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See detailResting-state EEG study of comatose patients: a connectivity and frequency analysis to find differences between vegetative and minimally conscious states.
Lehembre, Remy ULg; Bruno, Marie-Aurélie ULg; Vanhaudenhuyse, Audrey ULg et al

in Functional Neurology (2012), 27(1), 41-47

The aim of this study was to look for differences in the power spectra and in EEG connectivity measures between patients in the vegetative state (VS/UWS) and patients in the minimally conscious state (MCS ... [more ▼]

The aim of this study was to look for differences in the power spectra and in EEG connectivity measures between patients in the vegetative state (VS/UWS) and patients in the minimally conscious state (MCS). The EEG of 31 patients was recorded and analyzed. Power spectra were obtained using modern multitaper methods. Three connectivity measures (coherence, the imaginary part of coherency and the phase lag index) were computed. Of the 31 patients, 21 were diagnosed as MCS and 10 as VS/UWS using the Coma Recovery Scale-Revised (CRS-R). EEG power spectra revealed differences between the two conditions. The VS/UWS patients showed increased delta power but decreased alpha power compared with the MCS patients. Connectivity measures were correlated with the CRS-R diagnosis; patients in the VS/UWS had significantly lower connectivity than MCS patients in the theta and alpha bands. Standard EEG recorded in clinical conditions could be used as a tool to help the clinician in the diagnosis of disorders of consciousness. [less ▲]

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See detailCircadian preference modulates the neural substrate of conflict processing across the day
Schmidt, Christina ULg; Peigneux, Philippe ULg; Leclercq, Yves ULg et al

in PLoS ONE (2012), 7(1), 29658

Human morning and evening chronotypes differ in their preferred timing for sleep and wakefulness, as well as in optimal daytime periods to cope with cognitive challenges. Recent evidence suggests that ... [more ▼]

Human morning and evening chronotypes differ in their preferred timing for sleep and wakefulness, as well as in optimal daytime periods to cope with cognitive challenges. Recent evidence suggests that these preferences are not a simple by-product of socio-professional timing constraints, but can be driven by inter-individual differences in the expression of circadian and homeostatic sleep-wake promoting signals. Chronotypes thus constitute a unique tool to access the interplay between those processes under normally entrained day-night conditions, and to investigate how they impinge onto higher cognitive control processes. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), we assessed the influence of chronotype and time-of-day on conflict processing-related cerebral activity throughout a normal waking day. Sixteen morning and 15 evening types were recorded at two individually adapted time points (1.5 versus 10.5 hours spent awake) while performing the Stroop paradigm. Results show that interference-related hemodynamic responses are maintained or even increased in evening types from the subjective morning to the subjective evening in a set of brain areas playing a pivotal role in successful inhibitory functioning, whereas they decreased in morning types under the same conditions. Furthermore, during the evening hours, activity in a posterior hypothalamic region putatively involved in sleep-wake regulation correlated in a chronotype-specific manner with slow wave activity at the beginning of the night, an index of accumulated homeostatic sleep pressure. These results shed light into the cerebral mechanisms underlying inter-individual differences of higher-order cognitive state maintenance under normally entrained day-night conditions. [less ▲]

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See detailFASST- a FMRI Artefact rejection and Sleep Scoring Toolbox
Schrouff, Jessica ULg; Leclercq, Yves ULg; Noirhomme, Quentin ULg et al

Poster (2011, June 28)

We started writing the “fMRI artefact rejection and sleep scoring toolbox”, or “FASST”, to process our sleep EEG-fMRI data, that is, the simultaneous recording of electroencephalographic and functional ... [more ▼]

We started writing the “fMRI artefact rejection and sleep scoring toolbox”, or “FASST”, to process our sleep EEG-fMRI data, that is, the simultaneous recording of electroencephalographic and functional magnetic resonance imaging data acquired while a subject is asleep. FAST tackles three crucial issues typical of this kind of data: (1) data manipulation (viewing, comparing, chunking, etc.) of long continuous M/EEG recordings, (2) rejection of the fMRI-induced artefact in the EEG signal, and (3)manual sleep-scoring of the M/EEG recording. Currently, the toolbox can efficiently deal with these issues via a GUI, SPM8 batching system or handwritten script. The tools developed are, of course, also useful for other EEG applications, for example, involving simultaneous EEG-fMRI acquisition, continuous EEG eye-balling, and manipulation. Even though the toolbox was originally devised for EEG data, it will also gracefully handle MEG data without any problem. “FAST” is developed in Matlab as an add-on toolbox for SPM8 and, therefore, internally uses its SPM8-meeg data format. “FAST” is available for free, under the GNU-GPL. [less ▲]

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See detailfMRI Artefact Rejection and Sleep Scoring Toolbox
Leclercq, Yves ULg; Schrouff, Jessica ULg; Noirhomme, Quentin ULg et al

in Computational Intelligence & Neuroscience (2011)

This paper proposes a toolbox for handling large EEG/ MEG data sets, rejecting the artefact linked to joint fMRI-EEG acquisitions and scoring data sets.

