Mental Health News – University of California researchers have created a landmark by successfully treating a patient with chronic depression with an on-demand brain stimulation method.
In the new study, researchers utilize new advances in neuroscience to treat different psychiatric disorders. They victoriously treated chronic depression by tapping into particular brain circuits that are involved in the depression brain patterns. The researchers have also reset those brain circuits by using an alternative of a pacemaker for the brain.
In 2014, the project started with a large and multicenter effort sponsored under President Obama’s BRAIN (Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies) Initiative. Renowned neurosurgeon Edward Chang with his associates conducted several studies to better understand depression and anxiety in those patients who were undergoing surgical treatment for epilepsy. The team discovered new brain regions that can reduce depression symptoms when stimulated.
“We’ve developed a precision-medicine approach that has successfully managed our patient’s treatment-resistant depression by identifying and modulating the circuit in her brain that’s uniquely associated with her symptoms,” said Andrew Krystal, Ph.D., professor of psychiatry and member of the UCSF Weill Institute for Neurosciences.
The discovery of a neural biomarker that indicates the onset of depression symptoms made this proof-of-principal trial successful. The research team has even developed a new DBS device that creates on-demand and immediate therapy for severe depression patients.
“This new study puts nearly all the critical findings of our previous research together into one complete treatment aimed at alleviating depression,” said Chang, co-senior author of this study published in Nature Medicine.
Despite the incredible success, FDA approval for this treatment is still awaited. However, the research has enlightened new paths of treating chronic depression.
To Know More You May Refer To:
Scangos, K.W., Khambhati, A.N., Daly, P.M. et al. Closed-loop neuromodulation in an individual with treatment-resistant depression. Nat Med (2021). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41591-021-01480-w