Clinical Trial

Non-Invasive Brain Stimulation and Skill Development

Study Description

How Many Days Would You Want to Practice a Skill to Achieve it?

Practice is required to improve your shot in basketball or to play a musical instrument. The learning of these motor skills can be further enhanced by non-invasively stimulating regions of the brain that control movements with electrical currents. These electric currents can strengthen or weaken connections of the brain, which consequently affects a person's ability to improve their performance on a skill. Non-invasive brain stimulation (NIBS) is widely applied in many disciplines of neuroscience research, and has potential therapeutic application. There are two specific types of NIBS that will be used in this research study: 1) Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS), which applies very weak electrical currents via two rubber electrodes on the scalp, and 2) Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS), which applies magnetic pulses via a coil against the head, to stimulate regions of the brain. Both types of non-invasive brain stimulation (i.e., tDCS, and TMS) are well-tolerated, painless, and safe. The application of tDCS to brain regions that control movements, concurrently with practice of a skill, results in better skill performance, than practice alone with no tDCS. Therefore, in this study, we will be testing different types of brain stimulation and different amounts of practice.

Location

Locations Selected Location

Methods

No pharmaceutical medication involved No pharmaceutical medication involved
Patients and healthy individuals accepted Patients and healthy individuals accepted

Device - Sham TDCS

Placebo stimulation is applied to the left motor cortex while participants perform a motor task in the right hand. During the motor task, participants use their right hand to pinch a force transducer that controls an on-screen cursor to navigate between a start position and a sequence of 5 other positions to the right.

Device - Anodal TDCS

Excitatory stimulation is applied to the left motor cortex while participants perform a motor task in the right hand. During the motor task, participants use their right hand to pinch a force transducer that controls an on-screen cursor to navigate between a start position and a sequence of 5 other positions to the right.

Device - Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS)

Participants will receive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) to allow research investigators to determine the location of the left motor cortex.

Additional Information

Official Study Title

How Many Days Would You Want to Practice a Skill to Achieve it?

Clinical Trial ID

NCT03249961

ParticipAid ID

7e5GRb