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. 2018 Jan 4;11:37.
doi: 10.3389/fnint.2017.00037. eCollection 2017.

Facilitation of Function and Manipulation Knowledge of Tools Using Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS)

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Free PMC article

Facilitation of Function and Manipulation Knowledge of Tools Using Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS)

Ryo Ishibashi et al. Front Integr Neurosci. .
Free PMC article

Abstract

Using a variety of tools is a common and essential component of modern human life. Patients with brain damage or neurological disorders frequently have cognitive deficits in their recognition and manipulation of tools. In this study, we focused on improving tool-related cognition using transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS). Converging evidence from neuropsychology, neuroimaging and non- invasive brain stimulation has identified the anterior temporal lobe (ATL) and inferior parietal lobule (IPL) as brain regions supporting action semantics. We observed enhanced performance in tool cognition with anodal tDCS over ATL and IPL in two cognitive tasks that require rapid access to semantic knowledge about the function or manipulation of common tools. ATL stimulation improved access to both function and manipulation knowledge of tools. The effect of IPL stimulation showed a trend toward better manipulation judgments. Our findings support previous studies of tool semantics and provide a novel approach for manipulation of underlying circuits.

Keywords: cognitive enhancement; praxis; semantics; tool use; transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS).

Figures

Figure 1
Figure 1
Stimulus presentation in the two cognitive tasks.
Figure 2
Figure 2
Model of transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) current. Red-yellow colors indicate increased magnitude of the total electric field due to tDCS. Left panel displays left anterior temporal lobe (ATL) stimulation, while the right panel highlights stimulation within the left inferior parietal lobule (IPL).
Figure 3
Figure 3
Accuracy in sham, ATL and IPL conditions. Error bars indicate standard error.
Figure 4
Figure 4
Estimated regression coefficient values for the tDCS effect (ATL/IPL vs. sham). Error bars indicate estimated standard deviation. *Indicates statistically significant deviation from zero (p < 0.05).

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