Dopaminergic Effects on Cortical Function in Tourette Syndrome

Grant Type
Grant Year
Institution Location
Institution Organization Name
Marquette University
Investigators Name
Campbell, Meghan, PhD

Treatment with medications that both enhance and hinder dopamine function in the brain has been shown to reduce tic severity in Tourette Syndrome (TS). This suggests that abnormal functioning in the brain’s motor system can be modified by manipulating dopamine. There is also preliminary evidence to suggest that dopamine affects non-motor brain areas in TS. Previously, we demonstrated that individuals with TS produced greater levels of brain activity during a memory task than individuals without TS, and that administration of dopamine reduced the brain activity in TS participants to a level comparable to that of the non-TS group. The purpose of this project is to confirm and expand our observations on how dopamine affects brain regions relevant to cognitive functioning in TS. We will examine brain responses in a larger, more diverse group of individuals whom we will ask to perform additional cognitive tasks. Ultimately, this study will provide new insights into how TS affects the dopamine system in the brain, and how these alterations are relevant to cognitive functioning. Meghan C. Campbell, Ph.D. Marquette University, Milwaukee, WI Award: $40,000 (Fellowship) Tourette Association of America Inc. – Research Grant Award 2008-2009