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Publication Detail
Interrogating cortical function with transcranial magnetic stimulation: Insights from neurodegenerative disease and stroke
  • Publication Type:
    Journal article
  • Publication Sub Type:
    Article
  • Authors:
    Agarwal S, Koch G, Hillis AE, Huynh W, Ward NS, Vucic S, Kiernan MC
  • Publication date:
    04/06/2018
  • Journal:
    Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry
  • Status:
    Accepted
  • Print ISSN:
    0022-3050
Abstract
© Article author(s) (or their employer(s) unless otherwise stated in the text of the article) 2018. All rights reserved. No commercial use is permitted unless otherwise expressly granted. Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is an accessible, non-invasive technique to study cortical function in vivo. TMS studies have provided important pathophysiological insights across a range of neurodegenerative disorders and enhanced our understanding of brain reorganisation after stroke. In neurodegenerative disease, TMS has provided novel insights into the function of cortical output cells and the related intracortical interneuronal networks. Characterisation of cortical hyperexcitability in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and altered motor cortical function in frontotemporal dementia, demonstration of cholinergic deficits in Alzheimer's disease and P arkinson's disease are key examples where TMS has led to advances in understanding of disease pathophysiology and potential mechanisms of propagation, with the potential for diagnostic applications. In stroke, TMS methodology has facilitated the understanding of cortical reorganisation that underlie functional recovery. These insights are critical to the development of effective and targeted rehabilitation strategies in stroke. The present review will provide an overview of cortical function measures obtained using TMS and how such measures may provide insight into brain function. Through an improved understanding of cortical function across a range of neurodegenerative disorders, and identification of changes in neural structure and function associated with stroke that underlie clinical recovery, more targeted therapeutic approaches may now be developed in an evolving era of precision medicine.
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