Stimulus-locked transient phase dynamics, synchronization and desynchronization of two oscillators
Institute of Medicine, Research Centre Jülich - D-52425 Jülich, Germany
Accepted: 23 April 2002
Transient phase dynamics, synchronization and desynchronization which are stimulus-locked (i.e. tightly time-locked to a repetitively administered stimulus) are studied in two coupled phase oscillators in the presence of noise. The presented method makes it possible to detect such processes in numerical and experimental signals. The time resolution is enormous, since it is only restricted by the sampling rate. Stochastic stimulus locking of the phases or the n:m phase difference at a particular time t relative to stimulus onset is defined by the presence of one or more prominent peaks in the cross-trial distribution of the phases or the n:m phase difference at time t relative to stimulus onset in an ensemble of post-stimulus responses. Unlike the presented approach, both triggered averaging (where an ensemble of post-stimulus responses is simply averaged) and cross-trial cross correlation (CTCC) lead to severe misinterpretations: The oscillators' coupling may cause a transient anti-phase clustering of the post-stimulus responses. Triggered averaging cannot distinguish such a response decorrelation from a mean amplitude decrease of the single responses. CTCC not only depends on the oscillators' phase difference but also on their phases and, thus, inevitably displays “artificial” oscillations that are not related to synchronization or desynchronization.
PACS: 05.45.Xt – Synchronization; coupled oscillators / 05.40.Ca – Noise / 87.19.La – Neuroscience
© EDP Sciences, 2002