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Lasers Surg Med. 2013 Dec;45(10):648-53. doi: 10.1002/lsm.22190. Epub 2013 Oct 17.

Transcranial application of near-infrared low-level laser can modulate cortical excitability.

Author information

1
Department of Rehabilitation, Faculty of Medicine, University of Belgrade, 11000, Belgrade, Serbia; Klinika za Rehabilitaciju "Dr Miroslav Zotović", 11000, Belgrade, Serbia.

Abstract

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVE:

Near-infrared low-level laser (NIR-LLL) irradiation penetrates scalp and skull and can reach superficial layers of the cerebral cortex. It was shown to improve the outcome of acute stroke in both animal and human studies. In this study we evaluated whether transcranial laser stimulation (TLS) with NIR-LLL can modulate the excitability of the motor cortex (M1) as measured by transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS).

METHODS:

TLS was applied for 5 minutes over the representation of the right first dorsal interosseal muscle (FDI) in left primary motor cortex (M1), in 14 healthy subjects. Motor evoked potentials (MEPs) from the FDI, elicited by single-pulse TMS, were measured at baseline and up to 30 minutes after the TLS.

RESULTS:

The average MEP size was significantly reduced during the first 20 minutes following the TLS. The pattern was present in 10 (71.5%) of the participants. The MEP size reduction correlated negatively with the motor threshold at rest.

CONCLUSIONS:

TLS with NIR-LLL induced transitory reduction of the excitability of the stimulated cortex. These findings give further insights into the mechanisms of TLS effects in the human cerebral cortex, paving the way for potential applications of TLS in treatment of stroke and in other clinical settings.

KEYWORDS:

human; membrane potential; neuronal excitability; photobiomodulation; transcranial magnetic stimulation

PMID:
24136303
DOI:
10.1002/lsm.22190
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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