Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation-induced changes in sensorimotor coupling parallel improvements of somatosensation in humans
Pleger, Burkhard × Blankenburg, Felix Bestmann, Sven Ruff, Christian C. Wiech, Katja Stephan, Klaas E. Friston, Karl J. Dolan, Raymond J. #
Journal of neuroscience vol:26 issue:7 pages:1945-1952
Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) is an established technique for non-invasive stimulation of human cortex. Although studies have shown an influence of rTMS on single cortical regions and on simple behavioral response patterns, its influences on the dynamics of task-related activity in cortical networks have not been characterized. We provide such a characterization by showing that 5 Hz rTMS over primary somatosensory cortex ( SI) induces a reconfiguration of activity patterns in a sensorimotor network, comprising the stimulated region and ipsilateral primary motor cortex ( MI). These plastic changes endure for up to 120 min and are correlated with behavioral improvement in discrimination. Dynamic causal modeling showed that this reconfiguration could be explained by an rTMS-induced increase in SI excitability (self-connection) and an increase in the effective connectivity from SI to MI. Thus, our data demonstrate that rTMS can temporarily induce behaviorally relevant reorganization within a complex cortical network underlying human somatosensory experience.