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Brain Stimul. 2014 Mar-Apr;7(2):226-33. doi: 10.1016/j.brs.2013.11.003. Epub 2013 Nov 16.

Transcranial magnetic stimulation of the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex decreases cue-induced nicotine craving and EEG delta power.

Author information

1
Social, Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience (SCAN) Unit, Department of Basic Psychological Research and Research Methods, Faculty of Psychology, University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria. Electronic address: juergen.pripfl@univie.ac.at.
2
Social, Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience (SCAN) Unit, Department of Basic Psychological Research and Research Methods, Faculty of Psychology, University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria.
3
Social, Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience (SCAN) Unit, Department of Basic Psychological Research and Research Methods, Faculty of Psychology, University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria; Laboratory of Cognitive Neuroscience, Institute of Normal and Pathological Physiology, Slovak Academy of Sciences, Bratislava, Slovakia.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

TMS has high potential as smoking cessation treatment. However, the neural mechanisms underlying TMS induced reduction of tobacco craving remain unclear. Electroencephalographic (EEG) delta frequency has been associated with the activity of the dopaminergic brain reward system, which is crucial for nicotine induced effects, and decreases after nicotine admission in smokers.

OBJECTIVE:

The aim of this study was to investigate EEG delta power changes induced by hf rTMS of the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) in nicotine deprived smokers and it's relation to cue-induced nicotine craving.

METHODS:

Fourteen healthy smokers meeting ICD-10 criteria for tobacco addiction participated in this within-subject sham controlled study. Participants had to abstain from smoking 6 h before the experiment. Effects of high-frequency repetitive TMS (hf rTMS) (10 Hz) for verum (left DLPFC) and sham (vertex) stimulations on cue-induced nicotine craving and resting state EEG delta power were assessed before and three times within 40 min after rTMS.

RESULTS:

Both craving (P = 0.046) and EEG delta power (P = 0.048) were significantly lower after verum stimulation compared to sham stimulation across the whole post stimulation time period assessed. However, changes of craving ratings and delta power did not correlate.

CONCLUSION:

Hf rTMS applied to the left DLPFC reduces nicotine craving in short-term abstinent smokers. Changes in delta activity support the idea that stimulation induced effects are mediated by the dopaminergic brain reward system, which presumably plays a prominent, but probably not exclusive, role in this stimulation induced behavioral modulation, making this method a promising smoking cessation treatment candidate.

KEYWORDS:

Dorsolateral prefrontal cortex; Electroencephalography; Nicotine craving; Smoking cessation; Transcranial magnetic stimulation

PMID:
24468092
DOI:
10.1016/j.brs.2013.11.003
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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