On-going electroencephalographic rhythms related to cortical arousal in wild-type mice: the effect of aging

Claudio Del Percio, Wilhelmus Drinkenburg, Susanna Lopez, Francesco Infarinato, Jesper Frank Bastlund, Bettina Laursen, Jan T. Pedersen, Ditte Zerlang Christensen, Gianluigi Forloni, Angelisa Frasca, Francesco M. Noè, Marina Bentivoglio, Paolo Francesco Fabene, Giuseppe Bertini, Valeria Colavito, Jonathan Kelley, Sophie Dix, Jill C. Richardson, Claudio Babiloni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Resting state electroencephalographic (EEG) rhythms reflect the fluctuation of cortical arousal and vigilance in a typical clinical setting, namely the EEG recording for few minutes with eyes closed (i.e., passive condition) and eyes open (i.e., active condition). Can this procedure be back-translated to C57 (wild type) mice for aging studies? On-going EEG rhythms were recorded from a frontoparietal bipolar channel in 85 (19 females) C57 mice. Male mice were subdivided into 3 groups: 25 young (4.5–6 months), 18 middle-aged (12–15 months), and 23 old (20–24 months) mice to test the effect of aging. EEG power density was compared between short periods (about 5 minutes) of awake quiet behavior (passive) and dynamic exploration of the cage (active). Compared with the passive condition, the active condition induced decreased EEG power at 1–2 Hz and increased EEG power at 6–10 Hz in the group of 85 mice. Concerning the aging effects, the passive condition showed higher EEG power at 1–2 Hz in the old group than that in the others. Furthermore, the active condition exhibited a maximum EEG power at 6–8 Hz in the former group and 8–10 Hz in the latter. In the present conditions, delta and theta EEG rhythms reflected changes in cortical arousal and vigilance in freely behaving C57 mice across aging. These changes resemble the so-called slowing of resting state EEG rhythms observed in humans across physiological and pathological aging. The present EEG procedures may be used to enhance preclinical phases of drug discovery in mice for understanding the neurophysiological effects of new compounds against brain aging.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)20-30
Number of pages11
JournalNeurobiology of Aging
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2017


  • Awake active state
  • Awake passive state
  • C57 wild-type (WT) mice
  • Electroencephalographic (EEG) rhythms

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Ageing
  • Developmental Biology
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology
  • Clinical Neurology


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