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Precise brain mapping can improve response to deep brain stimulation in depression
Date:4/28/2014

with treatment-resistant depression who previously received SCC DBS at Emory. Computerized tomography was used post-operatively to localize the DBS contacts on each electrode. The activation volumes around the active contacts were modeled for each patient. Sophisticated neuroimaging combined with computerized analysis was used to derive and visualize the specific white matter fibers affected by ongoing DBS.

Therapeutic outcome was evaluated at six months and at two years. Six of the patients had responded positively to DBS at six months, and by two years these six plus six more patients responded positively. All shared common involvement of three distinct white matter bundles: the cingulum, the forceps minor and the uncinate fasciculus.

The conversion of six of the patients who were not responding at six months to being responders at two years was explained by the inclusion of all three bundles due to changes in stimulation settings. Non-responders at both six months and two years showed incomplete involvement of these three tracts.

"In the past, placement of the electrode relied solely on anatomical landmarks with contact selection and stimulation parameter changes based on a trial-and-error method," says Patricio Riva-Posse, MD, Emory assistant professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences and first author of the paper. "These results suggest that clinical outcome can be significantly influenced by optimally modulating the response network defined by tractography. This obviously will need to be tested prospectively in additional subjects here and by other teams exploring the use of this experimental treatment."

This new information will allow us to develop a refined algorithm for guiding surgical implantation of electrodes and optimizing the response through fine tuning of stimulation parameters," notes Mayberg. "That said, improving anatomical precision alone doesn't account for all non-responders, so that is an important
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Contact: Robin Reese
404-727-9371
Emory Health Sciences
Source:Eurekalert

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