Diurnal alterations of brain electrical activity in healthy adults: A LORETA study

Marton Toth, Attila Kiss, Peter Kosztolanyi, Istvan Kondakor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

18 Citations (Scopus)


EEG background activity was investigated by low resolution brain electromagnetic tomography (LORETA) to test the diurnal alterations of brain electrical activity in healthy adults. Fourteen right-handed healthy male postgraduate medical students were examined four times (8 a.m., 2 p.m., 8 p.m. and next day 2 p.m.). LORETA was computed to localize generators of EEG frequency components. Comparing the EEG activity between 2 p.m. and 8 a.m., increased activity was seen (1) in theta band (6.5-8 Hz) in the left prefrontal, bilateral mesial frontal and anterior cingulate cortex; (2) in alpha2 band (10.5-12 Hz) in the bilateral precuneus and posterior parietal cortex as well as in the right temporo-occipital cortex; (3) in beta1-2-3 band (12.5-30 Hz) in the right hippocampus and parieto-occipital cortex, left frontal and bilateral cingulate cortex. Comparing the brain activity between 8 p.m. and 8 a.m., (1) midline theta activity disappeared; (2) increased alpha2 band activity was seen in the left hemisphere (including the left hippocampus); and (3) increased beta bands activity was found over almost the whole cortex (including both of hippocampi) with the exception of left temporo-occipital region. There were no significant changes between the background activities of 2 p.m. and next day 2 p.m. Characteristic distribution of increased activity of cortex (no change in delta band, and massive changes in the upper frequency bands) may mirror increasing activation of reticular formation and thus evoked thalamocortical feedback mechanisms as a sign of maintenance of arousal.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)63-76
Number of pages14
JournalBrain Topography
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2007


  • Diurnal
  • Human multichannel EEG
  • Retest reliability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anatomy
  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Diurnal alterations of brain electrical activity in healthy adults: A LORETA study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this