Date of Award

Spring 2015

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Biomedical Engineering - (Ph.D.)

Department

Biomedical Engineering

First Advisor

Mesut Sahin

Second Advisor

Kevin Pang

Third Advisor

Antje Ihlefeld

Fourth Advisor

Sergei Adamovich

Fifth Advisor

Vijayalakshmi Santhakumar

Abstract

The cerebellum plays a crucial role in motor coordination along with basal ganglia and the motor areas of the cerebral cortex. Both somatosensory and the cerebro-cerebral pathways bring in massive amounts of neural information to the cerebellum. The output of the cerebellar cortex projects to various motor cortices as well as down to the spinal cord to make its contributions to the motor function.

The origin and function of the field potential oscillations in the cerebellum, especially in the high frequencies, have not been explored sufficiently. The primary objective of this study was to investigate the spatio-temporal characteristics of high frequency field potentials (150-350Hz) in the cerebellar cortex in a behavioral context. To this end, the paramedian lobule in rats was recorded using micro electro-corticogram (µ-ECoG) electrode arrays while the animal performed a lever press task using the forelimb. The phase synchrony analysis shows that the high frequency oscillations recorded at multiple points across the paramedian cortex episodically synchronize immediately before and desynchronize during the lever press. The electrode contacts were grouped according to their temporal course of phase synchrony around the time of lever press. Contact groups presented patches with slightly stronger synchrony values in the medio-lateral direction, and did not appear to form parasagittal zones. Spatiotemporal synchrony of high frequency field potentials has not been reported at such large-scales previously in the cerebellar cortex.

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