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Neurobiological Correlates of TMS

  • Project Leaders: Doris Doudet
  • Institutions: University of British Columbia (UBC)
  • Budget: $935695
  • Program/Competition: Partner Programs
  • Genome Centre(s): Genome British Columbia
  • Fiscal Year: 2015
  • Status: Closed

Noninvasive brain stimulation is gaining acceptance as an alternate therapy for an increasing number of disorders, including major depression, schizophrenia, stroke and Parkinson’s disease. A form of noninvasive brain stimulation called transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is less invasive and safer as compared to other brain stimulation therapies; however, lack of knowledge of its basic mode(s) of action impairs the development of better, more effective stimulation paradigms. Indeed, little is known about 1) how TMS affects brain cells and chemistry, 2) what impact it has on neurons, and 3) how its use alters the major sensory-motor, cognitive and emotional networks that underpin behavior. Further, because we do not know how it modulates brain cell function in the healthy brain, it is impossible to refine its use for the treatment of neurological disorders. This project aims to create a generalizable framework that informs the understanding of the basic cellular processes induced by TMS, to assess cellular and molecular changes associated with TMS. The proposed study will provide important scientific data that will clarify both the functional and morphological consequences of TMS, and provide safety data to further refine the use of TMS as a therapeutic option.