Thesis defense Roemer van der Meij (Donders Series 183)
2 June 2015
Promotor: Dr. M. Ullsperger, copromotor: De. E. Maris
On the identification, characterization and investigation of phase dependent coupling in neuronal networks
In our constantly changing environment, our brain needs to be able to flexibly and quickly route information through its neuronal networks. This requires connections to be rapidly formed and dissolved between populations of neurons that need to interact. The brain’s anatomical connections however, cannot change at this required speed. Connections formed by the coupling of oscillatory neuronal activity on the other hand, can change at the necessary time scales. Moreover, this coupling is likely to be implicated in the effective communication between populations. As such, the coupling of neuronal oscillations could be the key building block for the routing of information through the brain. This thesis concerns the identification, characterization and investigation of neuronal networks formed by the coupling of neuronal oscillations. In this thesis new decomposition techniques are presented and used that are capable of uncovering these networks from electrophysiological data, and that allow for analyses of their properties. With these techniques, we can overcome the tremendous challenge of revealing these networks in the absence of a priori hypotheses on their location and the involved frequencies.