Frontal midline theta oscillations during working memory maintenance and episodic encoding and retrieval

Neuroimage. 2014 Jan 15;85 Pt 2(0 2):721-9. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2013.08.003. Epub 2013 Aug 8.


Neural oscillations in the theta band (4-8 Hz) are prominent in the human electroencephalogram (EEG), and many recent electrophysiological studies in animals and humans have implicated scalp-recorded frontal midline theta (FMT) in working memory and episodic memory encoding and retrieval processes. However, the functional significance of theta oscillations in human memory processes remains largely unknown. Here, we review studies in human and animals examining how scalp-recorded FMT relates to memory behaviors and also their possible neural generators. We also discuss models of the functional relevance of theta oscillations to memory processes and suggest promising directions for future research.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Electroencephalography
  • Frontal Lobe / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Memory, Episodic*
  • Memory, Short-Term / physiology*
  • Mental Recall / physiology
  • Theta Rhythm / physiology*