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Several studies have confirmed that subthalamic and pallidal local field potential activity in the beta frequency band (13-30 Hz) is exaggerated in untreated patients with Parkinson's disease (PD) and is suppressed by dopaminergic treatment. This particular spectral pattern differs from that in patients with dystonia in whom pallidal activity is prominent at low frequencies (<12 Hz). Here we demonstrate that tetrabenazine induced monoamine depletion and dopamine blockade is associated with increased activity in the low beta band (13-20 Hz) in the internal pallidum of patients with dystonia. Beta activity was elevated in six patients treated with tetrabenazine compared to six patients in whom this drug was not used. Our findings suggest that beta activity is enhanced in the chronically dopamine-depleted and blocked state irrespective of the underlying pathology, consistent with the idea that excessive synchrony in the beta band is directly related to dopaminergic hypofunction, rather than some degenerative disease-specific attribute of Parkinson's disease.

Original publication




Journal article


Exp Neurol

Publication Date





140 - 143


Adrenergic Uptake Inhibitors, Adult, Beta Rhythm, Deep Brain Stimulation, Dystonia, Globus Pallidus, Humans, Middle Aged, Signal Processing, Computer-Assisted, Tetrabenazine