Synchronized beta-band oscillations in a model of the globus pallidus-subthalamic nucleus network under external input

Sungwoo Ahn, S. Elizabeth Zauber, Robert M. Worth, Leonid L. Rubchinsky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

11 Scopus citations


Hypokinetic symptoms of Parkinson's disease are usually associated with excessively strong oscillations and synchrony in the beta frequency band. The origin of this synchronized oscillatory dynamics is being debated. Cortical circuits may be a critical source of excessive beta in Parkinson’s disease. However, subthalamo-pallidal circuits were also suggested to be a substantial component in generation and/or maintenance of Parkinsonian beta activity. Here we study how the subthalamo-pallidal circuits interact with input signals in the beta frequency band, representing cortical input. We use conductance-based models of the subthalamo-pallidal network and two types of input signals: artificially-generated inputs and input signals obtained from recordings in Parkinsonian patients. The resulting model network dynamics is compared with the dynamics of the experimental recordings from patient’s basal ganglia. Our results indicate that the subthalamo-pallidal model network exhibits multiple resonances in response to inputs in the beta band. For a relatively broad range of network parameters, there is always a certain input strength, which will induce patterns of synchrony similar to the experimentally observed ones. This ability of the subthalamo-pallidal network to exhibit realistic patterns of synchronous oscillatory activity under broad conditions may indicate that these basal ganglia circuits are directly involved in the expression of Parkinsonian synchronized beta oscillations. Thus, Parkinsonian synchronized beta oscillations may be promoted by the simultaneous action of both cortical (or some other) and subthalamo-pallidal network mechanisms. Hence, these mechanisms are not necessarily mutually exclusive.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number134
JournalFrontiers in Computational Neuroscience
Issue numberDEC
StatePublished - Dec 20 2016


  • Basal ganglia
  • Globus pallidus
  • Oscillations
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Subthalamic nucleus
  • Synchronization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience (miscellaneous)
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience

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