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Human fronto-parietal response scattering subserves vigilance at night.

Gaggioni, Giulia, Ly, Julien Q.M., Chellappa, Sarah L., Coppieters ‘t Wallant, Dorothée, Rosanova, Mario, Sarasso, Simone, Luxen, André, Salmon, Eric, Middleton, Benita, Massimini, Marcello , Schmidt, Christina, Casali, Adenauer, Phillips, Christophe and Vandewalle, Gilles (2018) Human fronto-parietal response scattering subserves vigilance at night. NeuroImage, 175. pp. 354-364.

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Lack of sleep has a considerable impact on vigilance: we perform worse, we make more errors, particularly at night, when we should be sleeping. Measures of brain functional connectivity suggest that decrease in vigilance during sleep loss is associated with an impaired cross-talk within the fronto-parietal cortex. However, fronto-parietal effective connectivity, which is more closely related to the causal cross-talk between brain regions, remains unexplored during prolonged wakefulness. In addition, no study has simultaneously investigated brain effective connectivity and wake-related changes in vigilance, preventing the concurrent incorporation of the two aspects. Here, we used electroencephalography (EEG) to record responses evoked by Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) applied over the frontal lobe in 23 healthy young men (18–30 yr.), while they simultaneously performed a vigilance task, during 8 sessions spread over 29 h of sustained wakefulness. We assessed Response Scattering (ReSc), an estimate of effective connectivity, as the propagation of TMS-evoked EEG responses over the fronto-parietal cortex. Results disclose a significant change in fronto-parietal ReSc with time spent awake. When focusing on the night-time period, when one should be sleeping, participants with lower fronto-parietal ReSc performed worse on the vigilance task. Conversely, no association was detected during the well-rested, daytime period. Night-time fronto-parietal ReSc also correlated with objective EEG measures of sleepiness and alertness. These changes were not accompanied by variations in fronto-parietal response complexity. These results suggest that decreased brain response propagation within the fronto-parietal cortex is associated to increased vigilance failure during night-time prolonged wakefulness. This study reveals a novel facet of the detrimental effect on brain function of extended night-time waking hours, which is increasingly common in our societies.

Item Type: Article
Divisions : Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences > School of Biosciences and Medicine
Authors :
Gaggioni, Giulia
Ly, Julien Q.M.
Chellappa, Sarah L.
Coppieters ‘t Wallant, Dorothée
Rosanova, Mario
Sarasso, Simone
Luxen, André
Salmon, Eric
Massimini, Marcello
Schmidt, Christina
Casali, Adenauer
Phillips, Christophe
Vandewalle, Gilles
Date : 28 March 2018
DOI : 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2018.03.055
Copyright Disclaimer : © 2018. This manuscript version is made available under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license
Uncontrolled Keywords : Effective connectivity; Brain signal complexity; Sleep deprivation; TMS-EEG; Vigilance; Fronto-parietal cortex
Depositing User : Clive Harris
Date Deposited : 14 Jan 2019 11:31
Last Modified : 12 Feb 2019 15:43

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