The synchronous activity of large numbers of neurons in the brain generates significant electric fields. These electric fields have been previously shown to influence pathological activity such as epileptic seizures. During slow wave sleep, the neocortex also generates large electric fields. Here we asked whether or not these electric fields may actively participate in the control of neocortical activity during slow wave sleep.
Here we demonstrate that the electrical fields generated by the neocortex actually influence its activity.
This seminar is based upon a recent publication: Frohlich, F. and McCormick, D.A. (2010) Endogenous electric fields may guide neocortical network activity. Neuron 67: 129-143.