In the simplest scenario
oscillators of similar frequency within the same or different anatomical structures can entrain each other by a mechanism known as phase coupling. Phase coupling can be measured by coherence or preferably by more Proteases inhibitor advanced methods, which are independent of the amplitude fluctuations and based exclusively on phase. A well-known example of phase-phase coupling is Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical the coherent θ oscillations throughout the hippocampus-entorhinal cortex system. Multiple regions can generate θ oscillations and all layers form θ dipoles that fuse into a global “monolithic” single θ oscillator. This occurs despite the fact that the θ rhythm generators of isolated regions oscillate at different frequencies.31 Typically, when oscillators of similar frequencies are coupled, the overall frequency is determined by the fastest one.83 The computational advantages of phase synchronization have been illustrated by numerous experiments in various species, and excellent reviews summarize those findings.4,83-85 Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical A temporally less precise, but nevertheless important, interaction between oscillators of similar frequency is expressed by the temporal covariation of their power, known as amplitude comodulation Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical or power-power coupling. In this case, phase constancy between the waves may not be present but, instead, the
power (amplitude) envelopes of the oscillators are correlated (comodulation of power). This power-power synchrony of two or multiple oscillators in various networks can be coordinated by the Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical joint phase
biasing of the power of the faster oscillations by the slower rhythm, known as crossfrequency phase-amplitude (CFPA) coupling or nested oscillations. One reason why slow oscillations can impact faster ones in multiple brain areas has to do with the conduction velocities of cortical neurons. Compared with faster oscillators, slower oscillators involve Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical more neurons in a larger volume86 and are associated with larger membrane potential changes because in longer time windows spikes of many more upstream neurons can be integrated.61,87 Cross-frequency phase-amplitude coupling was first described between hippocampal unless θ and γ rhythms,12,88,89 and extended subsequently to across-structure coupling. 14,60,90-97 Gamma power can also be phasemodulated by α,97,98 spindle,99 delta,100 switching between UP and DOWN states of slow oscillations61,77,101 and ultraslow23 oscillations.13,16,17,84,102,103 The principle of cross-frequency phase-amplitude coupling generalizes to all known frequency bands in the mammalian cortex and has been reported between all co-occurring oscillators in interactive circuits at frequencies from as low as 0.025 Hz to as high as 500 Hz.