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Time-frequency analysis of chemosensory event-related potentials to characterize the cortical representation of odors in humans

Caroline Huart, Valéry Legrain UGent, Thomas Hummel, Philippe Rombaux and Andre Mouraux (2012) PLOS ONE. 7(3).
abstract
Background: The recording of olfactory and trigeminal chemosensory event-related potentials (ERPs) has been proposed as an objective and non-invasive technique to study the cortical processing of odors in humans. Until now, the responses have been characterized mainly using across-trial averaging in the time domain. Unfortunately, chemosensory ERPs, in particular, olfactory ERPs, exhibit a relatively low signal-to-noise ratio. Hence, although the technique is increasingly used in basic research as well as in clinical practice to evaluate people suffering from olfactory disorders, its current clinical relevance remains very limited. Here, we used a time-frequency analysis based on the wavelet transform to reveal EEG responses that are not strictly phase-locked to onset of the chemosensory stimulus. We hypothesized that this approach would significantly enhance the signal-to-noise ratio of the EEG responses to chemosensory stimulation because, as compared to conventional time-domain averaging, (1) it is less sensitive to temporal jitter and (2) it can reveal non phase-locked EEG responses such as event-related synchronization and desynchronization. Methodology/Principal Findings: EEG responses to selective trigeminal and olfactory stimulation were recorded in 11 normosmic subjects. A Morlet wavelet was used to characterize the elicited responses in the time-frequency domain. We found that this approach markedly improved the signal-to-noise ratio of the obtained EEG responses, in particular, following olfactory stimulation. Furthermore, the approach allowed characterizing non phase-locked components that could not be identified using conventional time-domain averaging. Conclusion/Significance: By providing a more robust and complete view of how odors are represented in the human brain, our approach could constitute the basis for a robust tool to study olfaction, both for basic research and clinicians.
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
organization
year
type
journalArticle (original)
publication status
published
subject
keyword
OPERATING CHARACTERISTIC CURVES, EVOKED-POTENTIALS, IDIOPATHIC PARKINSONS-DISEASE, OLFACTORY FUNCTION, NASAL-MUCOSA, EEG-RESPONSES, CLINICAL-SIGNIFICANCE, TRIGEMINAL STIMULI, BLIND SEPARATION, AGE
journal title
PLOS ONE
PLoS One
volume
7
issue
3
article_number
e33221
pages
11 pages
Web of Science type
Article
Web of Science id
000303062800050
JCR category
MULTIDISCIPLINARY SCIENCES
JCR impact factor
3.73 (2012)
JCR rank
7/56 (2012)
JCR quartile
1 (2012)
ISSN
1932-6203
DOI
10.1371/journal.pone.0033221
language
English
UGent publication?
yes
classification
A1
copyright statement
I have transferred the copyright for this publication to the publisher
id
2124968
handle
http://hdl.handle.net/1854/LU-2124968
date created
2012-05-31 13:26:31
date last changed
2012-06-01 11:04:41
@article{2124968,
  abstract     = {Background: The recording of olfactory and trigeminal chemosensory event-related potentials (ERPs) has been proposed as an objective and non-invasive technique to study the cortical processing of odors in humans. Until now, the responses have been characterized mainly using across-trial averaging in the time domain. Unfortunately, chemosensory ERPs, in particular, olfactory ERPs, exhibit a relatively low signal-to-noise ratio. Hence, although the technique is increasingly used in basic research as well as in clinical practice to evaluate people suffering from olfactory disorders, its current clinical relevance remains very limited. Here, we used a time-frequency analysis based on the wavelet transform to reveal EEG responses that are not strictly phase-locked to onset of the chemosensory stimulus. We hypothesized that this approach would significantly enhance the signal-to-noise ratio of the EEG responses to chemosensory stimulation because, as compared to conventional time-domain averaging, (1) it is less sensitive to temporal jitter and (2) it can reveal non phase-locked EEG responses such as event-related synchronization and desynchronization. Methodology/Principal Findings: EEG responses to selective trigeminal and olfactory stimulation were recorded in 11 normosmic subjects. A Morlet wavelet was used to characterize the elicited responses in the time-frequency domain. We found that this approach markedly improved the signal-to-noise ratio of the obtained EEG responses, in particular, following olfactory stimulation. Furthermore, the approach allowed characterizing non phase-locked components that could not be identified using conventional time-domain averaging. Conclusion/Significance: By providing a more robust and complete view of how odors are represented in the human brain, our approach could constitute the basis for a robust tool to study olfaction, both for basic research and clinicians.},
  articleno    = {e33221},
  author       = {Huart, Caroline and Legrain, Val{\'e}ry and Hummel, Thomas and Rombaux, Philippe and Mouraux, Andre},
  issn         = {1932-6203},
  journal      = {PLOS ONE},
  keyword      = {OPERATING CHARACTERISTIC CURVES,EVOKED-POTENTIALS,IDIOPATHIC PARKINSONS-DISEASE,OLFACTORY FUNCTION,NASAL-MUCOSA,EEG-RESPONSES,CLINICAL-SIGNIFICANCE,TRIGEMINAL STIMULI,BLIND SEPARATION,AGE},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {3},
  pages        = {11},
  title        = {Time-frequency analysis of chemosensory event-related potentials to characterize the cortical representation of odors in humans},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0033221},
  volume       = {7},
  year         = {2012},
}

Chicago
Huart, Caroline, Valéry Legrain, Thomas Hummel, Philippe Rombaux, and Andre Mouraux. 2012. “Time-frequency Analysis of Chemosensory Event-related Potentials to Characterize the Cortical Representation of Odors in Humans.” Plos One 7 (3).
APA
Huart, C., Legrain, V., Hummel, T., Rombaux, P., & Mouraux, A. (2012). Time-frequency analysis of chemosensory event-related potentials to characterize the cortical representation of odors in humans. PLOS ONE, 7(3).
Vancouver
1.
Huart C, Legrain V, Hummel T, Rombaux P, Mouraux A. Time-frequency analysis of chemosensory event-related potentials to characterize the cortical representation of odors in humans. PLOS ONE. 2012;7(3).
MLA
Huart, Caroline, Valéry Legrain, Thomas Hummel, et al. “Time-frequency Analysis of Chemosensory Event-related Potentials to Characterize the Cortical Representation of Odors in Humans.” PLOS ONE 7.3 (2012): n. pag. Print.