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Brain stimulation, basic neural function and behavior

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Electric or magnetic brain stimulation can influence cognitive, affective or motor brain functions. Despite growing application in clinical settings, still little is known about the direct effects of electric brain stimulation on cellular brain physiology. Recently, novel methods have been developed that allow ...

Electric or magnetic brain stimulation can influence cognitive, affective or motor brain functions. Despite growing application in clinical settings, still little is known about the direct effects of electric brain stimulation on cellular brain physiology. Recently, novel methods have been developed that allow application of various forms of non-invasive brain stimulation (NIBS), e.g. transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) or transcranial electric stimulation (TES), during imaging of metabolic or neurophysiological brain signals reflecting basic neural functions. These imaging techniques allowing for "in vivo" assessment of the impact of NIBS on brain physiology include e.g. functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS), positron emission tomography (PET), and electro- or magnetoencephalography (E/MEG). This Research Topic aims at gathering the most recent research results of the leading laboratories shedding light on the immediate and long-lasting effects of NIBS on cellular brain physiology, and on the mechanisms underlying stimulation-dependent behavioral modifications. Review articles and original research investigating the impact of NIBS on basic neural functions, such as the generation of action potentials, synaptic transmission, biophysical and biochemical aspects of receptor activation, ionic channel functions, synaptic plasticity, intra and inter cell or glial-neuronal signaling and synaptic and dendritic integration, can be proposed. A better understanding of the effects of NIBS on cellular brain physiology and behavior will not only advance basic neuroscience, but might also lead to more effective stimulation protocols and treatment strategies for neurological and psychiatric disorders.


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