Effects of beta-band and gamma-band rhythmic stimulation on motor inhibition

Inge Leunissen, Manon Van Steenkiste, Kirstin-Friederike Heise, Thiago Santos Monteiro, Kyle Dunovan, Dante Mantini, James Coxon, Stephan Swinnen

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To investigate whether beta oscillations are causally related to motor inhibition, thirty-six participants underwent two concurrent transcranial alternating current stimulation (tACS) and electroencephalography (EEG) sessions during which either beta (20 Hz) or gamma (70 Hz) stimulation was applied while participants performed a stop-signal task. In addition, we acquired magnetic resonance images to simulate the electric field during tACS. 20 Hz stimulation targeted at the pre-supplementary motor area enhanced inhibition and increased beta oscillatory power around the time of the stop-signal in trials directly following stimulation. The increase in inhibition on stop trials followed a dose-response relationship with the strength of the individually simulated electric field. Computational modeling revealed that 20 and 70 Hz stimulation had opposite effects on the braking process. These results highlight that the effects of tACS are state-dependent and demonstrate that fronto-central beta activity is causally related to successful motor inhibition, supporting its use as a functional biomarker.

Original languageEnglish
Article number104338
Number of pages19
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 20 May 2022


  • Behavioral neuroscience
  • Biological sciences
  • Neuroscience
  • Sensory neuroscience

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