Publication Details

Bellot-Saez, A., Cohen, G., van Schaik, A., Ooi, L., Morley, J. W. & Buskila, Y. (2018). Astrocytic modulation of cortical oscillations. Scientific Reports, 8 (1), 11565-1-11565-13.


Brain waves are rhythmic voltage oscillations emerging from the synchronization of individual neurons into a neuronal network. These oscillations range from slow to fast fluctuations, and are classified by power and frequency band, with different frequency bands being associated with specific behaviours. It has been postulated that at least ten distinct mechanisms are required to cover the frequency range of neural oscillations, however the mechanisms that gear the transition between distinct oscillatory frequencies are unknown. In this study, we have used electrophysiological recordings to explore the involvement of astrocytic K+ clearance processes in modulating neural oscillations at both network and cellular levels. Our results indicate that impairment of astrocytic K+ clearance capabilities, either through blockade of K+ uptake or astrocytic connectivity, enhance network excitability and form high power network oscillations over a wide range of frequencies. At the cellular level, local increases in extracellular K+ results in modulation of the oscillatory behaviour of individual neurons, which underlies the network behaviour. Since astrocytes are central for maintaining K+ homeostasis, our study suggests that modulation of their inherent capabilities to clear K+ from the extracellular milieu is a potential mechanism to optimise neural resonance behaviour and thus tune neural oscillations.



Link to publisher version (DOI)