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Keywords:

  • magnetoencephalography;
  • auditory;
  • cortex;
  • brain;
  • artifact;
  • single response

Abstract

Magnetic interference signals often hamper analysis of magnetoencephalographic (MEG) measurements. Artifact sources in the proximity of the sensors cause strong and spatially complex signals that are particularly challenging for the existing interference-suppression methods. Here we demonstrate the performance of the temporally extended signal space separation method (tSSS) in removing strong interference caused by external and nearby sources on auditory-evoked magnetic fields—the sources of which are well established. The MEG signals were contaminated by normal environmental interference, by artificially produced additional external interference, and by nearby artifacts produced by a piece of magnetized wire in the subject's lip. After tSSS processing, even the single-trial auditory responses had a good-enough signal-to-noise ratio for detailed waveform and source analysis. Waveforms and source locations of the tSSS-reconstructed data were in good agreement with the responses from the control condition without extra interference. Our results demonstrate that tSSS is a robust and efficient method for removing a wide range of different types of interference signals in neuromagnetic multichannel measurements. Hum Brain Mapp 2009. © 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc.