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August 1955

Electro-Ontogenesis of Cerebral ActivityForms of Neonatal Responses and Their Recurrence in Epileptic Discharges

Author Affiliations


From the EEG Laboratory, VA Neuropsychiatric Hospital and the Montefiore Hospital Institute of Research.

AMA Arch NeurPsych. 1955;74(2):186-202. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1955.02330140070014

As Witteridge41 noted in 1950, there is still a great discrepancy between the enormous literature on the electrical activity of the cerebral cortex and the little agreement on its interpretation. The difficulties in the interpretation of the normal (and abnormal) electroencephalogram (EEG) may spring in part from our attempt to understand the full complexity of adult activity without knowledge of ontogenetically earlier, simpler stages. Though we have systematic studies of the ontogenesis of the EEG in man (Lindsley*; Smith †; Henry,19 1944; Gibbs and Knott,17 1949; Grey Walter,18 1950; Gibbs and Gibbs,161953; Kellaway,241953; Melin,31 1953), there has been no systematic experimental study on laboratory animals. Instead, we have scattered reports dealing with some aspects of electro-ontogenesis, largely on the guinea pig and rabbit. The study reported here represents an attempt to describe the general trends of postnatal development of the electrical