Synchronous gamma activity: a review and contribution to an integrative neuroscience model of schizophrenia

Brain Res Brain Res Rev. 2003 Jan;41(1):57-78. doi: 10.1016/s0165-0173(02)00220-5.


Synchronous high frequency (Gamma band) activity has been proposed as a candidate mechanism for the integration or 'binding' of distributed brain activities. Since the first descriptions of schizophrenia, attempts to characterize this disorder have focused on disturbances in such integrative processing. Here, we review both micro- and macroscopic neuroscience research into Gamma synchrony, and its application to understanding schizophrenia. The review encompasses evidence from both animal and human studies for the functional significance of Gamma activity, the association between Gamma dysfunction and information processing disturbances, and the relevance of specific Gamma dysfunctions to the integration and extension of previous disconnection models of schizophrenia. Attention is given to the relationship between Gamma activity and the heterogeneous symptoms of schizophrenia. Existing studies show that measures of Gamma activity have the potential to explain far more of the variance in schizophrenia performance than previous neurophysiological measures. It is concluded that measures of Gamma synchrony offer a valuable window into the core integrative disturbance in schizophrenia cognition.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Action Potentials / physiology*
  • Animals
  • Biological Clocks / physiology*
  • Cerebral Cortex / pathology
  • Cerebral Cortex / physiopathology*
  • Cortical Synchronization*
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Electroencephalography
  • Humans
  • Models, Neurological*
  • Nerve Net / pathology
  • Nerve Net / physiopathology*
  • Schizophrenia / pathology
  • Schizophrenia / physiopathology*