same latency range, suggesting that at least partially distinct sources are involved. The existence of a non-phase-locked 40 Hz component around 280 ms is confirmed in EEG data but is not detectable in MEG data.
Methohexital-Induced Changes in Spectral Power of Neuromagnetic Signals : Beta Augmentation is Smaller Over the Hemisphere Containing the Epileptogenic Focus
1997, Wienbruch, Christian, Eulitz, Carsten, Lehnertz, Klaus, Brockhaus, Anke, Elger, Christian E., Elbert, Thomas, Hoke, Manfried
Previous research has suggested that methohexital, a short-term barbiturate, alters activity in the primary epileptogenic area. It can be assumed that drug-induced activation of the epileptogenic focus provides a rapid and safe method to obtain a sufficient amount of information relevant for the lateralization and localisation of the primary epileptogenic area. This study shows that methohexital changes spectral power in the beta band derived from magnetoencephalographic (MEG) signals over the hemisphere ipsilateral to the primary epileptogenic area. This effect was demonstrated for 10/13 of the investigated patients suffering from unilateral temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE). The side and location of the primary epileptogenic area of these patients (5 left TLE, 8 right TLE) was determined invasively during presurgical evaluation. During a 1-2 minute interval after intravenous bolus injection of 100 mg methohexital a clear lateralization effect in the beta band was observed, which differed maginally between fronto-central, fronto-temporal and temporo-parietal brain regions. Analyses of simultaneously recorded scalp electroencephalographic (EEG) data revealed effects consistent with those of the MEG anasysis. The reduced enhancement of beta band spectral power of MEG recordings provides a potential application for the non-invasive lateralization of the primary epileptogenic area.
Phantom-limb pain as a perceptual correlate of cortical reorganization following arm amputation
1995, Flor, Herta, Elbert, Thomas, Knecht, Stefan, Wienbruch, Christian, Pantev, Christo, Birbaumer, Niels, Larbig, Wolfgang, Taub, Edward
Although phantom-limb pain is a frequent consequence of the amputation of an extremity, little is known about its origin1-4. On the basis of the demonstration of substantial plasticity of the somatosensory cortex after amputation5 or somatosensory deafferentation in adult monkeys6, it has been suggested that cortical reorganization could account for some non-painful phantom-limb phenomena in amputees and that cortical reorganization has an adaptive (that is, pain-preventing) function2,5,7,8. Theoretical and empirical work on chronic back pain9,10 has revealed a positive relationship between the amount of cortical alteration and the magnitude of pain, so we predicted that cortical reorganization and phantom-limb pain should be positively related. Using non-invasive neuromagnetic imaging techniques to determine cortical reorganization in humans11-13, we report a very strong direct relationship (r = 0.93) between the amount of cortical reorganization and the magnitude of phantom limb pain (but not non-painful phantom phenomena) experienced after arm amputation. These data indicate that phantom-limb pain is related to, and may be a consequence of, plastic changes in primary somatosensory cortex.
Input-increase and input-decrease types of cortical reorganization after upper extremity amputation in humans
1997, Elbert, Thomas, Sterr, Annette, Flor, Herta, Rockstroh, Brigitte, Knecht, Stefan, Pantev, Christo, Wienbruch, Christian, Taub, Edward
A plastic remodeling of regions in somatosensory cortex has previously been observed to occur in separate experimental paradigms in response to loss of somatosensory input and to increase in input. In this study, both types of cortical reorganization have been observed to occur concurrently in the same adult human nervous system as a result of a single intervention. Following upper extremity amputation, magnetic source imaging revealed that tactile stimulation of the lip evoked responses not only in the area of the somatosensory cortex corresponding to the face, but also within the cortical region that would normally correspond to the now absent hand. This "invasion" of the cortical amputation zone was accompanied by a significant increase in the size of the representation of the digits of the intact hand, presumably as a result of an increased importance of sensory stimulation consequent to increased dependence on that hand imposed by the loss of the contralateral extremity.
Tonotopic organization of the sources of human auditory steady-state responses
1996, Pantev, Christo, Roberts, Larry E., Elbert, Thomas, Ross, Bernhard, Wienbruch, Christian
Steady-state responses (SSRs) or steady-state fields (SSFs) show maximum amplitude when tone pulses are presented at repetition rates near 40 Hz. This result has led to the hypothesis that the SSR/SSF consists of superimposed transient 'middle latency' responses which display wave periods near 40 Hz and summate with one another when phase locked by 40 Hz steady-state stimulation. We evaluated this hypothesis by comparing the cortical sources of the 40 Hz auditory SSF with sources of the middle latency Pa wave which is prominent in electrical and magnetic recordings, and with the cortical sources of the familiar N1 wave, at different carrier frequencies between 250 and 4000 Hz. SSF sources determined for the different carrier frequencies were found to display a 'medial' tendency tonotopy resembling that of the N1m (sources for the higher frequencies represented more deeply within the supratemporal sulcus), opposite the 'lateral' tendency tonotopy of the middle latency Pam (sources for the higher frequencies situated more laterally). A medial SSF tonotopy was observed in each of the subjects investigated, including three subjects for whom Pam and N1m maps were also available. These findings suggest that the 40 Hz SSF may not consist of summated or entrained middle latency responses, as has previously been proposed. Alternative mechanisms for the SSR are discussed.
Neuromagnetic Source Analysis Using Magnetic Resonance Images for the Construction of Source and Volume Conductor Model
1995, Lütkenhöner, Bernd, Menninghaus, Elisabeth, Steinsträter, Olaf, Wienbruch, Christian, Gißler, Hans Martin, Elbert, Thomas
Sources of the somatosensory evoked fields (SEF) for one subject were estimated using constraints from the magnetic resonance images (MRI) of the same subject. A realistic volume conductor model was shaped corresponding to the inside of the skull. Sources were restricted to a dipole patch riding on the surface of the cortex, reconstructed from the individual MRI. Such a patch can be considered as a uniformly activated cortical area giving rise to distributed currents which flow perpendicular to the cortical surface. Source locations obtained for the SEF in response to separate stimulations of lower lip, first and fifth digit, and collarbone followed the course of the contralateral central sulcus. The order of the estimated source locations was in agreement with the somatosensory homunculus of Penfield and Rasmussen. Similar results were obtained with the simple model of a current dipole in a homogeneous sphere. In contrast, combining a current dipole model with a realistic volume conductor model was rather problematic as it overestimates the radial dipole component by an order of magnitude.