QEEG Spectral and Coherence Assessment of Autistic Children in Three Different Experimental Conditions

September 2013

Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
DOI: 10.1007/s10803-013-1909-5
SourcePubMed
Project: Autism
Philip A. DeFina
Calixto Machado
Mario Estévez
Gerry Leisman
Carlos Beltrán
…and others.

ABSTRACT: We studied autistics by quantitative EEG spectral and coherence analysis during three experimental conditions: basal, watching a cartoon with audio (V-A), and with muted audio band (VwA). Significant reductions were found for the absolute power spectral density (PSD) in the central region for delta and theta, and in the posterior region for sigma and beta bands, lateralized to the right hemisphere. When comparing VwA versus the V-A in the midline regions, we found significant decrements of absolute PSD for delta, theta and alpha, and increments for the beta and gamma bands. In autistics, VwA versus V-A tended to show lower coherence values in the right hemisphere. An impairment of visual and auditory sensory integration in autistics might explain our results.

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Premio Anual de Salud 2014: Heart rate variability for assessing comatose patients with different Glasgow Coma Scale scores

January 2015

DOI: 10.13140/RG.2.1.3372.5520
Conference: Premio Anual de Salud 2014: Heart rate variability for assessing comatose patients with different Glasgow Coma Scale scores
Project: Autism
Philip A. DeFina
Yazmina Machado-Ferrer
Mario Estévez
Mario Estévez
Calixto Machado
Calixto Machado
…and others.

ABSTRACT: Objective: to assess the autonomic nervous system (ANS) in coma by heart rate variability (HRV). Methods: Sixteen comatose patients and 22 normal subjects with comparable ages and genders were studied. Patients were classified in tow subgroups according to the Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS). Time, frequency, and informational HRV domain indices were calculated. Results: A notable reduction of HRV was found in  patients. Regarding the time domain indices, the triangular index, and the Delta_RRs, were significantly reduced in the subgroup with GCS = 3. Absolute power for the whole frequency spectrum decreased whenever GCS scores were lower. A significant decrement was found for absolute power of the VLF and LF bands in the subgroup of GCS = 3, and although it was lower for the HF band in these patients, those changes were not statistically significantly different. The LF/HF ratio and the Shannons entropy indices were significantly reduced inthe subroup with GCS = 3. Our results are discussed regarding the progressive dysfunction and the ANS networks when coma deepens. Conclusions: The HRV procedure is a powerful tool to assess the ANS in comatose patients. Significance: HRV is a minimally invasive, low-cost methodology, suitable for assessing the ANS in coma.

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Anatomic and Functional Connectivity Relationships in Autistic Children

April 2018
Conference: American Academy of Neurology At: Los Angeles, California, USA
Project: Autism
Philip A Defina
Yanin Machado
Mauricio Chinchilla
Yazmina Machado
…and others.

ABSTRACT: Objective: To determine the relationship between the anatomic (AC) vs. functional (FC) connectivity, considering short-range and long-range brain networks. Background: In a recent published paper (Machado et al., 2013), we showed that in autistics studied with video without audio tasks vs. video without audio tasks, tended to show lower coherence values in the right hemispheres, suggesting an impairment of visual and auditory sensory integration in autistics. Design/Methods: Aanatomic connectivity was assessed by the DW-MRI technique and functional connectivity by EEG coherence calculation, in three experimental conditions: basal, watching a popular cartoon with audio (V-A), and with muted audio track (VwA). Results: For short-range connections, basal records, statistical significant correlations for all EEG bands in the left hemisphere were found, meanwhile in the right hemispheres no significant correlation for fast EEG frequency bands were noticed. For the V-A condition, significant correlations mainly diminished for the left hemisphere; for the right hemisphere again no significant correlations for the fast EEG frequency bands were found. For the VwA condition, significant correlations for the rapid EEG frequencies mainly disappeared for the right hemisphere. For long-range connections, basal records, similar correlations were found for both hemispheres. For the right hemisphere significant correlations incremented to all EEG bands for the V-A condition, but these significant correlations disappeared for the fast EEG frequencies in the VwA condition. Conclusions: It appears that in a resting-state condition, AC is better associated with functional connectivity for short-range connections in the left hemisphere. V-A experimental condition enriches AC and FC association for long-range connections in the right hemisphere. This might be related to an effective connectivity improvement due to visual and auditory stimulation. An impaired audiovisual interaction in the right hemisphere Study Supported by: NA

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Zolpidem Arousing Effect In Persistent Vegetative State Patients: Autonomic, Eeg And Behavioral Assessment

September 2013

Current pharmaceutical design 20(26)
DOI: 10.2174/13816128113196660646
SourcePubMed
Project: PVS / MCS
Philip A. DeFina
Calixto Machado
Mario Estévez
Rafael Rodriguez-Rojas
Nuvia Pérez-Cruz

ABSTRACT: Objective: To study the Zolpidem arousing effect in persistent vegetative state (PVS) patients combining clinical evaluation, autonomic assessment by heart rate variability (HRV), and EEG records. Methods: We studied a group of 8 PVS patients and other 8 healthy control subjects, matched by age and gender. The patients and controls received drug or placebo in two experimental sessions, separated by 10-14 days. The first 30 minutes of the session were considered the basal record, and then Zolpidem was administered. All participants were evaluated clinically, by EEG, and by HRV during the basal record, and for 90 minutes after drug intake. Results: We found in all patients, time-related arousing signs after Zolpidem intake: behavioral (yawns and hiccups), activation of EEG cortical activity, and a vagolytic chronotropic effect without a significant increment of the vasomotor sympathetic tone. Conclusions: We demonstrated time-related arousing signs after Zolpidem intake. We discussed possible mechanisms to explain these patho-physiological findings regarding EEG cortical activation and an autonomic vagolytic drug effect. As this autonomic imbalance might induce cardiocirculatory complications, which we didn’t find in any of our patients, we suggest developing future trials under control of physiological indices by bedside monitoring. However, considering that this arousing Zolpidem effect might be certainly related to brain function improvement, it should be particularly considered for the development of new neuro-rehabilitation programs in PVS cases. According to the literature review, we claim that this is the first report about the vagolitic effect of Zolpidem in PVS cases.

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The new neuroscience frontier: Promoting neuroplasticity and brain repair in Traumatic Brain Injury

November 2009

The Clinical Neuropsychologist 23(8):1391-9
DOI: 10.1080/13854040903058978
SourcePubMed
Philip A Defina
Jonathan Fellus
Mary Zemyan Polito
John Deluca
…and others.

ABSTRACT: Increased awareness of traumatic brain injury (TBI) in the military, a persistent call for evidence-based treatment, and recent government funding have revealed new research opportunities in neuroscience. This paper describes a relatively new frontier for research: that of the facilitation or enhancement of neuroplasticity and brain repair in TBI using novel treatment protocols. Such protocols, algorithmically introduced, may be tailored to the individual through the matching of neuromarkers with specific interventions. Examples of neuromarkers and interventions employed for the purpose of neuromodulation are reported. Problems with lack of controlled studies and inferring causation in correlational research are noted. Healthy skepticism and open-minded creativity are needed so that we can think in unorthodox ways, create partnerships, harness available knowledge and expertise, and ultimately develop effective treatments.

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