Human cortical oscillations: a neuromagnetic view through the skull

Trends Neurosci. 1997 Jan;20(1):44-9. doi: 10.1016/S0166-2236(96)10065-5.


The mammalian cerebral cortex generates a variety of rhythmic oscillations, detectable directly from the cortex or the scalp. Recent non-invasive recordings from intact humans, by means of neuromagnetometers with large sensor arrays, have shown that several regions of the healthy human cortex have their own intrinsic rhythms, typically 8-40 Hz in frequency, with modality- and frequency-specific reactivity. The conventional hypotheses about the functional significance of brain rhythms extend from epiphenomena to perceptual binding and object segmentation. Recent data indicate that some cortical rhythms can be related to periodic activity of peripheral sensor and effector organs.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cerebral Cortex / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Magnetoencephalography*
  • Periodicity*
  • Skull