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| Home > Departments > Center for Experimental Medicine > Department of Neurophysiology and Pathophysiology > EEG

Research Group:

Electroencephalography



 
 




[Head of Group:]

Daniel Senkowski, Ph.D.


[Group Members:]

Dipl.Psych. Marion Höfle
Doctoral candidate

Cand.Psych. Inga Fitzner
Student Assistant

Cand.Psych. Janine Kautz
MSc Student

Cand.med. Frithjof Tandler
PhD Student

Kriemhild Saha
Technical Assistant

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[Equipment / Methods:]

  • State of the art high-density EEG recording facility (up to 128 channel)
  • Polhemus 3D digitizer (electro-magnetic based recording system)
  • Sensory stimulation (laser and intracutan)
  • Eye tracking
  • Analysis software: Besa, EEProbe, NeuroScan, eeglab, Curry
Signal Processing:
  • Wavelet transform
  • Dipole and current source density analysis
  • Beamforming
  • Independent and principal component analysis
  • Auto-regressive modelling

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[Research Topics:]

  • Oscillatory responses
  • Multisensory processing
  • Selective attention
  • Pain processing


[Oscillatory Responses:]

Clocks tick, bridges and skyscrapers vibrate, neuronal networks oscillate. Are neuronal oscillations an inevitable by-product, similar to bridge vibrations, or an essential part of the brain's design? (Buzsaki & Draghun, Science, 2004).

Research in our laboratory focus on the role of oscillatory responses in cognitive processes. One particular research question is whether the amplitudes and phases of oscillatory responses in the high-frequency beta (13-30) and gamma ranges (30-80 Hz) predict behavioral performance such as response speed and accuracy. We use wavelet transform, beamforming, and other analysis algorithms to study the dynamics and anatomical structures related to oscillatory responses.


[Multisensory Processing:]

Traditionally, integrative multisensory processing was thought to occur exclusively at higher order cortical convergence zones, while processing within lower-level sensory cortices was considered to be specific to a single modality. Recent electrophysiological and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies, however, have demonstrated that inputs from multiple sensory modalities can be integrated at the earliest stages of cortical processing, in regions that were originally thought to be modality specific.

Studies in our laboratory focus on short (sensory) and longer latency (cognitive) multisensory processing and the role of oscillatory responses in multisensory integration. One research focus is the examination of integrative multisensory processing using naturalistic stimulation (i.e., multisensory speech and multisensory objects).


[Selective Attention:]

One of the key functions of selective attention is to enhance perceptual clarity and reduce stimulus ambiguity. Early selection theories predict that our brains are able to amplify relevant information and suppress irrelevant information at early stages of information processing. This amplification and suppression of early sensory processing is a mechanism by which we can direct attention to a specific feature (e.g., form or color) of a stimulus. Recent findings have suggested a link between oscillatory responses, attention and multisensory processing.

Research in our laboratory focus on different aspects of attention including intra- and intermodal attention and the possible role of oscillatory responses in such processes.


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[Pain Processing:]

The broad goal of our research is to better understand the CNS pathways and mechanisms mediating pain and pain modulation in normal and pathologic states. Current research is focused on imaging changes in oscillatory activity. The dynamics and plasticity of this brain network can be studied by systematically altering somatic stimulation parameters or by observing the effects of drugs or attentional manipulations. Spatial and temporal changes in the network pattern are correlated with human psychophysical behavior to determine their functional significance.

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[Collaborations:]

  • Prof. Dr. John J. Foxe, Nathan Kline Institute for Psychiatric Research, New York
  • Prof. Dr. Marty G. Woldorff, Duke University
  • Prof. Dr. Christoph S. Herrmann, University Magdeburg
  • Dr. Stefan Debener, MRC Institute of Hearing Research, Southampton
  • Dr. Dave Saint-Amour, Centre de recherché, University Montreal
  • Dr. Durk Talsma, Free University Amsterdam
  • Dr. Jürgen Gallinat, Charite Berlin
  • Dr. Tomas Gruber, University Leipzig

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last update: Eckehard Scharein, 09.10.2008