Movement related dynamics of subthalmo-cortical alpha connectivity in Parkinson's disease.
Functional neurosurgical techniques provide a unique opportunity to explore patterns of interaction between the cerebral cortex and basal ganglia in patients with Parkinson's disease (PD). Previous work using simultaneous magnetoencephalographic (MEG) and local field potential (LFP) recordings from the region of the subthalamic nucleus (STNr) has characterised resting patterns of connectivity in the alpha and beta frequency bands and their modulation by dopaminergic medication. Recently we have also characterised the effect of movement on patterns of gamma band coherence between the STNr and cortical sites. Here we specifically investigate how the prominent coherence between the STNr and temporal cortex in the alpha band is modulated by movement both on and off dopaminergic medication in patients following the insertion of Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) electrodes. We show that movement is associated with a suppression of local alpha power in the temporal cortex and STNr that begins about 2s prior to a self-paced movement and is independent of dopaminergic status. In contrast, the peak reduction in coherence between these sites occurs after movement onset and is more marked in the on than in the off dopaminergic medication state. The difference in alpha band coherence on and off medication was found to correlate with the drug related improvement in clinical parameters. Overall, the movement-related behaviour of activities in the alpha band in patients with PD serves to highlight the role of dopamine in modulating large-scale, interregional synchronisation.