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Behavioral and electrophysiological effects of transcranial direct current stimulation of the parietal cortex in a visuo-spatial working memory task.

Heimrath K, Sandmann P, Becke A, Müller NG, Zaehle T - Front Psychiatry (2012)

Bottom Line: The results showed that tDCS modulated WM performance and its underlying electrophysiological brain activity in a polarity-specific way.This result can be considered an important step toward a better understanding of the mechanisms involved in tDCS-induced modulations of cognitive processing.This is of particular importance for the application of electrical brain stimulation as a therapeutic treatment of neuropsychiatric deficits in clinical populations.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Section of Neuropsychology, Department of Neurology, Otto-von-Guericke University Magdeburg Magdeburg, Germany.

ABSTRACT
Impairments of working memory (WM) performance are frequent concomitant symptoms in several psychiatric and neurologic diseases. Despite the great advance in treating the reduced WM abilities in patients suffering from, e.g., Parkinson's and Alzheimer's disease by means of transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS), the exact neurophysiological underpinning subserving these therapeutic tDCS-effects are still unknown. In the present study we investigated the impact of tDCS on performance in a visuo-spatial WM task and its underlying neural activity. In three experimental sessions, participants performed a delayed matching-to-sample WM task after sham, anodal, and cathodal tDCS over the right parietal cortex. The results showed that tDCS modulated WM performance and its underlying electrophysiological brain activity in a polarity-specific way. Parietal tDCS altered event-related potentials and oscillatory power in the alpha band at posterior electrode sites. The present study demonstrates that posterior tDCS can alter visuo-spatial WM performance by modulating the underlying neural activity. This result can be considered an important step toward a better understanding of the mechanisms involved in tDCS-induced modulations of cognitive processing. This is of particular importance for the application of electrical brain stimulation as a therapeutic treatment of neuropsychiatric deficits in clinical populations.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Transcranial direct current stimulation effect on ERP amplitudes: Bar plots show ERP amplitudes at electrodes P3, P4, Pz, O1, and O2 for different conditions (sham, anodal, and cathodal) and the attended hemifield (left, right).
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Figure 4: Transcranial direct current stimulation effect on ERP amplitudes: Bar plots show ERP amplitudes at electrodes P3, P4, Pz, O1, and O2 for different conditions (sham, anodal, and cathodal) and the attended hemifield (left, right).

Mentions: For the amplitude of the N2 ERP component the 3 × 2 repeated measurement ANOVAs with the factors tDCS (sham, anodal, cathodal) and hemifield (left, right) revealed a significant main effect of the factor tDCS at electrodes P3 [F(1.9, 22.2) = 4.64, P < 0.05], and Pz [F(1.9, 21.4) = 5.29, P < 0.05], and a statistical trend at electrode P4 [F(1.5, 16.9) = 2.66, P = 0.1]. Anodal tDCS reduced the N2 amplitude as compared to sham and cathodal stimulation regardless of the attended hemifield in the bilateral posterior cortex (cf. Figure 4).


Behavioral and electrophysiological effects of transcranial direct current stimulation of the parietal cortex in a visuo-spatial working memory task.

Heimrath K, Sandmann P, Becke A, Müller NG, Zaehle T - Front Psychiatry (2012)

Transcranial direct current stimulation effect on ERP amplitudes: Bar plots show ERP amplitudes at electrodes P3, P4, Pz, O1, and O2 for different conditions (sham, anodal, and cathodal) and the attended hemifield (left, right).
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3378949&req=5

Figure 4: Transcranial direct current stimulation effect on ERP amplitudes: Bar plots show ERP amplitudes at electrodes P3, P4, Pz, O1, and O2 for different conditions (sham, anodal, and cathodal) and the attended hemifield (left, right).
Mentions: For the amplitude of the N2 ERP component the 3 × 2 repeated measurement ANOVAs with the factors tDCS (sham, anodal, cathodal) and hemifield (left, right) revealed a significant main effect of the factor tDCS at electrodes P3 [F(1.9, 22.2) = 4.64, P < 0.05], and Pz [F(1.9, 21.4) = 5.29, P < 0.05], and a statistical trend at electrode P4 [F(1.5, 16.9) = 2.66, P = 0.1]. Anodal tDCS reduced the N2 amplitude as compared to sham and cathodal stimulation regardless of the attended hemifield in the bilateral posterior cortex (cf. Figure 4).

Bottom Line: The results showed that tDCS modulated WM performance and its underlying electrophysiological brain activity in a polarity-specific way.This result can be considered an important step toward a better understanding of the mechanisms involved in tDCS-induced modulations of cognitive processing.This is of particular importance for the application of electrical brain stimulation as a therapeutic treatment of neuropsychiatric deficits in clinical populations.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Section of Neuropsychology, Department of Neurology, Otto-von-Guericke University Magdeburg Magdeburg, Germany.

ABSTRACT
Impairments of working memory (WM) performance are frequent concomitant symptoms in several psychiatric and neurologic diseases. Despite the great advance in treating the reduced WM abilities in patients suffering from, e.g., Parkinson's and Alzheimer's disease by means of transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS), the exact neurophysiological underpinning subserving these therapeutic tDCS-effects are still unknown. In the present study we investigated the impact of tDCS on performance in a visuo-spatial WM task and its underlying neural activity. In three experimental sessions, participants performed a delayed matching-to-sample WM task after sham, anodal, and cathodal tDCS over the right parietal cortex. The results showed that tDCS modulated WM performance and its underlying electrophysiological brain activity in a polarity-specific way. Parietal tDCS altered event-related potentials and oscillatory power in the alpha band at posterior electrode sites. The present study demonstrates that posterior tDCS can alter visuo-spatial WM performance by modulating the underlying neural activity. This result can be considered an important step toward a better understanding of the mechanisms involved in tDCS-induced modulations of cognitive processing. This is of particular importance for the application of electrical brain stimulation as a therapeutic treatment of neuropsychiatric deficits in clinical populations.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus