Neurophysiological Behavioral and Cognitive Networks in Movement Disorders

  • End date
    Jul 31, 2023
  • participants needed
  • sponsor
    University of Alabama at Birmingham
Updated on 24 January 2021
parkinson's disease
deep brain stimulation
essential tremor


The purpose of this study is to investigate the brain activity associated with motor and non-motor symptoms of movement disorders, including Parkinson's disease (PD) and essential tremor. These movement disorders commonly have significant non-motor features, such as depression, cognitive and memory impairment, decreased attention, speech and language disturbances, and slower processing speeds. The investigators are interested in the brain activity associated with these motor and non-motor symptoms, and propose to investigate changes in brain activity while the investigators perform recordings of the surface and deep structures of the brain, in addition to the typical recordings the investigators perform, during routine deep brain stimulation (DBS) surgery.


Movement disorders are a prominent cause of disability worldwide. In the United States, it is estimated that more than 4 million people suffer from Parkinson's disease (PD), essential tremor (ET), and dystonia, making them some of the most prevalent of neurologic disorders. Of these, PD is the most common, and is primarily characterized by tremor, rigidity, and bradykinesia. However, though primarily characterized by motor symptoms, many patients also have prominent non-motor features, including depression and cognitive impairment, with deficiencies in processing speed, memory, attention, and learning. Some of the most debilitating cognitive deficiencies include deficits in goal-directed response selection and response inhibition, language, and/or speech difficulties, all of which substantially contribute to reduced quality of life.

Unfortunately, these features of movement disorders are less well-studied and lack effective treatment options, necessitating that new treatments be investigated. Deep brain stimulation (DBS), while a highly effective treatment for the cardinal features of PD, is essentially ineffective for, and can even worsen other cognitive domains, and there are few studies currently investigating how different parameters of DBS may improve these symptoms. In addition, speech abnormalities are common with Parkinson's disease and DBS can sometimes worsen speech problems. These impairments consists primarily of hypophonia, but cognitive deficits can result in actual language disturbance. It is often difficult to know whether the speech problems are related to language processing or articulation (related to the movement disorder). In an effort to begin addressing these questions, we propose to study motor and non-motor symptoms in patients with movement disorders, and to correlate movement and cognition with underlying neural electrophysiology.

Condition Orofacial Dyskinesia, movement disorder, movement disorders
Treatment Response Inhibition and Deep Brain Stimulation in Parkinson's disease
Clinical Study IdentifierNCT04061135
SponsorUniversity of Alabama at Birmingham
Last Modified on24 January 2021


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Inclusion Criteria

Is your age greater than or equal to 18 yrs?
Gender: Male or Female
Do you have Orofacial Dyskinesia?
Do you have any of these conditions: movement disorder or Orofacial Dyskinesia or movement disorders?
Eligible for DBS surgery based on multi-disciplinary consensus review
Have a diagnosis of Parkinson's disease or Essential Tremor
A minimum of 18 years of age
Willingness to participate in the paradigms described in the protocol

Exclusion Criteria

Inability to provide full and informed consent
Are not surgical candidates due to co-morbid conditions or pregnancy
Have not undergone an adequate trial of conservative medical management
Have a clinical presentation for which DBS surgery is not indicated
Are not able to participate in study-related activities
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