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Papers of the Week

Papers: 28 May 2022 - 3 Jun 2022


Front Neurosci


High-Density Electroencephalography-Informed Multiband Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging Reveals Rhythm-Specific Activations Within the Trigeminal Nociceptive Network.


The interest in exploring trigeminal pain processing has grown in recent years, mainly due to various pathologies (such as migraine) related to this system. However, research efforts have mainly focused on understanding molecular mechanisms or studying pathological states. On the contrary, non-invasive imaging studies are limited by either spatial or temporal resolution depending on the modality used. This can be overcome by using multimodal imaging techniques such as simultaneous functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and electroencephalography (EEG). Although this technique has already been applied to neuroscientific research areas and consequently gained insights into diverse sensory systems and pathologies, only a few studies have applied EEG-fMRI in the field of pain processing and none in the trigeminal system. Focusing on trigeminal nociception, we used a trigeminal pain paradigm, which has been well-studied in either modality. For validation, we first acquired stand-alone measures with each imaging modality before fusing them in a simultaneous session. Furthermore, we introduced a new, yet simple, non-parametric correlation technique, which exploits trial-to-trial variance of both measurement techniques with Spearman's correlations, to consolidate the results gained by the two modalities. This new technique does not presume a linear relationship and needs a few repetitions per subject. We also showed cross-validation by analyzing visual stimulations. Using these techniques, we showed that EEG power changes in the theta-band induced by trigeminal pain correlate with fMRI activation within the brainstem, whereas those of gamma-band oscillations correlate with BOLD signals in higher cortical areas.