Although the occurrence of concomitant positive BOLD responses (PBRs) and negative BOLD responses (NBRs) to visual stimuli is increasingly investigated in neuroscience, it still lacks a definite explanation. Multimodal imaging represents a powerful tool to study the determinants of negative BOLD responses: the integration of functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) and electroencephalographic (EEG) recordings is especially useful, since it can give information on the neurovascular coupling underlying this complex phenomenon. In the present study, the brain response to intermittent photic stimulation (IPS) was investigated in a group of healthy subjects using simultaneous EEG-fMRI, with the main objective to study the electrophysiological mechanisms associated with the intense NBRs elicited by IPS in extra-striate visual cortex. The EEG analysis showed that IPS induced a desynchronization of the basal rhythm, followed by the instauration of a novel rhythm driven by the visual stimulation. The most interesting results emerged from the EEG-informed fMRI analysis, which suggested a relationship between the neuronal rhythms at 10 and 12 Hz and the BOLD dynamics in extra-striate visual cortex. These findings support the hypothesis that NBRs to visual stimuli may be neuronal in origin rather than reflecting pure vascular phenomena.
- Negative BOLD
- Visual stimulation
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
- Radiological and Ultrasound Technology