Peer-Reviewed Journal Details
Mandatory Fields
Debarnot U;Neveu R;Samaha Y;Saruco E;Macintyre T;Guillot A;
Neurobiology of Learning and Memory
Acquisition and consolidation of implicit motor learning with physical and mental practice across multiple days of anodal tDCS.
Optional Fields
Acquisition and consolidation of a new motor skill occurs gradually over long time span. Motor imagery (MI) and brain stimulation have been showed as beneficial approaches that boost motor learning, but little is known about the extent of their combined effects. Here, we aimed to investigate, for the first time, whether delivering multiple sessions of transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) over primary motor cortex during physical and MI practice might improve implicit motor sequence learning in a young population. Participants practiced a serial reaction time task (SRTT) either physically or through MI, and concomitantly received either an anodal (excitatory) or sham stimulation over the primary motor cortex during three successive days. The effect of anodal tDCS on the general motor skill and sequence specific learning were assessed on both acquisition (within-day) and consolidation (between-day) processes. We further compared the magnitude of motor learning reached after a single and three daily sessions of tDCS. The main finding showed that anodal tDCS boosted MI practice, but not physical practice, during the first acquisition session. A second major result showed that compared to sham stimulation, multiple daily session of anodal tDCS, for both types of practice, resulted in greater implicit motor sequence learning rather than a single session of stimulation. The present study is of particular importance in the context of rehabilitation, where we postulate that scheduling mental training when patients are not able to perform physical movement might beneficiate from concomitant and consecutive brain stimulation sessions over M1 to promote functional recovery.
Grant Details