Frequency-dependent changes in cerebral metabolic rate of oxygen during activation of human visual cortex

Manouchehr S. Vafaee, Ernst Meyer, Sean Marrett, T. Paus, Alan C. Evans, Albert Gjedde

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

83 Scopus citations


To test the hypothesis that brain oxidative metabolism is significantly increased upon adequate stimulation, we varied the presentation of a visual stimulus to determine the frequency at which the metabolic response would be at maximum. The authors measured regional CMR(O2) in 12 healthy normal volunteers with the ECAT EXACT HR+ (CTI/Siemens, Knoxville, TN, U.S.A.) three-dimensional whole-body positron emission tomograph (PET). In seven successive activating conditions, subjects viewed a yellow-blue annular checkerboard reversing its contrast at frequencies of 0, 1, 4, 8, 16, 32, and 50 Hz. Stimulation began 4 minutes before and continued throughout the 3- minute dynamic scan. In the baseline condition, the subjects began fixating a cross hair 30 seconds before the scan and continued to do so for the duration of the 3-minute scan. At the start of each scan, the subjects inhaled 20 mCi of 15O-O2 in a single breath. The CMR(O2) value was calculated using a two- compartment, weighted integration method. Normalized PET images were averaged across subjects and coregistered with the subjects' magnetic resonance imaging in stereotaxic space. Mean subtracted image volumes (activation minus baseline) of CMR(O2) then were obtained and converted to z statistic volumes. The authors found a statistically significant focal change of CMR(O2) in the striate cortex (x = 9; y = -89; z = -1) that reached a maximum at 4 Hz and dropped off sharply at higher stimulus frequencies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)272-277
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Cerebral Blood Flow and Metabolism
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1999
Externally publishedYes


  • CMR(O2)
  • Positron emission tomography
  • Visual cortex

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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