The effects of age and biological sex on the association between I-wave recruitment and the response to cTBS: An exploratory study

Jago M. Van Dam, Lynton Graetz, Julia B. Pitcher, Mitchell R. Goldsworthy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The neuroplastic response to continuous theta burst stimulation (cTBS) is inherently variable. The measurement of I-wave latencies has been shown to strongly predict the magnitude and direction of the response to cTBS, whereby longer latencies are associated with stronger long-term depression-like responses. However, potential differences in this association relating to age and sex have not been explored. We performed cTBS and measured I-wave recruitment (via MEP latencies) in 66 participants (31 female) ranging in age from 11 to 78 years. The influence of age and sex on the association between I-wave recruitment and the response to cTBS was tested using linear regression models. In contrast to previous studies, there was not a significant association between I-wave latencies and cTBS response at the group level (p = 0.142, R2 = 0.033). However, there were interactions between I-waves and both age and sex when predicting cTBS response. Subgroup analysis revealed that preferential late I-wave recruitment predicted cTBS response in adolescent females, but not in adolescent or adult males or adult females. These data suggest that the generalisability of I-wave measurement in predicting the response to cTBS may be lower than initially believed. Prediction models should include age and sex, rather than I-wave latencies alone, as our findings suggest that, while each factor alone is not a strong predictor, these factors interact to influence the response to cTBS.

Original languageEnglish
Article number148359
Number of pages8
JournalBrain Research
Volume1810
Early online date6 Apr 2023
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2023
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Continuous theta burst stimulation
  • I-waves
  • Neurodevelopment
  • Neuroplasticity
  • Sex
  • Transcranial magnetic stimulation

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