The Involvement of Endogenous Neural Oscillations in the Processing of Rhythmic Input: More Than a Regular Repetition of Evoked Neural Responses

06 Jun 2018

It is undisputed that presenting a rhythmic stimulus leads to a measurable brain response that follows the rhythmic structure of this stimulus. What is still debated, however, is the question whether this brain response exclusively reflects a regular repetition of evoked responses, or whether it also includes entrained oscillatory activity. Here we systematically present evidence in favour of an involvement of entrained neural oscillations in the processing of rhythmic input while critically pointing out which questions still need to be addressed before this evidence could be considered conclusive. In this context, we also explicitly discuss the potential functional role of such entrained oscillations, suggesting that these stimulus-aligned oscillations reflect, and serve as, predictive processes, an idea often only implicitly assumed in the literature.