Coupled oscillations are hypothesized to organize the processing of information across distributed brain circuits. This idea is supported by recent evidence, and newly developed techniques promise to put such theoretical framework to mechanistic testing. We review evidence suggesting that individual oscillatory cycles constitute a functional unit that organizes activity in neural networks, and that oscillatory phase (defined as the fraction of the wave cycle that has elapsed relative to the start of the cycle) is a key oscillatory parameter to implement the functions of oscillations in limbic networks. We highlight neural manipulation techniques that currently allow for causal testing of these hypotheses.
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