Alpha neurofeedback improves the maintaining ability of alpha activity

Department of Pharmacology, Kyungpook National University, Daegu, Republic of Korea.
Neuroreport (Impact Factor: 1.52). 03/2008; 19(3):315-7. DOI: 10.1097/WNR.0b013e3282f4f022
Source: PubMed


The effects of alpha-neurofeedback (ANF) on electroencephalographic alpha-activity were investigated. Each session consisted of a 2.5-min eye-opened state and 17.5-min of ANF, which was divided into 16 1.25-min bins. Alpha amplitudes were gradually increased as the session was repeated. The maximum value at the start of ANF gradually decreased as time passed, but the slowdown of alpha-activity during each session was decreased as the session was repeated. The correlation between alpha-activity at the end of ANF and at the following session's eye-opened state was highly significant. These results showed that ANF enhances the ability of alpha-activity to maintain itself rather than the increase of alpha-amplitude during intrasession and that the maintained alpha-activity during former training remained until the next session.

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    • "It is characterized by a peak in the range [7.5 − 12.5] Hz and correlates to several factors such as age, memory performance, brain volume and task demands [7]. Several NF procedures have been applied over the entire classical alpha band (or the SMR band), but failed in fulfilling the three criteria stated above: Vernon et al. found cognitive improvement but changes in the EEG topography rather than a focused increase in the trained frequency bands and scalp locations [4], and Cho et al. showed trainability but cognitive improvement was not assessed [8]. An important problem to achieve those goals in a NF alpha training could be the large inter-user variations presented on alpha frequency, and the unspecific factors of the entire classical alpha band in cognitive performance [7]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Neurofeedback (NF) training has revealed its therapeutical effects to treat a variety of neurological and psychological disorders, and has demonstrated its feasibility to improve certain cognitive aptitudes in healthy users. Although promising results of NF training exist in recent literature, the reliability of its effects remains questioned due to a lack of deep studies examining its impact on the human electrophysiology. This paper presents a NF training aimed at improving working memory performance in healthy users by the enhancement of upper alpha band. A user-specific training was used (upper alpha was determined for each user using the individual alpha frequency) to reduce the unspecific factors of training the entire classical alpha band as traditional NF usually does. EEG assessments in active and passive open-eyes state were conducted pre/post the NF training. The EEG analyses reveal the UA enhancement during the active tasks which is independent of other frequency bands. UA was also enhanced in the passive state but independence could not be obtained in lower alpha band. Finally, significant improvement in working memory was obtained with regard to a control group.
    Full-text · Conference Paper · Aug 2011
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    • "Given that the UA amplitudes were significantly augmented at the last when compared to the first session with the initial base rate measurements, our data thus confirm the results of trainability of UA from Hanslmayr et al. (2005) and extend them to a long-term aspect. Also, the findings of a long-term alpha enhancement reported from Cho et al. (2008) could be confirmed for UA with the applied NFT. "
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    ABSTRACT: In this study, the individually determined upper alpha frequency band in EEG (electroencephalogram) was investigated as a neurofeedback parameter. Fourteen subjects were trained on five sessions within 1 week by means of feedback dependent on the current upper alpha amplitude. On the first and fifth session, cognitive ability was tested by a mental rotation test. As a result, eleven of the fourteen subjects showed significant training success. Individually determined upper alpha was increased independently of other frequency bands. The enhancement of cognitive performance was significantly larger for the neurofeedback group than for a control group who did not receive feedback. Thus, enhanced cognitive control went along with an increased upper alpha amplitude that was found in the neurofeedback group only.
    Full-text · Article · Jan 2011 · NeuroImage
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