Impaired frontal synchronization of spontaneous magnetoencephalographic activity in patients with bipolar disorder

Shyan Shiou Chen, Pei Chi Tu, Tung Ping Su, Jen Chuen Hsieh, Ying Chia Lin, Li Fen Chen*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Citations (Scopus)


Recent functional imaging studies demonstrated that brain exhibit coherent, synchronized activities during resting state and the dynamics may be impaired in various psychiatric illnesses. In order to investigate the change of neural dynamics in bipolar disorder, we used a new nonlinear measurement "similarity index" to analyze the magnetoencephalography (MEG) recordings and test the hypothesis that there are synchronization changes within different frequency bands in the frontal cortex of patients with bipolar disorder. Ten patients with bipolar I disorder during euthymic phase and ten normal controls underwent 2 min eye-closed resting recording with a whole-head 306-channel MEG system. Eleven channels of MEG data from frontal area were selected for analysis. Synchronization level in the delta (2-4 Hz), theta (4-8 Hz), alpha (8-12 Hz) and beta (12-24 Hz) bands was calculated for each subject and compared across group. The results showed that significant dynamic changes in bipolar patients can be characterized by increased synchronization of slow frequency oscillations (delta) and decreased synchronization of fast frequency oscillations (beta). Furthermore, the positive correlation between beta synchronization level and preservative errors in Wisconcin card sorting task was found which would implicate the deficit of executive function in bipolar patients. Our findings indicate that analysis of spontaneous MEG recordings at resting state using nonlinear dynamic approaches may disclose the subtle regional changes of neural dynamics in BD.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)174-178
Number of pages5
JournalNeuroscience Letters
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2008 Nov 14


  • Bipolar disorders
  • Magnetoencephalography
  • Nonlinear dynamics
  • Similarity index
  • Synchronization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience


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