Transcutaneous spinal direct current stimulation modulates human corticospinal system excitability

Tommaso Bocci, Sara Marceglia, Maurizio Vergari, Valeria Cognetto, Filippo Cogiamanian, Ferdinando Sartucci, Alberto Priori

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

This study aimed to assess the effects of thoracic anodal and cathodal transcutaneous spinal direct current stimulation (tsDCS) on upper and lower limb corticospinal excitability. Although there have been studies assessing how thoracic tsDCS influences the spinal ascending tract and reflexes, none has assessed the effects of this technique over upper and lower limb corticomotor neuronal connections. In 14 healthy subjects we recorded motor evoked potentials (MEPs) elicited by transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) from abductor hallucis (AH) and hand abductor digiti minimi (ADM) muscles before (baseline) and at different time points (0 and 30 min) after anodal or cathodal tsDCS (2.5 mA, 20 min, T9-T11 level). In 8 of the 14 subjects we also tested the soleus H reflex and the F waves from AH and ADM before and after tsDCS. Both anodal and cathodal tsDCS left the upper limb MEPs and F wave unchanged. Conversely, while leaving lower limb H reflex unchanged, they oppositely affected lower limb MEPs: whereas anodal tsDCS increased resting motor threshold [(mean ± SE) 107.33 3.3% increase immediately after tsDCS and 108.37 ± 3.2% increase 30 min after tsDCS compared with baseline] and had no effects on MEP area and latency, cathodal tsDCS increased MEP area (139.71 ± 12.9% increase immediately after tsDCS and 132.74 ± 22.0% increase 30 min after tsDCS compared with baseline) without affecting resting motor threshold and MEP latency. Our results show that tsDCS induces polarity-specific changes in corticospinal excitability that last for >30 min after tsDCS offset and selectively affect responses in lower limb muscles innervated by lumbar and sacral motor neurons.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)440-446
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Neurophysiology
Volume114
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 29 2015

Fingerprint

Motor Evoked Potentials
Lower Extremity
H-Reflex
Thorax
Muscles
Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation
Motor Neurons
Upper Extremity
Reflex
Healthy Volunteers
Hand

Keywords

  • Corticospinal system
  • Direct current stimulation
  • Motor potentials
  • Spinal cord
  • Spinal cord stimulation
  • Transcranial direct current stimulation
  • Transcranial magnetic stimulation
  • Transcutaneous spinal direct current stimulation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Neuroscience(all)

Cite this

Transcutaneous spinal direct current stimulation modulates human corticospinal system excitability. / Bocci, Tommaso; Marceglia, Sara; Vergari, Maurizio; Cognetto, Valeria; Cogiamanian, Filippo; Sartucci, Ferdinando; Priori, Alberto.

In: Journal of Neurophysiology, Vol. 114, No. 1, 29.04.2015, p. 440-446.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Bocci, Tommaso ; Marceglia, Sara ; Vergari, Maurizio ; Cognetto, Valeria ; Cogiamanian, Filippo ; Sartucci, Ferdinando ; Priori, Alberto. / Transcutaneous spinal direct current stimulation modulates human corticospinal system excitability. In: Journal of Neurophysiology. 2015 ; Vol. 114, No. 1. pp. 440-446.
@article{be03fef5d7e341ca86dbfeef41e6b5a0,
title = "Transcutaneous spinal direct current stimulation modulates human corticospinal system excitability",
abstract = "This study aimed to assess the effects of thoracic anodal and cathodal transcutaneous spinal direct current stimulation (tsDCS) on upper and lower limb corticospinal excitability. Although there have been studies assessing how thoracic tsDCS influences the spinal ascending tract and reflexes, none has assessed the effects of this technique over upper and lower limb corticomotor neuronal connections. In 14 healthy subjects we recorded motor evoked potentials (MEPs) elicited by transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) from abductor hallucis (AH) and hand abductor digiti minimi (ADM) muscles before (baseline) and at different time points (0 and 30 min) after anodal or cathodal tsDCS (2.5 mA, 20 min, T9-T11 level). In 8 of the 14 subjects we also tested the soleus H reflex and the F waves from AH and ADM before and after tsDCS. Both anodal and cathodal tsDCS left the upper limb MEPs and F wave unchanged. Conversely, while leaving lower limb H reflex unchanged, they oppositely affected lower limb MEPs: whereas anodal tsDCS increased resting motor threshold [(mean ± SE) 107.33 3.3{\%} increase immediately after tsDCS and 108.37 ± 3.2{\%} increase 30 min after tsDCS compared with baseline] and had no effects on MEP area and latency, cathodal tsDCS increased MEP area (139.71 ± 12.9{\%} increase immediately after tsDCS and 132.74 ± 22.0{\%} increase 30 min after tsDCS compared with baseline) without affecting resting motor threshold and MEP latency. Our results show that tsDCS induces polarity-specific changes in corticospinal excitability that last for >30 min after tsDCS offset and selectively affect responses in lower limb muscles innervated by lumbar and sacral motor neurons.",
keywords = "Corticospinal system, Direct current stimulation, Motor potentials, Spinal cord, Spinal cord stimulation, Transcranial direct current stimulation, Transcranial magnetic stimulation, Transcutaneous spinal direct current stimulation",
author = "Tommaso Bocci and Sara Marceglia and Maurizio Vergari and Valeria Cognetto and Filippo Cogiamanian and Ferdinando Sartucci and Alberto Priori",
year = "2015",
month = "4",
day = "29",
doi = "10.1152/jn.00490.2014",
language = "English",
volume = "114",
pages = "440--446",
journal = "Journal of Neurophysiology",
issn = "0022-3077",
publisher = "American Physiological Society",
number = "1",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Transcutaneous spinal direct current stimulation modulates human corticospinal system excitability

