Event-related beta desynchronization indicates timing of response selection in a delayed-response paradigm in humans

Neurosci Lett. 2001 Oct 26;312(3):149-52. doi: 10.1016/s0304-3940(01)02217-0.


Voluntary movements are preceded by event-related desynchronization (ERD) of alpha and beta activity. The present study used magnetoencephalography to investigate the relationship between motor preparation and the time course of beta ERD in a delayed response paradigm. Depending on the task, the required response (left or right finger lifting) was cued either spatially by the lateralization of a sound at trial onset, or verbally by the content of a midline auditory event. Beta ERD appeared over sensorimotor regions contralaterally to the response side about 200 ms earlier for the spatial than the verbal cue task. This suggests a close relationship between the latency of beta ERD onset and the duration of cognitive processes involved in selecting a motor response.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acoustic Stimulation
  • Adult
  • Auditory Perception / physiology
  • Cognition / physiology*
  • Cortical Synchronization*
  • Cues
  • Evoked Potentials / physiology*
  • Female
  • Functional Laterality / physiology
  • Humans
  • Magnetoencephalography
  • Male
  • Motor Cortex / anatomy & histology
  • Motor Cortex / physiology*
  • Movement / physiology*
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Psychomotor Performance / physiology*
  • Reaction Time / physiology*
  • Verbal Behavior / physiology