Sedative drugs modulate the neuronal activity in the subthalamic nucleus of parkinsonian patients

Amit Benady, Sean Zadik, Dan Eimerl, Sami Heymann, Hagai Bergman, Zvi Israel, Aeyal Raz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Microelectrode recording (MER) is often used to identify electrode location which is critical for the success of deep brain stimulation (DBS) treatment of Parkinson’s disease. The usage of anesthesia and its’ impact on MER quality and electrode placement is controversial. We recorded neuronal activity at a single depth inside the Subthalamic Nucleus (STN) before, during, and after remifentanil infusion. The root mean square (RMS) of the 250–6000 Hz band-passed signal was used to evaluate the regional spiking activity, the power spectrum to evaluate the oscillatory activity and the coherence to evaluate synchrony between two microelectrodes. We compare those to new frequency domain (spectral) analysis of previously obtained data during propofol sedation. Results showed Remifentanil decreased the normalized RMS by 9% (P < 0.001), a smaller decrease compared to propofol. Regarding the beta range oscillatory activity, remifentanil depressed oscillations (drop from 25 to 5% of oscillatory electrodes), while propofol did not (increase from 33.3 to 41.7% of oscillatory electrodes). In the cases of simultaneously recorded oscillatory electrodes, propofol did not change the synchronization while remifentanil depressed it. In conclusion, remifentanil interferes with the identification of the dorsolateral oscillatory region, whereas propofol interferes with RMS identification of the STN borders. Thus, both have undesired effect during the MER procedure. Trial registration: NCT00355927 and NCT00588926.

Original languageEnglish
Article number14536
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
StatePublished - 3 Sep 2020
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020, The Author(s).


Supported in part by the Parkinson at the Hadassah (PATH) Committee of London, UK to Z.I. and the United States—Israel Binational Science Foundation (BSF) Grant 201,732 to AR.

FundersFunder number
United States-Israel Binational Science Foundation201,732


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