Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation in the Research of Cortical Inhibition in Depres­sive Disorder and Schizophrenia, the Ef­fect of Antipsychotics

Authors: L. Ustohal
Authors‘ workplace: Psychiatrická klinika LF MU a FN Brno ;  CEITEC – Středoevropský technologický institut, MU, Brno
Published in: Cesk Slov Neurol N 2017; 80/113(2): 157-162
Category: Review Article
doi: 10.14735/amcsnn2017157

Tato práce byla finančně podpořena projektem (Ministerstva zdravotnictví) koncepčního rozvoje výzkumné organizace 65269705 (FN Brno).


Transcranial magnetic stimulation enables exploration of cortical inhibition in various neuropsychiatric disorders, including depressive disorder and schizophrenia. Cortical inhibition can be defined as a neurophysiological mechanism (not pathological) through which GABAergic interneurons influence the activity of other neurons. The most frequently studied cortical inhibition parameters include cortical silent period, short-interval cortical inhibition, long-interval cortical inhibition, amplitude of motor-evoked potential, resting motor threshold, and intracortical facilitation. Published cross-sectional studies suggest impairment of cortical inhibition in both above mentioned mental disorders. Some inconsistent results in these cross-sectional studies can be explained by their design and by heterogeneous samples of patients. It might be difficult to differentiate the effect of the disorder and the effect of the treatment. This problem can be resolved with recent prospective longitudinal studies aimed at the effect of selected antipsychotics on cortical inhibition in schizophrenia. They confirmed impairment of cortical inhibition and they identified the potential antipsychotics have to change this impairment. Some researchers believe that this potential is a newly discovered mechanism of action. Some researchers also suppose that the new data on pathophysiology and treatment of (not only) depressive disorder and schizophrenia discovered using the transcranial magnetic stimulation help (partially) to rebuild psychiatry on new grounds, sometimes called Circuit-based Psychiatry.

Key words:
cortical inhibition – transcranial magnetic stimulation – depressive disorder – schizophrenia – antipsychotics

The authors declare they have no potential conflicts of interest concern­ing drugs, products, or services used in the study.

The Editorial Board declares that the manuscript met the ICMJE “uniform requirements” for biomedical papers.


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