There’s an exciting new clinical trial beginning in January 2019 that is currently seeking participants. The study will look to see whether combining speech therapy with brain stimulation can improve language outcomes in persons with aphasia due to stroke.

The Grant

Doctors Branch Coslett and Roy Hamilton from The Laboratory for Cognition and Neural Stimulation (LCNS) at the University of Pennsylvania have been awarded a grant from the National Institutes of Deafness and Communication Disorders (NIDCD)* to pursue a 5-year Phase 2 clinical trial testing whether TMS combined with speech therapy is an effective treatment for persons with chronic aphasia.

The Study

Participants accepted into the study in Pennsylvania will receive TMS combined with speech therapy Monday through Friday for two weeks. Researchers will then follow-up with each participant three and six months later in order to assess their language abilities. This is a randomized controlled clinical trial, which means that although everyone will receive speech therapy, some participants will receive brain stimulation and others will not. Neither the participants nor the researchers will know which group they are in until the study is over.

About Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS)

TMS is a non-invasive brain stimulation approach that does not require needles, sedation, or surgery. Stimulation with TMS involves using an electromagnet placed over the scalp to generate current in a small region of the brain (about 1 cm x 1 cm) immediately underneath. This allows for portions of the brain to activate, meaning that brain cells in the affected area fire. TMS has been approved by the FDA to treat depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and migraine headaches.

Want to Join the Study?

Specific questions should be directed at the creators of the study. The NAA does not have additional information.

This study is looking for adults with aphasia due to a stroke that occurred more than 6 months ago. They are currently beginning their recruitment process so the study can begin in January 2019. Interested persons should contact Jonathan Magill, Study Coordinator at or 215‐573‐4336.

Want more information about LCNS research? Go to their site or follow them on Twitter.

*Study supported by NIDCD/NIH Grant: 1Ro1 DC16800-A1