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Fiberless, Multi-Channel fNIRS-EEG System Based on Silicon Photomultipliers: Towards Sensitive and Ecological Mapping of Brain Activity and Neurovascular Coupling

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Department of Neuroscience, Imaging and Clinical Sciences, Institute for Advanced Biomedical Technologies, University G. D’Annunzio of Chieti-Pescara, Via Luigi Polacchi 13, 66100 Chieti, Italy
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Department of Energy, Engineering and Mathematical Models, University of Palermo, Viale delle Scienze 9, 90128 Palermo, Italy
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ADG R&D, STMicroelectronics s.r.l., Stradale Primosole 50, 95121 Catania, Italy
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Guger Technologies OG, Herbersteinstrasse 60, 8020 Graz, Austria
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g.tec Medical Engineering Spain S.L., Calle Plom 5-7, 08038 Barcelona, Spain
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
This paper is an extended version of the conference paper: Chiarelli, A.M.; Perpetuini, D.; Greco, G.; Mistretta, L.; Rizzo, R.; Vinciguerra, V.; Romeo, M.F.; Merla, A.; Fallica, P.G.; Giaconia, G.C. Wearable, Fiber-less, Multi-Channel System for Continuous Wave Functional Near Infrared Spectroscopy Based on Silicon Photomultipliers Detectors and Lock-In Amplification. In Proceedings of the 2019 41st Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (EMBC), Berlin, Germany, 23–27 July 2019; pp. 60–66.
Sensors 2020, 20(10), 2831; https://doi.org/10.3390/s20102831
Received: 7 April 2020 / Revised: 8 May 2020 / Accepted: 13 May 2020 / Published: 16 May 2020
(This article belongs to the Section Biomedical Sensors)
Portable neuroimaging technologies can be employed for long-term monitoring of neurophysiological and neuropathological states. Functional Near-Infrared Spectroscopy (fNIRS) and Electroencephalography (EEG) are highly suited for such a purpose. Their multimodal integration allows the evaluation of hemodynamic and electrical brain activity together with neurovascular coupling. An innovative fNIRS-EEG system is here presented. The system integrated a novel continuous-wave fNIRS component and a modified commercial EEG device. fNIRS probing relied on fiberless technology based on light emitting diodes and silicon photomultipliers (SiPMs). SiPMs are sensitive semiconductor detectors, whose large detection area maximizes photon harvesting from the scalp and overcomes limitations of fiberless technology. To optimize the signal-to-noise ratio and avoid fNIRS-EEG interference, a digital lock-in was implemented for fNIRS signal acquisition. A benchtop characterization of the fNIRS component showed its high performances with a noise equivalent power below 1 pW. Moreover, the fNIRS-EEG device was tested in vivo during tasks stimulating visual, motor and pre-frontal cortices. Finally, the capabilities to perform ecological recordings were assessed in clinical settings on one Alzheimer’s Disease patient during long-lasting cognitive tests. The system can pave the way to portable technologies for accurate evaluation of multimodal brain activity, allowing their extensive employment in ecological environments and clinical practice. View Full-Text
Keywords: functional near infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS); electroencephalography (EEG); multimodal neuroimaging; silicon photomultipliers; neurovascular coupling; clinical brain monitoring functional near infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS); electroencephalography (EEG); multimodal neuroimaging; silicon photomultipliers; neurovascular coupling; clinical brain monitoring
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MDPI and ACS Style

Chiarelli, A.M.; Perpetuini, D.; Croce, P.; Greco, G.; Mistretta, L.; Rizzo, R.; Vinciguerra, V.; Romeo, M.F.; Zappasodi, F.; Merla, A.; Fallica, P.G.; Edlinger, G.; Ortner, R.; Giaconia, G.C. Fiberless, Multi-Channel fNIRS-EEG System Based on Silicon Photomultipliers: Towards Sensitive and Ecological Mapping of Brain Activity and Neurovascular Coupling. Sensors 2020, 20, 2831. https://doi.org/10.3390/s20102831

AMA Style

Chiarelli AM, Perpetuini D, Croce P, Greco G, Mistretta L, Rizzo R, Vinciguerra V, Romeo MF, Zappasodi F, Merla A, Fallica PG, Edlinger G, Ortner R, Giaconia GC. Fiberless, Multi-Channel fNIRS-EEG System Based on Silicon Photomultipliers: Towards Sensitive and Ecological Mapping of Brain Activity and Neurovascular Coupling. Sensors. 2020; 20(10):2831. https://doi.org/10.3390/s20102831

Chicago/Turabian Style

Chiarelli, Antonio M., David Perpetuini, Pierpaolo Croce, Giuseppe Greco, Leonardo Mistretta, Raimondo Rizzo, Vincenzo Vinciguerra, Mario F. Romeo, Filippo Zappasodi, Arcangelo Merla, Pier G. Fallica, Günter Edlinger, Rupert Ortner, and Giuseppe C. Giaconia 2020. "Fiberless, Multi-Channel fNIRS-EEG System Based on Silicon Photomultipliers: Towards Sensitive and Ecological Mapping of Brain Activity and Neurovascular Coupling" Sensors 20, no. 10: 2831. https://doi.org/10.3390/s20102831

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