Claudia Scheffzük

Universität Heidelberg, Heidelberg, Baden-Wuerttemberg, Germany

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Publications (3)10.89 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Benzodiazepines have a broad spectrum of clinical applications including sedation, anti-anxiety, and anticonvulsive therapy. At the cellular level, benzodiazepines are allosteric modulators of GABA-A receptors; they increase the efficacy of inhibition in neuronal networks by prolonging the duration of inhibitory postsynaptic potentials. This mechanism of action predicts that benzodiazepines reduce the frequency of inhibition-driven network oscillations, consistent with observations from human and animal EEG. However, most of existing data are restricted to frequency bands below ∼30 Hz. Recent data suggests that faster cortical network rhythms are critically involved in several behavioral and cognitive tasks. We therefore analyzed diazepam effects on a large range of cortical network oscillations in freely moving mice, including theta (4-12 Hz), gamma (40-100 Hz) and fast gamma (120-160 Hz) oscillations. We also investigated diazepam effects over the coupling between theta phase and the amplitude fast oscillations. We report that diazepam causes a global slowing of oscillatory activity in all frequency domains. Oscillation power was changed differently for each pattern, with characteristic differences between active wakefulness, slow-wave sleep and REM sleep. Cross-frequency coupling strength, in contrast, was mostly unaffected by diazepam. Such state- and frequency-dependent actions of benzodiazepines on cortical network oscillations may be relevant for their specific cognitive effects. They also underline the strong interaction between local network oscillations and global brain states.
    Neuropharmacology 10/2012; · 4.11 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Spatiotemporal activity patterns of neurones are organized by different types of coherent network oscillations. Frequency content and cross-frequency coupling of cortical oscillations are strongly state-dependent, indicating that different patterns of wakefulness or sleep, respectively, support different cognitive or mnestic processes. It is therefore crucial to analyse specific sleep patterns with respect to their oscillations, including interaction between fast and slow rhythms. Here we report the oscillation profile of phasic rapid eye movement (REM), a form of REM sleep which has been implicated in hippocampus-dependent memory processing. In all analysed frequency bands (theta, gamma and fast gamma, respectively) we find higher frequencies and higher power in phasic REM compared to tonic REM or wakefulness. Theta-phase coupling of fast oscillations, however, was highest in tonic REM, followed by phasic REM and wakefulness. Our data suggest different roles of phasic and tonic REM for information processing or memory formation during sleep.
    Journal of Sleep Research 07/2012; · 3.04 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The mammalian brain expresses a wide range of state-dependent network oscillations which vary in frequency and spatial extension. Such rhythms can entrain multiple neurons into coherent patterns of activity, consistent with a role in behaviour, cognition and memory formation. Recent evidence suggests that locally generated fast network oscillations can be systematically aligned to long-range slow oscillations. It is likely that such cross-frequency coupling supports specific tasks including behavioural choice and working memory. We analyzed temporal coupling between high-frequency oscillations and EEG theta activity (4-12 Hz) in recordings from mouse parietal neocortex. Theta was exclusively present during active wakefulness and REM-sleep. Fast oscillations occurred in two separate frequency bands: gamma (40-100 Hz) and fast gamma (120-160 Hz). Theta, gamma and fast gamma were more prominent during active wakefulness as compared to REM-sleep. Coupling between theta and the two types of fast oscillations, however, was more pronounced during REM-sleep. This state-dependent cross-frequency coupling was particularly strong for theta-fast gamma interaction which increased 9-fold during REM as compared to active wakefulness. Theta-gamma coupling increased only by 1.5-fold. State-dependent cross-frequency-coupling provides a new functional characteristic of REM-sleep and establishes a unique property of neocortical fast gamma oscillations. Interactions between defined patterns of slow and fast network oscillations may serve selective functions in sleep-dependent information processing.
    PLoS ONE 01/2011; 6(12):e28489. · 3.73 Impact Factor