Neuronal generators of the visual evoked potentials: intracerebral recording in awake humans

A. Ducati, E. Fava, E. D F Motti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Flash and pattern reversal visual evoked potentials were recorded in awake patients undergoing stereotactic procedures for severe dyskinetic disorders resistant to medical treatment. The nucleus ventralis lateralis thalami was reached via an occipital approach. VEPs were recorded on the scalp at the entracce of the intracerebral electrode, and serially from sites at different depths. A polarity reversal of the surface recorded wave form took place as the intracerebral electrode was advanced beneath the surface cortical layers. As concerns F-VEPs, most of the scalp activity mirrored the potentials recorded down to the depth of 70-65 mm from the thalamus. The largest amplitude of intracerebral F-VEPs was obtained from recording sites at 50-70 mm from the thalamus, i.e., in the depth of the calcarine fissure. A negative wave, peaking around 47-50 msec, became evident in recording sites at 30-40 mm from the thalamus but vanished as the electrode was advanced farther. In only one patient could we record a small negative wave, peaking at 33 msec, in the vicinity of the corpus geniculatum externum. Furthermore, the oscillatory activity recorded from the scalp appeared to be generated in the cortical layers. PR-VEPs also underwent polarity reversal as the electrode traversed the cortex. PR-VEPs disappeared more superficially than F-VEPs. No PR-evoked activity could be recorded in the vicinity of the corpus geniculatum externum. We conclude that slow and fast components of VEPs recorded from the scalp are entirely generated in cortical layers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)89-99
Number of pages11
JournalElectroencephalography and Clinical Neurophysiology - Evoked Potentials
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1988


  • Generator
  • Intracerebral recording
  • Man
  • Visual evoked potential

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Neuroscience(all)


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