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Alpha oscillatory activity causally linked to working memory retention: insights from online phase-locking closed-loop transcranial alternating current stimulation (tACS)

Chen, Xueli and Ma, Ru and Zhang, Wei and Wu, Qianying and Yimiti, Ajiguli and Xia, Xinzhao and Cui, Jiangtian and Zeng, Ginger Qinghong and Bu, Junjie and Chen, Qi and Yu, Nancy Xiaonan and Wang, Shouyan and Deng, Zhi-De and Sack, Alexander T. and Mc Laughlin, Myles and Zhang, Xiaochu (2021) Alpha oscillatory activity causally linked to working memory retention: insights from online phase-locking closed-loop transcranial alternating current stimulation (tACS). . (Unpublished) https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20210525-142956254

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Abstract

Although previous studies have reported correlations between alpha oscillations and the “retention” sub-process of working memory (WM), no direct causal evidence has been established in human neuroscience. Here, we developed an online phase-locking closed-loop transcranial alternating current stimulation (tACS) system capable of precisely controlling the phase difference between tACS and concurrent endogenous oscillations. This system permits both up- and down-regulation of brain oscillations at the target stimulation frequency, and is here applied to empirically demonstrate that parietal alpha oscillations causally relate to WM retention. Our experimental design included both in-phase and anti-phase alpha-tACS applied to 39 participants during the retention intervals of a modified Sternberg paradigm. Compared to in-phase alpha-tACS, anti-phase alpha-tACS decreased both WM performance and alpha activity. Moreover, the in-phase tACS-induced changes in WM performance were positively correlated with alpha oscillatory activity. These findings strongly support a causal link between alpha oscillations and WM retention, and illustrate the broad application prospects of phase-locking tACS.


Item Type:Report or Paper (Discussion Paper)
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
https://doi.org/10.1101/2021.05.23.445322DOIDiscussion Paper
ORCID:
AuthorORCID
Deng, Zhi-De0000-0001-8925-0871
Additional Information:The copyright holder for this preprint is the author/funder, who has granted bioRxiv a license to display the preprint in perpetuity. This version posted May 23, 2021. We thank Lizhuang Yang, Guanbao Cui, Xianze Zheng, Zhen Miao, Kaining Zhang and Zehua Fang for their assistance with experimental design. This work was supported by grants from The National Key Basic Research Program (2018YFC0831101), The National Natural Science Foundation of China (31771221, 71942003, 61773360, 31800927, 31900766 and 71874170), Major Project of Philosophy and Social Science Research, Ministry of Education of China (19JZD010), CAS-VPST Silk Road Science Fund 2021 (GLHZ202128), Collaborative Innovation Program of Hefei Science Center, CAS (2020HSC-CIP001). A portion of the numerical calculations in this study were performed with the supercomputing system at the Supercomputing Centre of USTC. Author contributions: X.Z. conceived the experiments; X.C., R.M., Q.W., and A.Y. performed the experiments; X.C., R.M., and W.Z. analyzed the data; R.M., X.X., and J.C. designed and realized the online phase-locking closed-loop tACS system; X.C., R.M., and X.Z. wrote the manuscript; A.T.S., M.M.L., N.X.Y, S.W., Z.D., Q.Z., and J.B. helped to polish the writing. The authors declare that they have no competing interests. Data and materials availability: The original data that support the findings of this study and the custom code used to generate the figures and statistics are available from the corresponding author (X.Z.) upon reasonable request. Materials & Correspondence: Correspondence and requests for materials should be addressed to X.Z.
Funders:
Funding AgencyGrant Number
National Key Basic Research Program of China2018YFC0831101
National Natural Science Foundation of China31771221
National Natural Science Foundation of China71942003
National Natural Science Foundation of China61773360
National Natural Science Foundation of China31800927
National Natural Science Foundation of China31900766
National Natural Science Foundation of China71874170
Ministry of Education (Taipei)19JZD010
Chinese Academy of SciencesGLHZ202128
Chinese Academy of Sciences2020HSC-CIP001
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20210525-142956254
Persistent URL:https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20210525-142956254
Official Citation:Alpha oscillatory activity causally linked to working memory retention: insights from online phase-locking closed-loop transcranial alternating current stimulation (tACS). Xueli Chen, Ru Ma, Wei Zhang, Qianying Wu, Ajiguli Yimiti, Xinzhao Xia, Jiangtian Cui, Ginger Qinghong Zeng, Junjie Bu, Qi Chen, Nancy Xiaonan Yu, Shouyan Wang, Zhi-De Deng, Alexander T. Sack, Myles Mc Laughlin, Xiaochu Zhang. bioRxiv 2021.05.23.445322; doi: https://doi.org/10.1101/2021.05.23.445322
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:109250
Collection:CaltechAUTHORS
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:26 May 2021 16:42
Last Modified:26 May 2021 16:42

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