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Neural Plasticity
Volume 2017, Article ID 1254615, 12 pages
https://doi.org/10.1155/2017/1254615
Research Article

Cerebellar Cathodal Transcranial Direct Stimulation and Performance on a Verb Generation Task: A Replication Study

1Rijndam Rehabilitation Institute, P.O. Box 23181, 3001 KD Rotterdam, Netherlands
2Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, Erasmus MC, University Medical Center Rotterdam, P.O. Box 2040, 3000 CA Rotterdam, Netherlands
3Department of Neuroscience, Erasmus MC, University Medical Center Rotterdam, P.O. Box 2040, 3000 CA Rotterdam, Netherlands
4Erasmus University College, Rotterdam, Netherlands
5Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Erasmus MC, University Medical Center Rotterdam, P.O. Box 2040, 3000 CA Rotterdam, Netherlands
6Department of Biomedical Engineering, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer-Sheva, Israel

Correspondence should be addressed to K. Spielmann; ln.madnjir@nnamleipsk

Received 22 September 2016; Accepted 12 January 2017; Published 14 February 2017

Academic Editor: Malgorzata Kossut

Copyright © 2017 K. Spielmann et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

The role of the cerebellum in cognitive processing is increasingly recognized but still poorly understood. A recent study in this field applied cerebellar Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (c-tDCS) to the right cerebellum to investigate the role of prefrontal-cerebellar loops in language aspects of cognition. Results showed that the improvement in participants’ verbal response times on a verb generation task was facilitated immediately after cathodal c-tDCS, compared to anodal or sham c-tDCS. The primary aim of the present study is to replicate these findings and additionally to investigate possible longer term effects. A crossover within-subject design was used, comparing cathodal and sham c-tDCS. The experiment consisted of two visits with an interval of one week. Our results show no direct contribution of cathodal c-tDCS over the cerebellum to language task performance. However, one week later, the group receiving cathodal c-tDCS in the first visit show less improvement and increased variability in their verbal response times during the second visit, compared to the group receiving sham c-tDCS in the first visit. These findings suggest a potential negative effect of c-tDCS and warrant further investigation into long term effects of c-tDCS before undertaking clinical studies with poststroke patients with aphasia.