Dopaminergic Enhancement of Learning and Memory in Aphasia
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The purpose of this study is to determine whether levodopa, in combination with a high frequency language training, is effective in boosting naming performance in patients with aphasia.
Condition or disease
Our prior work shows that d-amphetamine and the dopamine precursor levodopa markedly improve word learning success in healthy subjects. In this randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind clinical trial, we probe whether daily administration of levodopa, coupled with several hours of language training every day, will significantly improve naming abilities in patients with aphasia as compared to placebo administration. We furthermore examine with magnetic resonance imaging which brain regions need to be functionally intact for a dopaminergic improvement of language therapy.
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Layout table for eligibility information
Ages Eligible for Study:
18 Years to 75 Years (Adult, Older Adult)
Sexes Eligible for Study:
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:
Inclusion Criteria for patients with aphasia:
Unilateral cerebrovascular accident (stroke) in the territory of the arteria media
Time post onset: > 6 months
Aphasia with anomia
Age between 18-75 years
Primary language: German
Exclusion Criteria for patients and healthy controls:
Known allergy to levodopa or tartrazine
History of medication/drug abuse
Acute nicotine withdrawal or > 15 cigarettes per day
> 6 cups/glasses of coffee, caffeine drinks or energy drinks per day
> 50 grams of alcohol per day
Severe hypertonia (systole >180 mm Hg)
Diabetes, asthma, or glaucoma
Severe hearing disability
Evidence for severe hippocampal damage
Premorbid depression or psychosis
Medication with dopamine agonists or antagonists
Changes in anticonvulsive medication during the week prior to study enrollment