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Reduced Cerebellar Brain Inhibition Measured Using Dual-Site TMS in Older Than in Younger Adults

Rurak, B.K., Rodrigues, J.P., Power, B.D., Drummond, P.D.ORCID: 0000-0002-3711-8737 and Vallence, A.M.ORCID: 0000-0001-9190-6366 (2021) Reduced Cerebellar Brain Inhibition Measured Using Dual-Site TMS in Older Than in Younger Adults. The Cerebellum .

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Dual-site transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) can be used to measure the cerebellar inhibitory influence on the primary motor cortex, known as cerebellar brain inhibition (CBI), which is thought to be important for motor control. The aim of this study was to determine whether age-related differences in CBI (measured at rest) were associated with an age-related decline in bilateral motor control measured using the Purdue Pegboard task, the Four Square Step Test, and a 10-m walk. In addition, we examined test re-test reliability of CBI measured using dual-site TMS with a figure-of-eight coil in two sessions. There were three novel findings. First, CBI was less in older than in younger adults, which is likely underpinned by an age-related loss of Purkinje cells. Second, greater CBI was associated with faster 10-m walking performance in older adults, but slower 10-m walking performance in younger adults. Third, moderate intraclass correlation coefficients (ICCs: 0.53) were found for CBI in younger adults; poor ICCs were found for CBI (ICC: 0.40) in older adults. Together, these results have important implications for the use of dual-site TMS to increase our understanding of age- and disease-related changes in cortical motor networks, and the role of functional connectivity in motor control.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): Psychology, Counselling, Exercise Science and Chiropractic
Centre for Healthy Ageing
Health Futures Institute
Publisher: Springer Nature
Copyright: © 2021 Springer Nature Switzerland AG.
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