Is synchronized neuronal gamma activity relevant for selective attention?
SourceBrain Research Reviews, 42, 3, (2003), pp. 265-72
Article / Letter to editor
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Brain Research Reviews
SubjectUMCN 3.2: Cognitive neurosciences
Today, much evidence exists that sensory feature binding is accomplished by phase synchronization of induced neuronal gamma activity (30-80 Hz). Recent studies furthermore suggest that phase synchronization of induced gamma activity may represent a general mechanism enabling transient associations of neural assemblies and thus may play a central role in cortical information processing. Here, we describe findings indicating that synchronized gamma activity is moreover specifically involved in selective attention. While feature binding appears to depend primarily on induced gamma synchronization, attentional processes seem to involve both induced and evoked gamma oscillations. Yet it is still an open question, as to which top-down and bottom-up processes are associated with attentional modulation of gamma activity. A possible mechanism to project influences from attentional control structures to areas concerned with stimulus representation and vice versa, may be neuronal synchronization and the resulting firing rate changes of coincidence-detecting neurons in target areas.
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