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A feasibility study for somatomotor cortical mapping in Tourette syndrome using neuronavigated transcranial magnetic stimulation

Sigurdsson, Hilmar P.; Jackson, Georgina M.; Jackson, Stephen R.; Dyke, Katherine; Kim, Soyoung


Hilmar P. Sigurdsson

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Professor of Cognitive Neuropsychology

Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience

Soyoung Kim


Tourette syndrome (TS) is a hyperkinetic movement disorder characterised by the occurrence of chronic motor and vocal tics, and is associated with alterations in the balance of excitatory and inhibitory signalling within key brain networks; in particular the cortical-striatal-thalamic-cortical (CSTC) brain circuits that are implicated in movement selection and habit learning. Converging evidence indicates abnormal brain network function in TS may be largely due to the impaired operation of GABA signalling within the striatum and within cortical motor areas, leading to the occurrence of tics. TS has been linked to a heightened sensitivity to somatic stimulation and altered processing of somatosensory information, and there is evidence to indicate that alterations in GABAergic function is likely to contribute to altered somatomotor function. Based upon this evidence, we hypothesised that the specificity of somatomotor representations in primary motor cortex would likely be reduced in individuals with TS. To test this, we used a rapid acquisition method together with neuronavigated transcranial magnetic stimulation (nTMS) to measure the cortical representation of a several different muscles in a group of young adults with TS and a matched group of typically developing individuals.


Sigurdsson, H. P., Jackson, G. M., Jackson, S. R., Dyke, K., & Kim, S. (2020). A feasibility study for somatomotor cortical mapping in Tourette syndrome using neuronavigated transcranial magnetic stimulation. Cortex, 129, 175-187.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Apr 21, 2020
Online Publication Date May 4, 2020
Publication Date 2020-08
Deposit Date Apr 29, 2020
Publicly Available Date May 5, 2021
Journal Cortex
Print ISSN 0010-9452
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 129
Pages 175-187
Keywords Experimental and Cognitive Psychology; Cognitive Neuroscience; Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
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