The role of brain oscillations as functional correlates of cognitive systems: a study of frontal inhibitory control in alcoholism

Int J Psychophysiol. 2004 Jan;51(2):155-80. doi: 10.1016/j.ijpsycho.2003.09.004.


Event-related oscillations play a key role in understanding the brain dynamics and human information processing. In the present study, the Go/No-Go paradigm has been used to examine whether alcoholics have poor inhibitory control as compared to control subjects in terms of different oscillatory brain responses. The matching pursuit algorithm was used to decompose the event-related electroencephalogram into oscillations of different frequencies. It was found that alcoholics (n=58) showed significant reduction in delta (1.0-3.0 Hz) and theta (3.5-7.0 Hz) power during No-Go trials as compared to controls (n=29). This reduction was prominent at the frontal region. The decreased delta and theta power associated with No-Go processing perhaps suggests a deficient inhibitory control and information-processing mechanism. A neuro-cognitive model has been provided to explain the findings. It is suggested that the oscillatory correlates during cognitive processing can be an endophenotypic marker in alcoholism.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Alcoholism / physiopathology*
  • Brain / anatomy & histology
  • Brain / physiopathology*
  • Brain Mapping
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Cognition / physiology*
  • Electroencephalography
  • Evoked Potentials / physiology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mental Processes
  • Middle Aged
  • Neural Inhibition / physiology*
  • Neural Networks, Computer
  • Photic Stimulation