Brain Stimulation: From Basic Research to Clinical Use

Type of Publication:
Electronic Article
Non-Invasive Brain stimulation, invasive Brain stimulation, cortical plasticity, neuromodulation, translational science
Benali, Alia
Tsutsui, Ken-Ichiro
Pfeiffer, F.
Sekino, Masaki
Frontiers in Human Neuroscience Brain Imaging and Stimulation

Originating in basic research, as a basis for understanding the function of brain areas, brain stimulation is currently employed for the treatment of many brain disorders including Parkinson's Disease, Epilepsy, and Depression. However, the available techniques for brain stimulation can differ, in the degree of surgical intervention: Invasive Brain Stimulation (IBS) techniques such as Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) and Intracortical Microstimulation (ICMS) that require extensive surgical intervention for placement of electrodes, or Non-Invasive Brain Stimulation (NIBS) techniques, for example, Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) and Transcranial Electrical Current Stimulation (tES) that require minimal or no intervention. With the development of thin movable electrodes having superior biocompatibility, some of the side effects related to the invasive procedure of IBS will very likely to be overcome. Likewise, advances in NIBS techniques related to spatial and temporal precision have closed the gap to its invasive counterparts. In parallel, considerable progress is being made in research laboratories using brain stimulation techniques to gain deeper insights into brain functions, and underlying neural and glial mechanisms, which in turn increase the efficacy of brain stimulation in treatments. Therefore, the therapeutic potential of stimulation techniques is not yet completed exhausted. However, the question remains, can the results from basic research be transferred easily to treatment of patients? By looking at the successes achieved in the past years, the answer to this question should be yes. Well-described animal models, good theoretical and anatomical models are essential for such translations. The proposed research topic aims to gather more evidence on the role of BS as a tool to better understand the physiological mechanisms of the brain, by studying the temporal and spatial dynamics of cortical and subcortical activations, and to discuss challenges and develop strategies for innovative therapeutic procedures. This Research Topic welcomes Original Research, Perspectives, Systematic Reviews, and Meta-Analyses covering the following topics: - Basic research models, theoretical models, preclinical or clinical applications of cortical and subcortical stimulation using TMS, tES, ICMS, and DBS in animal models and humans - Translational articles dealing with the effects of neuromodulation on the biochemistry of brain tissues, as well as those focusing on modeling strategies and closed-loop technologies - Neurophysiological studies in animal models and humans focusing on the mechanisms leading to altered cortical excitability, plasticity, and connectivity, or new experimental models aimed at understanding changes in cellular processes induced by electrical or inductive stimulation of neurons.