Research Topic

Non-invasive brain stimulation and plasticity changes in aging

  • Submission closed.

About this Research Topic

As populations experience a rapid growth of its older segments, a major neuroscientific research goal is to increase our knowledge about mechanisms that sustain healthy brain aging, as well as to promote initiatives to prevent neuropsychiatric age-associated disorders. A body of investigations combining ...

As populations experience a rapid growth of its older segments, a major neuroscientific research goal is to increase our knowledge about mechanisms that sustain healthy brain aging, as well as to promote initiatives to prevent neuropsychiatric age-associated disorders. A body of investigations combining behavioral paradigms, neuroimaging and electrophysiological techniques have helped to characterize how brain structure and function are modified by physiological age or age-related neuropathological processes. The mechanisms underlying those changes can be conceptualized within the broad field of “brain plasticity”: here, we particularly refer to the dynamic intrinsic, as well as to life-long adaptive capabilities of the brain, which however are highly dependent by individual differences. Non-invasive brain stimulation (NIBS) techniques such as transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) or transcranial alternating current stimulation (tACS) allow to assess or modulate neuroplastic phenomena in an experimentally controlled manner. For example NIBS may be used to directly induce temporary modifications (increases or decreases) of cortical excitability or connectivity of brain networks, and then investigate if they translate to behavioral or cognitive changes. Likewise, NIBS can be used to quantify the effects of behavioral training programs or pharmacological manipulations on plastic remodeling of critical brain circuits, providing mechanistic, often causal, evidences of therapeutic interventions. While previous studies integrating NIBS with behavioral and neuroimaging paradigms have been increasingly reported in the scientific literature, its specific application in elder populations is still scarce and many unanswered questions remain. For example, how brain responses to NIBS, as captured by functional neuroimaging or electrophysiology, differ between young and elder populations? Can NIBS alone or in combination with behavioral interventions facilitate training-induced plasticity and translate to enhancements of performance in elders in a reliable manner (and/or delay age-associated cognitive decline)? To what extend baseline functional and structural brain characteristics modulate the impact of NIBS in aging? What are the most relevant individual variables (i.e. genetic variations, pharmacological agents, presence of disease biomarkers, cognitive reserve / educational status) influencing NIBS studies of brain plasticity in elders? This topic is aimed to shed new light in how NIBS can be used to better understand and optimize brain plasticity mechanisms in aging.


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

Recent Articles

Loading..

About Frontiers Research Topics

With their unique mixes of varied contributions from Original Research to Review Articles, Research Topics unify the most influential researchers, the latest key findings and historical advances in a hot research area! Find out more on how to host your own Frontiers Research Topic or contribute to one as an author.

Topic Editors

Loading..

Submission Deadlines

Submission closed.

Participating Journals

Loading..

Topic Editors

Loading..

Submission Deadlines

Submission closed.

Participating Journals

Loading..
Loading..

total views article views article downloads topic views

}
 
Top countries
Top referring sites
Loading..

Comments

Loading..

Add a comment

Add comment
Back to top