AU - Bocci, Tommaso

AU - Marceglia, Sara

AU - Vergari, Maurizio

AU - Cognetto, Valeria

AU - Cogiamanian, Filippo

AU - Sartucci, Ferdinando

AU - Priori, Alberto

PY - 2015/4/29

Y1 - 2015/4/29

N2 - This study aimed to assess the effects of thoracic anodal and cathodal transcutaneous spinal direct current stimulation (tsDCS) on upper and lower limb corticospinal excitability. Although there have been studies assessing how thoracic tsDCS influences the spinal ascending tract and reflexes, none has assessed the effects of this technique over upper and lower limb corticomotor neuronal connections. In 14 healthy subjects we recorded motor evoked potentials (MEPs) elicited by transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) from abductor hallucis (AH) and hand abductor digiti minimi (ADM) muscles before (baseline) and at different time points (0 and 30 min) after anodal or cathodal tsDCS (2.5 mA, 20 min, T9-T11 level). In 8 of the 14 subjects we also tested the soleus H reflex and the F waves from AH and ADM before and after tsDCS. Both anodal and cathodal tsDCS left the upper limb MEPs and F wave unchanged. Conversely, while leaving lower limb H reflex unchanged, they oppositely affected lower limb MEPs: whereas anodal tsDCS increased resting motor threshold [(mean ± SE) 107.33 3.3% increase immediately after tsDCS and 108.37 ± 3.2% increase 30 min after tsDCS compared with baseline] and had no effects on MEP area and latency, cathodal tsDCS increased MEP area (139.71 ± 12.9% increase immediately after tsDCS and 132.74 ± 22.0% increase 30 min after tsDCS compared with baseline) without affecting resting motor threshold and MEP latency. Our results show that tsDCS induces polarity-specific changes in corticospinal excitability that last for >30 min after tsDCS offset and selectively affect responses in lower limb muscles innervated by lumbar and sacral motor neurons.

AB - This study aimed to assess the effects of thoracic anodal and cathodal transcutaneous spinal direct current stimulation (tsDCS) on upper and lower limb corticospinal excitability. Although there have been studies assessing how thoracic tsDCS influences the spinal ascending tract and reflexes, none has assessed the effects of this technique over upper and lower limb corticomotor neuronal connections. In 14 healthy subjects we recorded motor evoked potentials (MEPs) elicited by transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) from abductor hallucis (AH) and hand abductor digiti minimi (ADM) muscles before (baseline) and at different time points (0 and 30 min) after anodal or cathodal tsDCS (2.5 mA, 20 min, T9-T11 level). In 8 of the 14 subjects we also tested the soleus H reflex and the F waves from AH and ADM before and after tsDCS. Both anodal and cathodal tsDCS left the upper limb MEPs and F wave unchanged. Conversely, while leaving lower limb H reflex unchanged, they oppositely affected lower limb MEPs: whereas anodal tsDCS increased resting motor threshold [(mean ± SE) 107.33 3.3% increase immediately after tsDCS and 108.37 ± 3.2% increase 30 min after tsDCS compared with baseline] and had no effects on MEP area and latency, cathodal tsDCS increased MEP area (139.71 ± 12.9% increase immediately after tsDCS and 132.74 ± 22.0% increase 30 min after tsDCS compared with baseline) without affecting resting motor threshold and MEP latency. Our results show that tsDCS induces polarity-specific changes in corticospinal excitability that last for >30 min after tsDCS offset and selectively affect responses in lower limb muscles innervated by lumbar and sacral motor neurons.

KW - Corticospinal system

KW - Direct current stimulation

KW - Motor potentials

KW - Spinal cord

KW - Spinal cord stimulation

KW - Transcranial direct current stimulation

KW - Transcranial magnetic stimulation

KW - Transcutaneous spinal direct current stimulation

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84937698570&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84937698570&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1152/jn.00490.2014

DO - 10.1152/jn.00490.2014

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:84937698570

VL - 114

SP - 440

EP - 446

JO - Journal of Neurophysiology

JF - Journal of Neurophysiology

SN - 0022-3077

IS - 1

ER -