Biological Systems Engineering



Date of this Version



Appl. Sci. 2020, 10, 3381; doi:10.3390/app10103381


2020 by the authors


Functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) is an emerging technique in studying cerebral hemodynamics; however, consensus on the analysis methods and the clinical applications has yet to be established. In this study, we demonstrate the results of a pilot fNIRS study of cerebral hemodynamic response (HR) evoked by pneumotactile and sensorimotor stimuli on the dominant hand. Our goal is to find the optimal stimulus parameters to maximally evoke HR in the primary somatosensory and motor cortices. We use a pulsatile pneumatic array of 14 tactile cells that were attached to the glabrous surface of the dominant hand, with a patterned stimulus that resembles saltation at three distinct traverse velocities [10, 25, and 45 cm/s]. NIRS optodes (16 sources; 20 detectors) are bilaterally and symmetrically placed over the pre-and post-central gyri (M1 and S1). Our objective is to identify the extent to which cerebral HR can encode the velocity of the somatosensory and/or motor stimuli. We use common spatial pattern for feature extraction and regularized-discriminant analysis for classifying the fNIRS time series into velocity classes. The classification results demonstrate discriminatory features of the fNIRS signal from each distinct stimulus velocity. The results are inconclusive regarding the velocity which evokes the highest intensity of hemodynamic response.