Scientific Overview

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) is a non-invasive technique to stimulate the cortical regions of the brain when applied with proper parameters. TMS has been used in medicine for over three decades.

TMS utilizes electromagnetic induction to generate weak electric currents. This causes enhancement of the activity in targeted parts of the brain. Repetitive TMS produces changes in synaptic efficacy. These changes enhance LTP processes, which in turn promote learning, and have a long-lasting effect [1].

TMS systems are currently CE-marked and FDA-cleared for the treatment of clinical depression, with widely accepted safety guidelines already in place. TMS is also undergoing clinical studies for use in various other indications. These include stroke, Parkinson’s Disease, Tinnitus and more. neuroAD uses TMS, combined with targeted Cognitive Training, and is CE-marked for treating mild to moderate Alzheimer’s Disease.

[1] Fitzgerald PB; Fountain S; Daskalakis J (December 2006). “A comprehensive review of the effects of rTMS on motor cortical excitability and inhibition”. Clinical Neurophysiology 117 (12): 2584–96.

A Closer Look at Long-Term Potentiation (LTP)

Long-Term Potentiation (LTP) is the strengthening, or potentiation, of the connection between two nerve cells (synapses) which lasts for an extended period of time.

Under normal conditions, a neuron activated on one side (synapse) will emit a single pulse on its other end. However, under certain circumstances, a single pulse gives rise to a long lasting event of pulses on the other end. This phenomenon is known as Long-Term Potentiation (LTP).

Discovered and identified by Prof. Eric Kandel, LTP results in greater connectivity between neurons, and is commonly regarded as the cellular basis of memory and learning. Deficits in LTP processes have been shown to lead to impaired cognitive performance, including memory impairment.

LTP declines with age. The LTP mechanism has been shown to be even more impaired in AD patients, as a result of the accumulation of amyloid-β (Aβ), which at high concentration is toxic for the synapses. As such, alteration of the LTP mechanism may in fact represent the first and earliest sign of Alzheimer’s Disease.

Reactivating LTP was shown by Neuronix to reverse the progression of Alzheimer’s Disease.

It has been well-documented that LTP can be induced by applying high frequency stimulation to the neurons[1]. This can be accomplished by applying high-frequency stimulation to nerve cells, such as with TMS, and thus potentially improving learning and memory.

[1] NeuroReport, 1996 Jan 31st, Vol. 7, Issue 2, Wang et. al

neuroAD is an investigational device currently not commercially available in the United States.
neuroAD is CE-cleared and commercially available for the treatment of mild to moderate Alzheimer’s Disease in Europe.