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Keywords:

  • adolescent;
  • dipole;
  • electroencephalogram;
  • slow waves;
  • source localization

Aim

Posterior slow waves of youth have a well-known electroencephalographic pattern that peaks in adolescence and usually disappears in adulthood. In general, posterior slow waves of youth are regarded as normal, but some reports have suggested that their presence is related to immature personalities or inappropriate social behavior. The physiological significance of this electroencephalographic pattern, however, remains unclear. The purpose of this study was to investigate the neural origins of posterior slow waves of youth using dipole source modeling.

Methods

Electroencephalographic epochs, including clear posterior slow waves of youth, were visually selected from electroencephalograms obtained from six normal adolescents using 25 scalp electrodes. The selected epochs were then averaged by arranging the negative peak of the slow waves at the occipital area of each epoch on the time axis. The averaged waveforms consisting of six right and one left posterior slow waves of youth were used for dipole source analysis. A single equivalent current dipole was estimated for the averaged waveforms.

Results

The best equivalent current dipoles were estimated to be located in or around the fusiform and middle occipital gyrus ipsilateral to the posterior slow waves of youth.

Conclusions

The location of the estimated dipoles of posterior slow waves of youth was on the so-called ventral visual pathway. Further research is required to clarify the physiological significance of posterior slow waves of youth with respect to their origin.