Calibrating rhythmic stimulation parameters to individual electroencephalography markers: the consistency of individual alpha frequency in practical lab settings

Shanice E W Janssens, Alexander T Sack, Sanne Ten Oever, Tom A de Graaf*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

4 Citations (Web of Science)

Abstract

Rhythmic stimulation can be applied to modulate neuronal oscillations. Such 'entrainment' is optimized when stimulation frequency is individually-calibrated based on magneto/encephalography markers. It remains unknown how consistent such individual markers are across days/sessions, within a session, or across cognitive states, hemispheres, and estimation methods, especially in a realistic, practical, lab setting. We here estimated individual alpha frequency (IAF) repeatedly from short EEG measurements at rest or during an attention task (cognitive state), using single parieto-occipital electrodes in 24 participants on four days (between-sessions), with multiple measurements over an hour on one day (within-session). First, we introduce an algorithm to automatically reject power spectra without a sufficiently clear peak to ensure unbiased IAF estimations. Then we estimated IAF via the traditional 'maximum' method and a 'Gaussian fit' method. IAF was reliable within- and between-sessions for both cognitive states and hemispheres, though task-IAF estimates tended to be more variable. Overall, the 'Gaussian fit' method was more reliable than the 'maximum' method. Furthermore, we evaluated how far from an approximated 'true' task-related IAF the selected 'stimulation frequency' was, when calibrating this frequency based on a short rest-EEG, a short task-EEG, or simply selecting 10Hertz for all participants. For the 'maximum' method, rest-EEG calibration was best, followed by task-EEG, and then 10 Hertz. For the 'Gaussian fit' method, rest-EEG and task-EEG-based calibration were similarly accurate, and better than 10 Hertz. These results lead to concrete recommendations about valid, and automated, estimation of individual oscillation markers in experimental and clinical settings.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3418-3437
Number of pages20
JournalEuropean Journal of Neuroscience
Volume55
Issue number11-12
Early online date7 Aug 2021
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2022

Keywords

  • ALTERNATING-CURRENT STIMULATION
  • BACKGROUND EEG
  • BETA OSCILLATIONS
  • EEG-ALPHA
  • INTERINDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES
  • INTRAINDIVIDUAL VARIABILITY
  • LOCAL ENTRAINMENT
  • PEAK FREQUENCY
  • TEST-RETEST RELIABILITY
  • TRANSCRANIAL MAGNETIC STIMULATION
  • consistency
  • electroencephalography (EEG)
  • individual alpha frequency (IAF)
  • intra-class correlation coefficient (ICC)
  • neuronal oscillations
  • reliability

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