Brain Topography

, Volume 27, Issue 4, pp 428–437 | Cite as

Scalp Current Density Mapping in the Analysis of Mismatch Negativity Paradigms

  • Marie-Hélène Giard
  • Julien Besle
  • Pierre-Emmanuel Aguera
  • Marie Gomot
  • Olivier Bertrand


MMN oddball paradigms are frequently used to assess auditory (dys)functions in clinical populations, or the influence of various factors (such as drugs and alcohol) on auditory processing. A widely used procedure is to compare the MMN responses between two groups of subjects (e.g. patients vs controls), or between experimental conditions in the same group. To correctly interpret these comparisons, it is important to take into account the multiple brain generators that produce the MMN response. To disentangle the different components of the MMN, we describe the advantages of scalp current density (SCD)—or surface Laplacian—computation for ERP analysis. We provide a short conceptual and mathematical description of SCDs, describe their properties, and illustrate with examples from published studies how they can benefit MMN analysis. We conclude with practical tips on how to correctly use and interpret SCDs in this context.


Mismatch negativity Scalp current density ERP mapping 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Marie-Hélène Giard
    • 1
    • 2
  • Julien Besle
    • 3
  • Pierre-Emmanuel Aguera
    • 1
    • 2
  • Marie Gomot
    • 4
  • Olivier Bertrand
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Brain Dynamics and Cognition Team, INSERM, U1028, CNRS, UMR5292CRNL, Lyon Neuroscience Research CenterLyonFrance
  2. 2.University Lyon 1LyonFrance
  3. 3.MRC Institute of Hearing ResearchNottinghamUK
  4. 4.UMR 930 Imaging and Brain, INSERMUniversité Francois Rabelais de ToursToursFrance

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