Are you a healthy 18-40 year old who exercises at least 2.5 hours per week? You may be able to participate in a research study to help find out if non-invasive brain stimulation can be used to adjust hormones associated with physical performance and resilience. Eligible participants are right-handed and must be willing and able to undergo MRI scanning and blood draws. Compensation is provided.
Hormones play an important role in physical performance and responses to stress. The purpose of this study is to find out if non-invasive brain stimulation can be used to adjust hormones associated with physical performance and responses to stress. Researchers hope their findings lead to new ways to help people improve performance and recover from injury in the future.
COULD THIS STUDY BE RIGHT FOR YOU?
- Males and females aged 18-40
- No metal in body or implanted medical devices, including metal dental retainer or copper IUD
- Physically active for at least 2.5 hours per week
- Comfortable completing maximal exercise (involves cycling with increasing difficulty until exhaustion)
- No history of epilepsy, seizure, or sleep disorders
- No history of neurological, cardiovascular, or other major medical disorders
- No current brain injury, psychiatric, or mental health disorders
- Not pregnant
- Willing and able to have blood draws
- Do not weigh more than 300 lbs.
WHAT PARTICIPANTS CAN EXPECT
Participation can last between 6 weeks and 1 year and can involve up to 9 in-person visits. The study will be divided into two smaller studies. If you decide to participate in the first study, you will complete five visits over a one- to two-month period. If you participate in the second study, you will complete six visits over a two-week period. If you participate in both studies, you will complete a total of nine visits.
Participants will complete a series of visits with MRI brain imaging, non-invasive brain stimulation (called transcranial magnetic stimulation or TMS), physiological monitoring (i.e., skin conductance, heart rate, respiration, skin temperature, and blood pressure), blood draws, and physical performance testing.
IRB:STUDY18100048 - Using Non-Invasive Brain Stimulation to Enhance Physiological Resilience
MEET THE RESEARCHER
Shawn Flanagan, PhD, MHA, is an assistant professor of Sports Medicine and Nutrition at the University of Pittsburgh Neuromuscular Research Laboratory and Warrior Human Performance Research Center. His background is in neuroscience and physiology with training in brain stimulation, imaging, neuroendocrinology, and physical exercise. Dr. Flanagan’s research interests focus on neurobiological factors that contribute to human performance optimization, stress, resilience, and injury.