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  Cross-frequency phase-amplitude coupling in repetitive movements in patients with Parkinson’s disease

Gong, R., Mühlberg, C., Wegscheider, M., Fricke, C., Rumpf, J.-J., Knösche, T. R., et al. (2021). Cross-frequency phase-amplitude coupling in repetitive movements in patients with Parkinson’s disease. medRxiv. doi:10.1101/2021.07.26.21261085.

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Gong, Ruxue1, Author           
Mühlberg, Christoph2, Author           
Wegscheider, Mirko, Author
Fricke, Christopher, Author
Rumpf, Jost-Julian, Author
Knösche, Thomas R.1, Author                 
Classen, Joseph, Author
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1Methods and Development Group Brain Networks, MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society, ou_2205650              
2Department Neurology, MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society, ou_634549              

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 Abstract: Bradykinesia is a cardinal motor symptom in Parkinson’s disease whose pathophysiology is incompletely understood. When signals are recorded from the cortex or scalp at rest, affected patients display enhanced phase-amplitude coupling between β (13-30Hz) and broadband γ (50-150Hz) oscillatory activities. However, it remains unclear whether and how abnormal phase-amplitude coupling is involved in slowing Parkinsonian movements during their execution. To address these questions, we analyzed high-density EEG signals recorded simultaneously with various motor activities and at rest in 19 patients with Parkinson’s disease and 20 healthy controls. The motor tasks consisted of repetitive index finger pressing, and slow and fast tapping movements. Individual EEG source signals were computed for the premotor cortex, primary motor cortex, primary somatosensory cortex, and primary somatosensory complex. For the resting condition and the pressing task, phase-amplitude coupling averaged over the 4 motor regions and the entire movement period was larger in patients than in controls. In contrast, in all tapping tasks, state-related phase-amplitude coupling was similar between patients and controls. These findings were not aligned with motor performance and EMG data, which showed abnormalities in patients for tapping but not for pressing, suggesting that the strength of β-broadband γ phase-amplitude coupling during the movement period does not directly relate to Parkinsonian bradykinesia. Subsequently, we examined the dynamics of oscillatory EEG signals during motor transitions. When healthy controls performed the pressing task, dynamic phase-amplitude coupling increased shortly before pressing onset and decreased subsequently. A strikingly similar motif of coupling rise and decay was observed around the offset of pressing and around the onset of slow tapping, suggesting that such transient phase-amplitude coupling changes may be linked to transitions between different movement states – akin to preparatory states in dynamical systems theory of motor control. In patients, the modulation of phase-amplitude coupling was similar in (normally executed) pressing, but flattened in slow (abnormally executed) tapping compared to the controls. These deviations in phase-amplitude coupling around motor action transients may indicate dysfunctional evolution of neuronal population dynamics from the preparatory state to movement generation in Parkinson’s disease. These findings may indicate that cross-frequency coupling is involved in the pathophysiology of bradykinesia in Parkinson’s disease through its abnormal dynamic modulation.

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Language(s): eng - English
 Dates: 2021-07-29
 Publication Status: Published online
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 Identifiers: DOI: 10.1101/2021.07.26.21261085
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Title: medRxiv
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