The effect of stimulation frequency and retinal stimulus location on visual evoked potential topography

Brain Topogr. Fall 2007;20(1):15-20. doi: 10.1007/s10548-007-0026-1. Epub 2007 Jun 21.


The activity of cortical neurons is influenced by retinal stimulus location and temporal modulation. We investigated how reversal frequency of black-and-white checkerboard patterns presented in different parts of the visual field affects evoked potential topography. Visual evoked potentials were recorded from an array of 16 electrodes over the occipital cortex in 12 healthy adults. A checkerboard reversal stimulus (40' check size) was presented with frequencies between 1.95 reversals/s and 7.81 reversals/s in the center or in the left or right hemiretina. Evoked potential fields displayed the well-known components of pattern reversal evoked activity. Computation of FFT and wavelets displayed electrical brain responses directly related to stimulation frequency. Further analysis showed that both retinal stimulus location and stimulation frequency affected visual evoked activity. Field strength as well as scalp field topography changed significantly with different reversal frequency. In addition, the pattern of lateralization of components also depended on temporal frequency of stimulation. Electrical brain activity elicited by visual stimuli shows globally similar features which are modulated by stimulus location and frequency. Our results indicate that--at least partly--different neuronal assemblies are activated by stimuli of different temporal characteristics.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Brain / physiology*
  • Brain Mapping
  • Electroencephalography
  • Evoked Potentials, Visual / physiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Photic Stimulation
  • Retina / physiology*
  • Scalp / anatomy & histology
  • Scalp / physiology
  • Visual Fields / physiology