Cortical sources of resting state electroencephalographic rhythms probe brain function in naïve HIV individuals

Claudio Babiloni, Giuseppe Noce, Alfredo Pennica, Paolo Onorati, Paolo Capotosto, Claudio Del Percio, Paolo Roma, Valentina Correr, Elisa Piccinni, Ginevra Toma, Andrea Soricelli, Francesco Di Campli, Laura Gianserra, Lorenzo Ciullini, Antonio Aceti, Elisabetta Teti, Loredana Sarmati, Gloria Crocetti, Raffaele Ferri, Valentina CataniaMaria Teresa Pascarelli, Massimo Andreoni, Stefano Ferracuti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective Here we evaluated the hypothesis that resting state electroencephalographic (EEG) cortical sources correlated with cognitive functions and discriminated asymptomatic treatment-naïve HIV subjects (no AIDS). Methods EEG, clinical, and neuropsychological data were collected in 103 treatment-naïve HIV subjects (88 males; mean age 39.8 years ± 1.1 standard error of the mean, SE). An age-matched group of 70 cognitively normal and HIV-negative (Healthy; 56 males; 39.0 years ± 2.0 SE) subjects, selected from a local university archive, was used for control purposes. LORETA freeware was used for EEG source estimation in fronto-central, temporal, and parieto-occipital regions of interest. Results Widespread sources of delta (<4 Hz) and alpha (8–12 Hz) rhythms were abnormal in the treatment-naïve HIV group. Fronto-central delta source activity showed a slight but significant (p < 0.05, corrected) negative correlation with verbal and semantic test scores. So did parieto-occipital delta/alpha source ratio with memory and composite cognitive scores. These sources allowed a moderate classification accuracy between HIV and control individuals (area under the ROC curves of 70–75%). Conclusions Regional EEG abnormalities in quiet wakefulness characterized treatment-naïve HIV subjects at the individual level. Significance This EEG approach may contribute to the management of treatment-naïve HIV subjects at risk of cognitive deficits.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)431-441
Number of pages11
JournalClinical Neurophysiology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 1 2018


  • Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)
  • Low-resolution brain electromagnetic source tomography (LORETA)
  • Neuropsychological assessment
  • Resting-state electroencephalography (EEG)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sensory Systems
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Physiology (medical)


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