TIRR Memorial Hermann, a rehabilitation hospital in Houston, Texas, will be the only hospital in Texas to participate in a clinical trial addressing a change in therapeutic practice of stroke rehabilitation, according to a Bio News Texas news report. Conducted by Nexstim, the randomized and sham-controlled trial is expected to determine the therapeutic effects of navigated repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) in the rehabilitation of stroke patients. The therapy combines occupational therapy with navigated transcranial magnetic stimulation (nTMS).

The Bio News Texas news report indicates that 12 top rehabilitation sites across the United States will be conducting the 2-year trial, which is called the Navigated Inhibitory rTMS in Contralesional Hemisphere Evaluation (NICHE) trial. Gerard Francisco, MD, chief medical officer at TIRR Memorial Hermann, will be the principal investigator. Along with co-investigator Nuray Yozbatiran, PhD, PT, he has stated that the Nexstim study will tell researchers if non-invasive brain stimulation is able to magnify the benefits of occupational therapy for people suffering arm and hand weakness as a result of stroke, as noted on the Bio News Texas news report.

Francisco says, “This will be a great demonstration of how ‘traditional’ therapies and modern technology can work in synergy to facilitate recovery from stroke. This technology is a way to directly affect changes in the brain damaged by a stroke, rather than merely teaching a person to compensate for lost function.”

The Bio News Texas news report notes that Richard Harvey, MD, of the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago (RIC), developed the protocol with Nexstim and conducted the single center trial. Janne Huhtala, CEO of Nexstim, states, “The trial results are showing great potential for non-invasive brain modulation and the difference Nexstim is providing is the proven navigation to enable this approach. We are dedicated to take this further and bring this to the market for the patient care.”

Source: Bio News Texas