Spectral modification by operant conditioning of cortical theta suppression in rats

Mootaek Roh, Il Sung Jang, Kyoungho Suk, Maan Gee Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: Brain activity is known to be voluntarily controllable by neurofeedback, a kind of electroencephalographic (EEG) operant conditioning. Although its efficacy in clinical effects has been reported, it is yet to be uncovered whether or how a specific band activity is controllable. Here, we examined EEG spectral profiles along with conditioning training of a specific brain activity, theta band (4-8 Hz) amplitude, in rats. Methods: During training, the experimental group received electrical stimulation to the medial forebrain bundle contingent to suppression of theta activity, while the control group received stimulation non-contingent to its own band activity. Results: In the experimental group, theta activity gradually decreased within the training session, while there was an increase of theta activity in the control group. There was a significant difference in theta activity during the sessions between the two groups. The spectral theta peak, originally located at 7 Hz, shifted further towards higher frequencies in the experimental group. Conclusion: Our results showed that an operant conditioning technique could train rats to control their specific EEG activity indirectly, and it may be used as an animal model for studying how neuronal systems work in human neurofeedback.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)93-104
Number of pages12
JournalClinical Psychopharmacology and Neuroscience
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2019


  • Electroencephalography
  • Neurofeedback
  • Operant conditioning
  • Rats
  • Theta


Dive into the research topics of 'Spectral modification by operant conditioning of cortical theta suppression in rats'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this