Flipping a Diagnostic Marker into a Therapeutic Tool with TMS

Project: Research project

Description

The search for new therapies for severe mental illness such as schizophrenia has curtailed sharply because suitable targets remain elusive. In contrast, endophenotype biomarkers have been found that show reasonable sensitivity and selectivity for specific disorders. In schizophrenia, one such biomarker is prepulse inhibition (PPI). In the PPI paradigm, a very brief soft sound (prepulse) diminishes the startle response to a subsequent brief loud sound (pulse). PPI in general reflects how the brain protects salient sensory data from disruption by ongoing neural activity. Selective attention contributes to PPI, and is frequently assessed by attentional modulation by the prepulse (AMP) paradigms. Both AMP and selective
attention, and specifically salience detection are conspicuously impaired in schizophrenia and AMP has emerged as a stronger biomarker for schizophrenia spectrum disorders than generic PPI.
StatusActive
Effective start/end date1/1/1712/31/19

Funding

  • Northwestern Memorial Hospital ((NMH) EXHIBIT B.5)

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Schizophrenia
Biomarkers
Startle Reflex
Endophenotypes
Therapeutics
Prepulse Inhibition
Brain