Motor System Excitability in Tourette Syndrome: Developmental Aspects and Comorbid Obessive -Compulsive Disorder

Grant Type
Grant Year
Institution Location
Institution Organization Name
Georg-August Universitat Germany
Investigators Name
Rothenberger, Dr. A.

Although Tourette Syndrome (TS) waxes and wanes in tic expression and comorbidities during its natural course, little attention has been paid to developmental processes of tic phenomenology and associated disorders in relation to the pathophysiological background of the neuropsychiatric problems. Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) allows us to test local neuronal excitability of brain circuits in a non-invasive way and has proven to be a valuable tool for studying TS pathophysiology. For example, deficient motor inhibition within sensorimotor circuit could be demonstrated in adults with TS as well as in children with TS, which probably is influenced by the presence of distal tics and obsessive-compulsive behavior. For the first time, using TMS, two issues will be investigated in this study: The neurodynamics of the pathophysiological background of TS over time in patients with TS (aged 8 to 20 years) who are divided into subgroups with and without distal tics, and The association of TS with obsessive-compulsive disorder in children (aged 10 to 16 years) using a sophisticated statistical design. These investigations may provide further insight into the pathophysiological mechanisms of TS allowing a better understanding of both the phenomenological development and the comorbidity of the disorder. Professor Dr. A. Rothenberger, PD; Dr. G.H. Moll; Dr. H. Heinrich Georg-August Universitat Gottingen Kinder und Jugendpsychiatrie, Gottingen, Germany Award: $43,320 Tourette Association of America Inc. – Research Grant Award 2002-2003