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Abstract #0958

Influence of repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation on functional connectivity and hemodynamics in the rat brain

Julia Boonzaier1, Geralda A. F. van Tilborg1, Mark J.R.J. Bouts2,3,4, Petar P.I. Petrov5, Caroline L. van Heijningen1, Gerard van Vliet1, Annette van der Toorn1, Sebastiaan F.W. Neggers5, and Rick M. Dijkhuizen1

1Center for Image Sciences, University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht, Netherlands, 2Institute of Psychology, Leiden University, Leiden, Netherlands, 3Department of Radiology, Leiden University Medical Center, Leiden, Netherlands, 4Leiden Institute for Brain and Cognition (LIBC), Leiden University, Leiden, Netherlands, 5Department of Psychiatry, Brain Center Rudolf Magnus, University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht, Netherlands

Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) is a non-invasive neuromodulation technique with the ability to change cortical excitability, however its precise mechanism of action is not completely understood. Therefore, by acquiring resting-state fMRI and perfusion MRI data we assessed the influence of unilateral low-frequency (inhibitory) rTMS on functional connectivity and hemodynamics in stimulated cortical tissue in rats. After four consecutive days of rTMS we measured reduced interhemispheric functional connectivity between homotopic sensorimotor regions, while cerebral blood flow remained largely unaffected. This reduction in interhemispheric functional connectivity may be due to the inhibitory effect of low-frequency rTMS on cortical excitability.

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