Understanding and Optimizing Vagus Nerve Stimulation Directed Cortical Plasticity

DSpace/Manakin Repository

Understanding and Optimizing Vagus Nerve Stimulation Directed Cortical Plasticity

Show full item record

Title: Understanding and Optimizing Vagus Nerve Stimulation Directed Cortical Plasticity
Author(s):
Borland, Michael
Advisor: Kilgard, Michael P.
Date Created: 2018-05
Format: Dissertation
Keywords: Vagus nerve
Neural stimulation
Neuroplasticity
Abstract: Vagus nerve stimulation (VNS) is a tool that has been used to treat epilepsy, depression and enhance memory. In the last few years VNS has been observed to direct cortical plasticity when paired with a sensory or motor event. Now VNS is being examined as a new tool to treat tinnitus and stroke by reversing pathological brain plasticity. The VNS pairing therapy has improved several patient’s conditions who are suffering from tinnitus or paralysis from stroke. Even though several patients benefited from the VNS pairing therapy none were completely cured, and some patients had little to no benefit. One reason for this could be that the VNS parameters have not been optimized. When VNS is used to treat epilepsy, depression or to enhance memory, a certain VNS current intensity range has been beneficial to people. My study revealed that VNS-tone pairing enhances cortical plasticity over a twofold range of VNS intensity at 0.4 mA and 0.8 mA. Another VNS parameter my study looked at was the interval between nerve stimulations for the VNS-tone pairing therapy. VNS-tone pairing therapy with a longer interstimulus interval significantly increased the degree of map plasticity compared to the same stimulation with a shorter interval. These observations confirm that the interval between VNStone pairing events and intensity current influences the degree of cortical plasticity. The final parameter my experiments observed was the number of stimulations VNS-tone pairing achieved in a session. Decreasing the number of stimulation in the VNS-tone pairing did not enhance cortical plasticity.
Degree Name: PHD
Degree Level: Doctoral
Persistent Link: http://hdl.handle.net/10735.1/5839
Type : text
Degree Program: Cognition and Neuroscience

Files in this item

Files Size Format View
ETD-5608-008-BORLAND-7869.38.pdf 1.972Mb PDF View/Open Dissertation

This item appears in the following Collection(s)


Show full item record