Examining How Motor Rehabilitation Promotes Brain Reorganization Following Stroke, an MRI Study

The safety and scientific validity of this study is the responsibility of the study sponsor and investigators. Listing a study does not mean it has been evaluated by the U.S. Federal Government. Read our disclaimer for details. Identifier: NCT01725919
Recruitment Status : Active, not recruiting
First Posted : November 14, 2012
Last Update Posted : July 18, 2017
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Lynne Gauthier , PhD, Ohio State University

Brief Summary:
Constraint-induced movement therapy (CI therapy) is a highly efficacious treatment for residual motor disability in chronic stroke. Its effectiveness is believed to be due, at least in part, to the therapy's ability to aid the brain in "rewiring itself." For example, CI therapy produces increases in the amount of grey matter (the parts of the brain where neuron cell bodies are most closely clustered) in certain areas of the human brain (Gauthier et al., 2008). The cellular and molecular mechanisms that are responsible for this increase in grey matter volume are not known, however. Thus, it is unclear how the therapy helps brains "rewire" themselves. This study aims to better understand the timecourse and cellular/molecular nature of brain changes during CI therapy. Because there is currently no way to directly measure cellular/molecular changes in the brain noninvasively, this study will infer what is happening on a microstructural level using new MRI techniques (three dimensional pictures of the brain). For example, by charting the timecourse of grey matter changes during CI therapy, and cross-comparing this to what is known about the timecourses of different cellular/molecular processes, the investigators can gain a greater understanding of what cellular processes may be responsible for increases in grey matter. The investigators will gain additional information about which cellular processes are important for rehabilitation-induced improvement by measuring larger-scale changes (e.g., amount of blood flow through different brain areas) that accompany cellular changes. The investigators are hopeful that by better understanding how CI therapy can change the brain, the effectiveness of rehabilitation can be improved upon. For example, insight into the mechanisms of rehabilitation-induced brain change may suggest particular drug targets to increase brain plasticity. This study will help us better understand how the brain repairs itself after injury.

Condition or disease Intervention/treatment Phase
Stroke Hemiparesis Behavioral: CI therapy Not Applicable

Study Type : Interventional  (Clinical Trial)
Actual Enrollment : 31 participants
Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Crossover Assignment
Masking: None (Open Label)
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Examining Mechanisms of Neuroplasticity Following Motor Rehabilitation in Stroke
Study Start Date : July 2012
Actual Primary Completion Date : June 30, 2017
Estimated Study Completion Date : June 2020

Resource links provided by the National Library of Medicine

MedlinePlus related topics: Rehabilitation

Arm Intervention/treatment
Experimental: Immediate CI therapy Behavioral: CI therapy
constraint induced movement therapy

Active Comparator: Delayed CI therapy Behavioral: CI therapy
constraint induced movement therapy

Primary Outcome Measures :
  1. Brain structure [ Time Frame: Participants will be followed for 4-6 weeks. Change in brain structure at mid-treatment (after 1 week of CI therapy), post-treatment (after 2 weeks of therapy), and at 2-week follow-up will be measured. ]
    Assessed via dynamic susceptibility contrast MRI, diffusion tensor MRI, MRI-based myelin mapping, T1-weighted MRI

Secondary Outcome Measures :
  1. Motor function [ Time Frame: Participants will be followed for 4-6 weeks. Change in motor function at mid-treatment (after 1 week of CI therapy), post-treatment (after 2 weeks of therapy), and at 2-week follow-up will be measured. ]
    Assessed via Wolf Motor Function Test, Action Research Arm Test, Motor Activity Log

Information from the National Library of Medicine

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Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years and older   (Adult, Older Adult)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Males or females 18 years of age and over
  • Experienced a stroke resulting in mild to moderate hemiparesis (some residual motor function, e.g. able to pick up a washcloth placed flat on a table) at least 6 months prior to enrollment. Suggested active range of motion criteria for this level of impairment include: 45° shoulder abduction and flexion, 20° elbow extension, 20° wrist extension, and 10° extension of thumb and fingers.
  • Preserved ability to comprehend and participate in basic elements of the therapy

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Concurrent participation in other experimental trials for treatment of motor dysfunction
  • Having received botulinum toxin injection within the past 3 months
  • Previous intensive rehabilitation in the chronic phase post-stroke
  • Serious/uncontrolled medical problems (e.g., dementia, severe pain, end-stage or degenerative diseases)
  • Kidney disease as evidenced by eGFR<60
  • Anemia
  • Sickle cell disease
  • History of kidney transplant
  • Other evidence/history of renal disease
  • Pregnancy
  • Implanted metallic parts of implanted electronic devices, including pacemakers, defibrillators, aneurism clip or implant medication pump that are MRI incompatible
  • An implanted brain stimulator
  • Permanent tattoo (e.g., eye liner) containing metallic coloring
  • Claustrophobia precluding MRI

Information from the National Library of Medicine

To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contact information provided by the sponsor.

Please refer to this study by its identifier (NCT number): NCT01725919

United States, Ohio
The Ohio State University, 2154 Dodd Hall
Columbus, Ohio, United States, 43210
Sponsors and Collaborators
Lynne Gauthier , PhD
Principal Investigator: Lynne V Gauthier, Ph.D. The Ohio State U.

Responsible Party: Lynne Gauthier , PhD, Assistant Professor of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Ohio State University Identifier: NCT01725919     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: 60034699
First Posted: November 14, 2012    Key Record Dates
Last Update Posted: July 18, 2017
Last Verified: July 2017

Keywords provided by Lynne Gauthier , PhD, Ohio State University:
constraint induced movement therapy
CI therapy

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Cerebrovascular Disorders
Brain Diseases
Central Nervous System Diseases
Nervous System Diseases
Vascular Diseases
Cardiovascular Diseases
Neurologic Manifestations
Signs and Symptoms