• Research Highlights

    The Tourette Syndrome and Tic Disorder Clinic at Cincinnati Children’s is committed to patient care, education and research. Research holds the key to improving outcomes. For example, it may provide an opportunity for individuals to learn more about themselves and their medical conditions. Research can also help others in the future, and many children and adults who participate in studies feel good about the time they spent in a study. In our research program, we also try to teach brain science to research participants and let them know how important their contribution has been.

    Persons who participate in research need not be severely affected by a medical condition. Sometimes, it is important to involve individuals with mild symptoms. Sometimes unaffected individuals may also participate.

    At Cincinnati Children’s we do unique research and we also participate in research with other major research centers. Our research on tics and Tourette syndrome involves a number of unanswered questions:

    • Tourette syndrome runs in families. What are the genes that cause it?
    • What makes brains tic? Are the brain circuits involved in movement or sensation “wired” differently?
    • Why do persons with tics also have ADHD and OCD? How are these problems related in the biology of the brain?
    • How can we best treat tics, as well as ADHD and OCD in persons with Tourette syndrome? What medications, types of medications or behavioral therapies are safe and effective?

    We are members of the Tourette Syndrome Study Group and Tourette Syndrome Clinical Trials Consortium. Gilbert is also a member of the Tourette Syndrome Association-USA Medical Advisory Board. TSA-USA funds research into causes and better treatments for Tourette syndrome. For more information on research, contact us at tics@cchmc.org.

    • The genetics (inheritance) of Tourette syndrome, funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH)
    • Motor skill development and brain motor-cortex function in children with ADHD compared to typically developing children, funded by the NIH. This research uses Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation.
    • Changes in behavior and brain motor-cortex function in children with treated for ADHD with atomoxetine, funded by the NIH. This research uses Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation.
    • Behavioral treatments for Tourette Syndrome, funded by the Tourette Syndrome Association USA (TSA-USA).
    • “Neuroplasticity” in the motor system in Tourette syndrome – how the brain’s neurons modify connections in the movement system and how this may relate to symptoms of Tourette syndrome, funded by the TSA-USA. This research uses Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation.
    • New forms of medication for Tourette syndrome symptoms in children and adults, funded by pharmaceutical companies.
    1. Ercan-Sencicek AG, Stillman AA, Ghosh AK et al, L-Histidine Decarboxylase and Tourette’s Syndrome. New England Journal of Medicine 2010; 362:1901-8.
    2. Dalal P, Leslie ND, Lindor NM, Gilbert DL, Espay AJ. Motor tics, stereotypies, and self-flagellation in Primrose Syndrome. Neurology 2010; 75:284-286.
    3. Wu S, Gilbert DL, “Gilles de la Tourette Syndrome.” In Conn’s Current Therapy 2010. Ed. Bope ET, Rakel RE, Kellerman R. W.B. Saunders/ Elsevier, Orlando, FL. 2010.
    4. Clarke RA, Fang ZM, Diwan A, Gilbert DL. Tourette Syndrome and Klippel-Feil Anomaly in a child with Chromosome 22q11 Duplication. Case Reports in Medicine 2009. doi:10.1155/2009/361518.
    5. Degrauw RS, Li JZ, Gilbert DL. Body Mass Index Changes and Chronic Neuroleptics for Tourette Syndrome. Pediatric Neurology 2009. 4:183-6.
    6. Lit L, Enstrom A, Sharp FS, Gilbert DL. Age-related gene expression in Tourette syndrome. Journal of Psychiatric Research. 2009. 43:319-30.
    7. Martino D, Dale RC, Gilbert DL, Giovannoni G, Leckman JF. Immunopathogenic Mechanisms in Tourette Syndrome: A critical review. Movement Disorders 2009. 24:1267-79.
    8. Gilbert DL, Kurlan R. PANDAS: horse or zebra? Neurology 2009;73:1252-1253.
    9. Kurlan R, Johnson D, Kaplan EL, and the Tourette Syndrome Study Group. Streptococcal Infection and Exacerbations of Childhood Tics and Obsessive-Compulsive Symptoms: A Prospective, Blinded Cohort Study. Pediatrics 2008. 121:1188-1197.
    10. Singer HS, Gause C, Morris C, Lopez P, and the Tourette Syndrome Study Group. Serial Immune Markers Do Not Correlate with Clinical Exacerbations in Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders Associated with Streptococcal Infections. Pediatrics 2008. 121:1198-1205.
    11. Spencer TJ, Sallee FR, Gilbert DL, et al. Atomoxetine Treatment of ADHD in Children With Comorbid Tourette Syndrome. J Atten Disord 2008;11:470-481.
  • Gilbert Laboratory

    Dr. GIlbert with a patient.

    Learn more about the extensive research being done in the Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation Laboratory of Dr. Donald Gilbert, MD, MSc.

    TMS Lab