Power spectra from local field potentials (LFPs) recorded post-operatively from the deep brain stimulation (DBS) macroelectrode show prominence of the beta rhythm (11-30 Hz) in untreated Parkinson's disease (PD). Dopaminergic medication and movement attenuate this beta band in PD. In this pilot study of six sides in four patients, we recorded LFPs from the DBS electrode in untreated PD patients in the operating room. In all cases, there was a peak in the time-frequency spectrogram in the beta frequency range when the patients were at rest, which was associated with attenuation in the same range with movement. The actual frequency range and the strength of the beta peak varied among cases. In two patients, intra-operative constraints permitted recording of LFPs at rest, before and immediately after subthalamic nucleus (STN) DBS. In both patients we documented that STN DBS caused a significant attenuation in power in the beta band at rest that persisted for 15-25 s after DBS had been turned off (P < 0.01). From one case, our data suggest that the beta rhythm attenuation was most prominent within the STN itself. This study shows for the first time that STN DBS attenuates the power in the prominent beta band recorded in the STN of patients with PD. These pilot findings raise the interesting possibility of using this biomarker for closed loop DBS or neuromodulation.