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Electrified brains: Noninvasive brain stimulation and its relevance for the motor system

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In the past decades, noninvasive brain stimulation with electrical currents has become an emerging field in clinical neuroscience due to its capability to transiently modulate cortical excitability and cognitive or motor function. Diverse models of transcranial brain stimulation utilizing direct currents ...

In the past decades, noninvasive brain stimulation with electrical currents has become an emerging field in clinical neuroscience due to its capability to transiently modulate cortical excitability and cognitive or motor function. Diverse models of transcranial brain stimulation utilizing direct currents (DC), alternating currents (AC) or random noise (RN) are used in humans. More recently, animal models allowed for a significant progress in understanding the mechanisms underlying these types of stimulation. With regard to the motor system, application of anodal transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) seems to benefit motor performance and motor learning. Motor skill learning becomes fundamental in the case of neurological diseases such as stroke or traumatic brain injury, as recovering full motor function is a central goal of neurorehabilitative treatments. Thus, it is an important question whether and how therapeutic interventions including brain stimulation and motor training could further enhance this process.

Review articles and original research using animal or human models and computational approaches that explore the mechanisms and perspectives of noninvasive electrical brain stimulation of the motor system in health and neurological diseases can be proposed. We aim at providing an updated review as well at creating a platform that facilitates discussions about this topic across scientific disciplines.


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