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Research Programs & Studies

Research Programs

Bipolar Disorder Research Program

Our program is dedicated to developing and evaluating novel, efficacious treatments for Bipolar Disorder. Our research focuses on applying cutting-edge neuroimaging techniques and neurobehavioral testing to better understand the neurobiology of Bipolar Disorder, and commonly co-occurring conditions, as well as the mechanisms by which potential treatments for Bipolar Disorder may provide therapeutic change. Participation in our studies is strictly confidential and compensation is provided for participants’ time and effort. Learn more about the

Brain Stimulation Lab (BSL)

The BSL, started by Dr. Mark George over 20 years ago, carries out world leading translational research in depression, largely focused on discovering and refining new brain stimulation treatments. In 1993 while at the NIMH, Dr. George discovered that daily prefrontal rTMS over several weeks could treat depression, and with his move to MUSC in 1995, he has worked to grow the science of TMS, both in terms of how it works in the brain, and in critically evaluating its therapeutic applications, especially in the area of treating depression. Daily prefrontal TMS was FDA approved for treating depression in October 2008, and MUSC has clinically offered TMS since that date. The BSL was the main site in the pivotal NIH TMS study and recently investigated its effectiveness in the VA population through a VA cooperative study. The group continues to refine TMS methods for treating depression. In June 1998 at MUSC, the BSL also helped pioneer another new treatment for resistant depression, vagus nerve stimulation (VNS), which was FDA approved in 2006. The BSL commonly uses brain imaging to inform brain stimulation methods. Finally, the BSL has an active ECT service and is performing innovative research with a new form of ECT called focal electrically applied seizure therapy (FEAST).

Women’s Reproductive Behavioral Health Program

Our program is dedicated to supporting women’s transition into motherhood so they can emerge as strong leaders in their family and community. The mission of our program is to improve the emotional health and well-being of pregnant and postpartum women through clinical care, education, teaching and clinical research. We have expertise in the treatment of mental health problems during pregnancy and postpartum and provide clinical services that are easily accessible, stigma free and confidential. For more information on clinical services, please visit MUSC Women's Health.

Research Studies

rTMS for Adolescent Depression

Contact: 843-792-5702

Description: We are investigating the safety and efficacy of repetitive TMS as a treatment for adolescent depression for those aged 12 to 21 years old. We are seeking adolescents of this age range who have not received sufficient benefit from at least one antidepressant medication trial. TMS is currently FDA approved for treating adult depression.

rTMS for Bipolar Depression

Contact: 843-792-5702

Description: We are investigating repetitive TMS as a treatment for bipolar depression in conjunction with mood stabilizers in adults aged 22 to 68 years old. We are seeking treatment refractory patients with bipolar disorder. TMS is currently FDA approved for treating adult depression.