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Papers of the Week

Papers: 11 Feb 2023 - 17 Feb 2023


Human Studies, Neurobiology, Neuroimaging, Neuromodulation


2023 Feb 13

Brain Topogr


TMS-evoked EEG potentials demonstrate altered cortical excitability in migraine with aura.


Helling RM, Perenboom MJL, Bauer PR, Carpay JA, Sander JW, Ferrari MD, Visser GH, Tolner EA


Migraine is associated with altered sensory processing, that may be evident as changes in cortical responsivity due to altered excitability, especially in migraine with aura. Cortical excitability can be directly assessed by combining transcranial magnetic stimulation with electroencephalography (TMS-EEG). We measured TMS evoked potential (TEP) amplitude and response consistency as these measures have been linked to cortical excitability but were not yet reported in migraine.We recorded 64-channel EEG during single-pulse TMS on the vertex interictally in 10 people with migraine with aura and 10 healthy controls matched for age, sex and resting motor threshold. On average 160 pulses around resting motor threshold were delivered through a circular coil in clockwise and counterclockwise direction. Trial-averaged TEP responses, frequency spectra and phase clustering (over the entire scalp as well as in frontal, central and occipital midline electrode clusters) were compared between groups, including comparison to sham-stimulation evoked responses.Migraine and control groups had a similar distribution of TEP waveforms over the scalp. In migraine with aura, TEP responses showed reduced amplitude around the frontal and occipital N100 peaks. For the migraine and control groups, responses over the scalp were affected by current direction for the primary motor cortex, somatosensory cortex and sensory association areas, but not for frontal, central or occipital midline clusters.This study provides evidence of altered TEP responses in-between attacks in migraine with aura. Decreased TEP responses around the N100 peak may be indicative of reduced cortical GABA-mediated inhibition and expand observations on enhanced cortical excitability from earlier migraine studies using more indirect measurements.