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Publication Detail
Frequency specific modulation of human somatosensory cortex
  • Publication Type:
    Journal article
  • Publication Sub Type:
    Article
  • Authors:
    Feurra M, Paulus W, Walsh V, Kanai R
  • Publication date:
    02/2011
  • Journal:
    Frontiers in Psychology
  • Volume:
    2
  • Article number:
    13
  • Status:
    Published
  • Print ISSN:
    1664-1078
  • Notes:
    Copyright: © 2011 Feurra, Paulus, Walsh and Kanai. This is an open-access article subject to an exclusive license agreement between the authors and Frontiers Media SA, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original authors and source are credited.
Abstract
Oscillatory neuronal activities are commonly observed in response to sensory stimulation. However, their functional roles are still the subject of debate. One way to probe the roles of oscillatory neural activities is to deliver alternating current to the cortex at biologically relevant frequencies and examine whether such stimulation influences perception and cognition. In this study, we tested whether transcranial alternating current stimulation (tACS) over the primary somatosensory cortex (SI) could elicit tactile sensations in humans in a frequency dependent manner. We tested the effectiveness of tACS over SI at frequency bands ranging from 2 to 70 Hz. Our results show that stimulation in alpha (10-14 Hz) and high gamma (52-70 Hz) frequency range produces a tactile sensation in the contralateral hand. A weaker effect was also observed for beta (16-20 Hz) stimulation. These findings highlight the frequency-dependency of effective tACS over SI with the effective frequencies corresponding to those observed in previous EEG/MEG studies of tactile perception. Our present study suggests that tACS could be used as a powerful online stimulation technique to reveal the causal roles of oscillatory brain activities.
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