Navigated transcranial magnetic stimulation in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

Muscle & Nerve

PubMedID: 25049055

Chervyakov AV, Bakulin IS, Savitskaya NG, Arkhipov IV, Gavrilov AV, Zakharova MN, Piradov MA. Navigated transcranial magnetic stimulation in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Muscle Nerve. 2015;51(1):125-31.
Introduction: Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a set of disorders associated with preferential degeneration of both upper and lower motor neurons. Navigated transcranial magnetic stimulation (nTMS) is a tool used to perform noninvasive functional brain mapping. Objective: To evaluate the function of upper motor neurons in ALS. Methods: nTMS was performed on 30 patients with ALS (mean age 54.4 ± 12.1 years) and 24 healthy volunteers (mean age 32.7 ± 13.3 years). Results: The resting motor threshold (MT) was significantly higher in ALS patients than in controls (P < 0.001). The mean map areas were smaller in patients with ALS than in healthy individuals, although some patients with short disease duration had extended maps. Discussion: Motor area maps serve as markers of upper motor neuron damage in ALS. Further research may elucidate the pathogenic mechanisms of the neurodegenerative process and aid in development of diagnostic and prognostic markers. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.