Seminar Series

Non-invasive manipulation of fronto-parietal networks for the improvement of visual performance in the intact and focally damaged human brain

Our individual abilities to detect what we see, we hear or we feel emerge from the activity of interconnected neurons, forming local and large-scale brain networks. The sensibility range of such systems seems to be well fixed in each one of us, defining our individual perceptual skills. Nonetheless, our perceptual abilities are not carved in stone. Indeed, they can be flexibly modulated, transferred to new tasks or also adapted to novel demands. And yet, it is such plastic flexibility, which allows us to use practice to learn, improve and optimally adapt to changing environments. In the current talk I will discuss several experiments performed by our research team in which we show how specific cortical nodes of fronto-parietal systems can be non invasively manipulated in humans by Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) to drive causal improvements of visual performance by interfering local and interregional coding patterns (Chanes et al. 2012, PlosOne) and likely by entraining or desynchronizing (Chanes et al. 2013, J Neurosci) brain oscillatory activity at specific frequency bands. I will also present some evidence on the dependence of this "cognitive cosmetic" potential from specific sets of white matter tracts linking the stimulated brain regions with other network sites allowing interregional coupling processes (Quentin et al. 2013, NeuroImage, Quentin et al. 2014, Cerebral Cortex). Present and future clinical applications of our findings for the rehabilitation of visual and awareness impairments will be also discussed. References 1. Chanes L, Chica A, Quentin R, Valero-Cabré A. Manipulation of Pre-Target Activity on the Right Frontal Eye Field Enhances Conscious Visual Perception in Humans. PLoS One 2012, 7(5):e36232. 2. Chanes L, Quentin R, Tallon-Baudry C, Valero-Cabré A. Causal frequency-specific contributions of frontal spatiotemporal patterns induced by non invasive neurostimulation to visual performance enhancements in humans. J Neurosci 2013, 33, 5000-5. 3. Quentin R, Chanes L, Migliaccio L, Valabrègue R, Valero-Cabré A. Fronto-Tectal White Matter Connectivity Influences the Facilitatory Effects of Neurostimulation on Visual Detection. Neuroimage 2013, 82:344-354. 4. Quentin R, Chanes L, Vernet M, Valero-Cabré A. The first branch of the Superior Longitudinal Fasciculus mediates visual improvements induced by rhythmic TMS on right prefrontal areas. Cerebral Cortex 2014 Feb 18, [Epub ahead of print]