Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation Effect on Virtual Hand Illusion.

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Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation Effect on Virtual Hand Illusion.

Abstract
Virtual reality (VR) is effectively used to evoke the mirror illusion, and transcranial direct current stimulation ( tDCS) synergistically facilitates this illusion. This study investigated whether a mirror virtual hand illusion (MVHI) induced by an immersive, first-person-perspective, virtual mirror system could be modulated by tDCS of the primary motor cortex. Fourteen healthy adults (average age 21.86 years ±0.47, seven men and seven women) participated in this study, and they experienced VR with and without tDCS-the tDCS and sham conditions, each of which takes ∼30 minutes-on separate days to allow the washout of the tDCS effect. While experiencing VR, the movements of the virtual left hand reflected the flexion and extension of the real right hand. Subsequently, electroencephalogram was recorded, the magnitude of the proprioceptive shift was measured, and the participants provided responses to a questionnaire regarding hand ownership. A significant difference in the proprioceptive shift was observed between the tDCS and sham conditions. In addition, there was significant suppression of the mu power in Pz, and augmentation of the beta power in the Pz, P4, O1, and O2 channels. The difference in proprioceptive deviation between the two conditions showed significant negative correlation with mu suppression over the left frontal lobe in the tDCS condition. Finally, the question “I felt that the virtual hand was my own hand” received a significantly higher score under the tDCS condition. In short, applying tDCS over the motor cortex facilitates the MVHI by activating the attentional network over the parietal and frontal lobes such that the MVHI induces more proprioceptive drift, which suggests that the combination of VR and tDCS can enhance the immersive effect in VR. This result provides better support for the use of the MVHI paradigm in combination with tDCS for recovery from illnesses such as stroke.

PMID: 32478563 [PubMed – as supplied by publisher]

Cyberpsychol Behav Soc Netw. 2020 Jun 01;:

Authors: Lim H, Kim WS, Ku J

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