Concurrent EEG and functional MRI recording and integration analysis for dynamic cortical activity imaging

Thinh Nguyen, Thomas Potter, Christof Karmonik, Robert Grossman, Yingchun Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Electroencephalography (EEG) and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) are two of the fundamental noninvasive methods for identifying brain activity. Multimodal methods have sought to combine the high temporal resolution of EEG with the spatial precision of fMRI, but the complexity of this approach is currently in need of improvement. The protocol presented here describes the recently developed spatiotemporal fMRI-constrained EEG source imaging method, which seeks to rectify source biases and improve EEG-fMRI source localization through the dynamic recruitment of fMRI sub-regions. The process begins with the collection of multimodal data from concurrent EEG and fMRI scans, the generation of 3D cortical models, and independent EEG and fMRI processing. The processed fMRI activation maps are then split into multiple priors, according to their location and surrounding area. These are taken as priors in a two-level hierarchical Bayesian algorithm for EEG source localization. For each window of interest (defined by the operator), specific segments of the fMRI activation map will be identified as active to optimize a parameter known as model evidence. These will be used as soft constraints on the identified cortical activity, increasing the specificity of the multimodal imaging method by reducing cross-talk and avoiding erroneous activity in other conditionally active fMRI regions. The method generates cortical maps of activity and time-courses, which may be taken as final results, or used as a basis for further analyses (analyses of correlation, causation, etc.) While the method is somewhat limited by its modalities (it will not find EEG-invisible sources), it is broadly compatible with most major processing software, and is suitable for most neuroimaging studies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere56417
JournalJournal of Visualized Experiments
Issue number136
StatePublished - Jun 30 2018


  • Biology
  • Brain
  • EEG
  • Electrical source imaging
  • FMRI
  • Issue 136
  • Multimodal
  • Source localization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)


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