The effect of TMS on visual motion sensitivity: an increase in neural noise or a decrease in signal strength?

Ruzzoli, M. , Abrahamyan, A., Clifford, C. W.G., Marzi, C. A., Miniussi, C. and Harris, J. A. (2011) The effect of TMS on visual motion sensitivity: an increase in neural noise or a decrease in signal strength? Journal of Neurophysiology, 106(1), pp. 138-143. (doi:10.1152/jn.00746.2010) (PMID:21543749)

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Abstract

The underlying mechanisms of action of transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) are still a matter of debate. TMS may impair a subject's performance by increasing neural noise, suppressing the neural signal, or both. Here, we delivered a single pulse of TMS (spTMS) to V5/MT during a motion direction discrimination task while concurrently manipulating the level of noise in the motion stimulus. Our results indicate that spTMS essentially acts by suppressing the strength of the relevant visual signal. We suggest that TMS may induce a pattern of neural activity that complements the ongoing activation elicited by the sensory signal in a manner that partially impoverishes that signal.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:This research was supported by Grant DP0986137 from the Australia Research Council. M. Ruzzoli was supported by Grant CooperInt 2008, Junior Researcher Program, and by PhD scholarship, both from the University of Verona.
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Ruzzoli, Dr Manuela
Authors: Ruzzoli, M., Abrahamyan, A., Clifford, C. W.G., Marzi, C. A., Miniussi, C., and Harris, J. A.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Neuroscience and Psychology
Journal Name:Journal of Neurophysiology
Publisher:American Physiological Society
ISSN:0022-3077
ISSN (Online):1522-1598
Published Online:01 July 2011

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