Current Research

rTMS Study

Brain with Puzzle Pieces

Eligibility: 

  • Between 12-18 years old
  • Diagnosis of Major Depressive Disorder (MDD)
  • Experiencing a current MDD episode with a duration of ≥ 4 weeks and ≤3 years
  • Resistance to treatment (i.e. failure to respond to at least 1 antidepressant treatment

About the Study: 

Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is a non-surgical procedure used in the treatment of adults with depression that has not responded to anti-depressant medication (treatment-resistant depression; TRD). TMS uses fluctuating magnetic fields to increase frontal lobe brain activity with the goal of reducing depression symptoms. It was approved by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration in 2008 to treat TRD in adults. Very little research has been done testing this intervention for treatment-resistant depression in young people. The purpose of this study is to measure the feasibility, tolerability, and efficacy of a 6-week course of repetitive TMS in adolescents with depression that has not improved after treatment with at least one antidepressant medication. We are also studying the neurobiological mechanisms and predictors of response to rTMS with Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI).

For more information, please visit our page dedicated to the rTMS Study

BRIDGES Study

teen girls

Eligibility: 

  • 12-14 years old
  • Female 
  • Already had first menstrual cycle 

About the Study: 

During adolescence, the brain undergoes major change. We are working to better understand brain development during early-to-mid adolescence. In particular, this study is focused on the brain systems that manage negative emotion, self-understanding, and impulse-control. BRIDGES is working to understand how self-injury (a common problem in teenagers) influences brain development by studying the change in the brain and behavior patterns over time in girls with versus without self-injury. 

For more information, please visit our page dedicated to the BRIDGES Study

Mindful Breathing and tDCS

Mindfulness picture

Eligibility: 

  • Young people aged 16-22 with current depression symptoms

About the Study: 

The goal of this research study conducted at the University of Minnesota is to develop a new intervention that may help young people with depression. This new intervention combines two techniques designed to enhance healthy brain functioning: 1) mindful breathing training, a type of meditation, and 2) tDCS, a type of non-invasive brain stimulation.

For more information, please visit our page dedicated to the Mindful Breathing and tDCS Study