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Determination of anodal tDCS intensity threshold for reversal of corticospinal excitability: an investigation for induction of counter-regulatory mechanisms

journal contribution
posted on 06.11.2020, 00:34 by M Hassanzahraee, MA Nitsche, Maryam Zoghi, S Jaberzadeh
© 2020, The Author(s). Transcranial direct current stimulation is applied to modulate activity, and excitability of the brain. Basically, LTP-like plasticity is induced when anodal tDCS (a-tDCS) is applied over the primary motor cortex. However, it has been shown that specific parameters of a-tDCS can induce a plasticity reversal. We aimed to systematically assess the intensity threshold for reversal of the direction of plasticity induced by a-tDCS, monitored by corticospinal excitability (CSE), and explored mechanisms regulating this reversal. Fifteen healthy participants received a-tDCS in pseudo-random order for 26 min with four intensities of 0.3, 0.7, 1, and 1.5 mA. To measure CSE changes, single-pulse TMS was applied over the left M1, and motor evoked potentials of a contralateral hand muscle were recorded prior to a-tDCS, immediately and 30-min post-intervention. Paired-pulse TMS was used to evaluate intracortical excitation and inhibition. CSE increased significantly following a-tDCS with an intensity of 0.7 mA; however, the expected effect decreased and even reversed at intensities of 1 and 1.5 mA. ICF was significantly increased while SICI and LICI decreased at 0.7 mA. On the other hand, a significant decrease of ICF, but SICI and LICI enhancement was observed at intensities of 1, and 1.5 mA. The present findings show an intensity threshold of ≥ 1 mA for 26 min a-tDCS to reverse LTP- into LTD-like plasticity. It is suggested that increasing stimulation intensity, with constant stimulation duration, activates counter-regulatory mechanisms to prevent excessive brain excitation. Therefore, stimulation intensity and plasticity induced by a-tDCS might non-linearly correlate in scenarios with prolonged stimulation duration.

History

Publication Date

01/01/2020

Journal

Scientific Reports

Volume

10

Issue

1

Article Number

16108

Pagination

9p.

Publisher

Springer Nature

ISSN

2045-2322

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The Author reserves all moral rights over the deposited text and must be credited if any re-use occurs. Documents deposited in OPAL are the Open Access versions of outputs published elsewhere. Changes resulting from the publishing process may therefore not be reflected in this document. The final published version may be obtained via the publisher’s DOI. Please note that additional copyright and access restrictions may apply to the published version.

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