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See detailWorking memory load affects chronotype- and time-of-day dependent cerebral activity modulations
Schmidt, Christina ULg; Peigneux, Philippe ULg; Leclercq, Yves ULg et al

in Journal of Sleep Research (2010), 19(Suppl. 2),

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See detailCharacterization of spatio-temporal organization of slow waves during human NREM sleep
Schrouff, Jessica ULg; Leclercq, Yves ULg; Foret, Ariane et al

Poster (2009, December 14)

Sleep is a behavior commonly observed in a large number of animal species. However, neuroscientists still poorly understand the meaning of this loss of consciousness absolutely needed for life. In the ... [more ▼]

Sleep is a behavior commonly observed in a large number of animal species. However, neuroscientists still poorly understand the meaning of this loss of consciousness absolutely needed for life. In the present work, we established different methods to characterize the Slow Wave Sleep most recognizable patterns: the Slow Waves (SWs). Since the anatomical structure of white matter tracts that connect various brain regions is not random and thus must constraint the propagation of waves (Hagmann et al., 2008), our basic hypothesis was that large white matter bundles would bias the propagation of SW along specific patterns, which could be identified in homogeneous clusters of waves. To investigate our hypothesis, SWs were detected automatically on the three first periods of SWS using an algorithm based on Massimini et al., 2004. They were then clustered using a two steps procedure involving a hierarchical clustering based on delay maps and a k-means clustering based on the SWs potential in a given time interval around the maximum power of the SW negative peak. To compute the relevance of the final clusters, a mathematical criterion was implemented as well as a visual check. Results of the multisubjects study showed that only bad quality and small clusters could be obtained, suggesting that there is no particular organization of SWs across the night and inforcing the hypothesis that SWs are local phenomena, each one decreasing the homeostatic pressure in only one specific area. [less ▲]

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See detailMultivariate analysis of cognitive profiles in Alzheimer's disease
Bastin, Christine ULg; Leclercq, Yves ULg; Collette, Fabienne ULg et al

in Proceedings of the 8th bi-annual Meeting of the Belgian Society for Neuroscience (2009)

The neuropsychological profiles of patients with early Alzheimer’s disease (AD) appear to be heterogeneous. In this study, we examined whether this heterogeneity corresponds to the existence of ... [more ▼]

The neuropsychological profiles of patients with early Alzheimer’s disease (AD) appear to be heterogeneous. In this study, we examined whether this heterogeneity corresponds to the existence of cognitively distinct subtypes of AD or rather to impairments along a continuum of performances in different cognitive domains. A large group of 187 AD patients recruited in the European project NEST-DD performed a neuropsychological battery. A factor analysis of cognitive performance identified three factors, which respectively reflected attentional/instrumental function, declarative memory and executive function. Three clustering methods were applied on the factor scores in order to explore the existence of separate groups. The clustering methods indicated that cognitive profiles among the patients were sufficiently variable to identify clusters, but there was continuity between clusters rather than clear-cut subtypes. Moreover, clusters corresponded to various combinations of relatively impaired and preserved functions, suggesting multidimensional distribution within a large population of patients. Finally, clusters of cognitive profiles were characterized by different levels of metabolism in brain regions commonly (but variably) involved or relatively preserved in AD. [less ▲]

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See detailRejection of pulse related artefact (PRA) from continuous electroencephalographic (EEG) time series recorded during functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) using constraint independent component analysis (cICA).
Leclercq, Yves ULg; Balteau, Evelyne ULg; Dang Vu, Thien Thanh ULg et al

in NeuroImage (2009), 44(3), 679-91

Rejection of the pulse related artefact (PRA) from electroencephalographic (EEG) time series recorded simultaneously with fMRI data is difficult, particularly during NREM sleep because of the similarities ... [more ▼]

Rejection of the pulse related artefact (PRA) from electroencephalographic (EEG) time series recorded simultaneously with fMRI data is difficult, particularly during NREM sleep because of the similarities between sleep slow waves and PRA, in both temporal and frequency domains and the need to work with non-averaged data. Here we introduce an algorithm based on constrained independent component analysis (cICA) for PRA removal. This method has several advantages: (1) automatic detection of the components corresponding to the PRA; (2) stability of the solution and (3) computational treatability. Using multichannel EEG recordings obtained in a 3 T MR scanner, with and without concomitant fMRI acquisition, we provide evidence for the sensitivity and specificity of the method in rejecting PRA in various sleep and waking conditions. [less ▲]

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See detailHomeostatic sleep pressure and responses to sustained attention in the suprachiasmatic area.
Schmidt, Christina ULg; Collette, Fabienne ULg; Leclercq, Yves ULg et al

in Science (2009), 324(5926), 516-9

Throughout the day, cognitive performance is under the combined influence of circadian processes and homeostatic sleep pressure. Some people perform best in the morning, whereas others are more alert in ... [more ▼]

Throughout the day, cognitive performance is under the combined influence of circadian processes and homeostatic sleep pressure. Some people perform best in the morning, whereas others are more alert in the evening. These chronotypes provide a unique way to study the effects of sleep-wake regulation on the cerebral mechanisms supporting cognition. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging in extreme chronotypes, we found that maintaining attention in the evening was associated with higher activity in evening than morning chronotypes in a region of the locus coeruleus and in a suprachiasmatic area (SCA) including the circadian master clock. Activity in the SCA decreased with increasing homeostatic sleep pressure. This result shows the direct influence of the homeostatic and circadian interaction on the neural activity underpinning human behavior. [less ▲]

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