This paper uses EEG to examine the timecourse of synchronization patterns across the brain during a simple cognitive task.  First, there was low frequency (delta) synchrony, which may reflect global, long-range synchronization and may help organize the higher frequency synchrony that followed.  Then, there was higher frequency (gamma) synchrony, which may reflect reorganization of local circuits for bottom-up processing of sensory inputs.  Finally, there was beta synchrony, which may reflect the final stage of top-down processing in the task.  Gamma and beta synchronization has been shown to be correlated with bottom-up vs top-down cortical processing (Buschman and Miller, 2007; Chanes et al, 2013; Ibos et al, 2013).  This study identifies and confirms some of the proposed mechanisms of global information integration in the brain.
Brazdil et al (2013)

For further reading:
Buschman, T.J. and Miller, E.K. (2007) Top-down versus bottom-up control of attention in the prefrontal and posterior parietal cortices. Science. 315: 1860-1862  The Scientist’s “Hot Paper” for October 2009. View PDF »

Chanes et al (2013)  Journal of Neuroscience

Ibos et al (2013) Journal of Neuroscience

About the Author

The Miller Lab uses experimental and theoretical approaches to study the neural basis of the high-level cognitive functions that underlie complex goal-directed behavior.