Invasive brain-computer interfaces (iBCIs) are a promising tool for reestablishing communication of paralyzed patients. For long-term application of iBCIs, lesser invasive recording techniques are favorable because of the reduced health risk after implantation. High-density electrode arrays placed on top of the dura mater (epidural placement) enable meso-invasive high-resolution recordings of neuronal activity from large cortical areas. However, high-resolution epidural field potentials (µEFPs) have lesser signal quality in comparison to more invasively recorded signals. In this talk, I present studies which investigate whether µEFPs hold sufficient information about cortical processing, despite their lower signal quality. Therefore, µEFPs from the primary visual cortex of macaque monkeys were recorded while the animals were confronted with different visual stimuli or executed attentional shifts to different spatial locations in the visual field. Subsequently, the decodability of visual and cognitive information from the µEFP was investigated. The usage of a receiver-Operating characteristic based feature extraction method and support vector machines enabled precise decoding of the spatial location of the stimuli. In addition, stimulus size, shape and luminance as well as spatial attention modulated the trial-averaged µEFP. These results show that µEFPs hold considerable information about cortical processes evoked by sensory and cognitive events, thereby indicating a possible application of µEFPs in the field of iBCIs.
Towards meso-invasive brain-computer interfaces: Decoding sensory and cognitive information from epidural field potentials
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