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Director’s Blog

Look who is getting into mental health research

Tech companies are bringing their ability to extract knowledge from data to health care. Dr. Insel gives some examples that show the potential of new tech-based approaches to diagnosis and treatment.

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August at NIMH

Despite its reputation as a month for slowing down, August is busy at NIMH as the end of the fiscal year approaches. Dr. Insel takes time out to give an update on NIMH-supported clinical trials.

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The Brain’s Critical Balance

The BRAIN Initiative is supporting scientists aiming to understand how the 86 billion neurons in the brain act together to enable consciousness and behavior. Dr. Insel gives a snapshot of recent work and its implications for understanding normal and disordered brain function.

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Quality Counts

The Institute of Medicine has issued a report looking at the effectiveness of psychosocial treatments for mental disorders. Dr. Insel blogs about the need to ensure that consumers needing treatment receive evidence-based therapies.

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Viewing the STARRS Data

Last week, two important research events unfolded without fanfare and without headlines. June 30 marked the end of the first phase of Army STARRS, the largest study of mental health risk and resilience ever conducted among military personnel. July 1 marked the release of Army STARRS data for use by the broad scientific community.

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Accentuate the Positive: Rhythm and Blues

Researchers were able to reverse some of the behavioral effects of stress in mice by stimulating brain cells activated by pleasure. Dr. Insel describes the work and its implications for understanding depression.

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Early BRAIN Breakthroughs

Dr. Insel blogs about recent breakthroughs from the BRAIN Initiative, which show the promise of what we can accomplish with investment focused on new tool development to better  understand and treat brain disorders.

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Something Interesting is Happening

Dr. Insel discusses how the Precision Medicine Initiative will create a new kind of patient-driven research, which is similar to how innovative companies have created a new share economy based on trust.

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Training for the Future

Dr. Insel talks about the importance of incorporating neuroscience in the training of psychiatric residents and a new initiative to do that. The clinician of 2025 will need to know about the science of the brain.

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Mental Health Awareness Month: By the Numbers

Statistics paint a picture of the impact of mental illness in the United States; Dr. Insel reviews the numbers for Mental Health Awareness Month.

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