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Clin Neurophysiol. 2016 Aug;127(8):2834-45. doi: 10.1016/j.clinph.2016.05.363. Epub 2016 Jun 8.

A meta-analysis of the effects of aging on motor cortex neurophysiology assessed by transcranial magnetic stimulation.

Author information

1
Temerty Centre for Therapeutic Brain Intervention, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, Toronto, Ontario M6J 1H4, Canada.
2
Temerty Centre for Therapeutic Brain Intervention, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, Toronto, Ontario M6J 1H4, Canada; Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario M5T 1R8, Canada; Campbell Family Mental Health Research Institute, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, Toronto, Ontario M5T 1R8, Canada.
3
Temerty Centre for Therapeutic Brain Intervention, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, Toronto, Ontario M6J 1H4, Canada; Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario M5T 1R8, Canada; Campbell Family Mental Health Research Institute, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, Toronto, Ontario M5T 1R8, Canada. Electronic address: daniel.blumberger@camh.ca.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is a non-invasive tool used for studying cortical excitability and plasticity in the human brain. This review aims to quantitatively synthesize the literature on age-related differences in cortical excitability and plasticity, examined by TMS.

METHODS:

A literature search was conducted using MEDLINE, Embase, and PsycINFO from 1980 to December 2015. We extracted studies with healthy old (50-89years) versus young (16-49years) individuals that utilized the following TMS measures: resting motor threshold (RMT), short-interval cortical inhibition (SICI), short-latency afferent inhibition (SAI), cortical silent period (CSP), intracortical facilitation (ICF), and paired associative stimulation (PAS).

RESULTS:

We found a significant increase in RMT (g=0.414, 95% confidence interval (CI) [0.284, 0.544], p<0.001), a significant decrease in SAI (g=0.778, 95% CI [0.478, 1.078], p<0.001), and a trending decrease in LTP-like plasticity (g=-0.528, 95% CI [-1.157, 0.100] p<0.1) with age.

CONCLUSIONS:

Our findings suggest an age-dependent reduction in cortical excitability and sensorimotor integration within the human motor cortex.

SIGNIFICANCE:

Alterations in the ability to regulate cortical excitability, sensorimotor integration and plasticity may underlie several age-related motor deficits.

KEYWORDS:

Aging; Cortical excitability; Cortical plasticity; Gamma-aminobutyric acid; Motor cortex; Transcranial magnetic stimulation

PMID:
27417060
PMCID:
PMC4956500
DOI:
10.1016/j.clinph.2016.05.363
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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