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Adults: Depression

Join a Research Study: Enrolling nationally from around the country

Depression, Experimental ECT and Brain Imaging

This research study is testing a new type of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) to see if it is a safe and effective method to rapidly reduce and treat depression. With this new type of ECT we decrease the strength of the electric pulse to see if that causes less memory side effects than regular ECT.  We use brain imaging to better understand how the new treatment affects the brain and how this relates to changes in depression or memory.

This inpatient study is enrolling adults with major depressive disorder, ages 22-70. Participants will be free of other serious medical conditions and have tried other treatments and failed to improve. Research participation is 4- to 12-weeks and includes 7 sessions of the experimental ECT, brain imaging, transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) assessment, and memory and thinking assessments. All research participants will receive 10-12 sessions of regular ECT after the experimental ECT part is over.

The study is conducted at the NIH Clinical Center in Bethesda, MD. There is no cost to participate and compensation is provided. This study enrolls eligible participants from across the USA. Travel arrangements are provided, and costs are covered by NIMH (arrangements vary by distance). After completing the study, participants receive short-term follow-up care at the NIH while transitioning back to a provider.

To find out if you qualify, email NIMH or call 1-301-480-4244 [TTY: 1-866-411-1010].

Study Identifiers

  • NIMH Protocol Number: 19M0073
  • ClinicalTrials.gov Study Number: 03895658

Join a Research Study: Enrolling nationally from around the country

Depression, Repeated Doses of Ketamine, and Neuroimaging

The purpose of this study is to evaluate the rapid and sustained antidepressant effects of repeated doses of ketamine in the brain. We want to learn how ketamine affects areas of the brain important in regulating mood and if there are unique signatures that could help predict who may respond to the drug. Also, we want to see if repeated doses of ketamine are safe and effective in treating the symptoms of depression.

We are enrolling eligible adults, ages 18 to 65 with major depressive disorder. This inpatient study lasts 14-20 weeks and procedures include a medication taper and drug-free period, taking repeated doses of the research drug, two infusions of placebo, multiple brain imaging scans, transcranial magnetic stimulation, and psychological testing. After completing the study, participants can receive short-term care at the NIH while transitioning back to a provider.

The study is conducted at the NIH Clinical Center in Bethesda, MD. There is no cost to participate and compensation is provided. This study enrolls eligible participants from across the USA. Travel arrangements are provided and costs are covered by NIMH (arrangements vary by distance). After completing the study, participants receive short-term follow-up care at the NIH while transitioning back to a provider.

First steps to participate include, calling NIMH, learning study details, asking about your eligibility, and consenting to participate.

To find out if you qualify, email NIMH or call 1-877-646-3644 (1-877-MIND-NIH) [TTY: 1-866-411-1010].

Study Identifiers

  • NIMH Protocol Number: 17-M-0060
  • ClinicalTrials.gov Study Number: 03065335
  • Principal Investigator: Carlos Zarate Jr, M.D.
  • Join a Research Study: Enrolling nationally from around the country

    Depression, TMS, Psychotherapy and Brain Function

    This research study seeks depressed participants to test the effects of the combination of repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) and psychotherapy on brain function.

    This study is enrolling eligible adults ages 18-65 with major depressive disorder, who are free of other serious medical conditions. If you are currently taking anti-depressants, you may still be eligible.

    This inpatient and/or outpatient study involves daily visits for 8 weeks followed by once-monthly visits for 3 months. Participation includes research evaluations, brain scans, and active TMS and psychotherapy, or inactive TMS and psychotherapy. Those who received inactive TMS may receive active TMS after the experimental phase is completed. After completing the study, participants receive short-term care at the NIH while transitioning back to a provider. The 3 monthly follow up visits can be conducted via telephone.

    All clinical evaluations, research tasks and visits are free of cost. Participants are compensated for research procedures. The study is conducted at the NIH in Bethesda, Maryland, and is enrolling participants nationwide, from across the United States. Travel arrangements are provided and costs are covered by NIMH (arrangements vary by distance).

    To find out if you qualify, email NIMH or call 1-301-827-1874 [TTY: 1-866-411-1010].

    Study Identifiers

    • NIMH Protocol Number: 17-M-0147
    • ClinicalTrials.gov Study Number: 03289923

    Join a Research Study: Enrolling locally from the Washington, D.C. metro region

    Depression and Brain Changes in Fear and Anxiety

    The purpose of this research study is to better understand how the brain and body work when a person with depression feels anxious.

    Research Participation Includes: 1-3 outpatient visits, computer tasks, and exposure to unpleasant stimuli and a brain scan (functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI).

    Who Can Participate: Depressed adults between the ages of 18-50, who are free of psychiatric medications and certain medical conditions.

    You may not be eligible is you are pregnant, have a pacemaker, current alcohol or substance abuse problems, heart disease, neurological disease, or any health problems that would interfere with the study or make it unsafe for you.

    The study is conducted at the NIH Clinical Center in Bethesda, Maryland. The testing sessions will take up to 2.5 hours. There is no cost to participate and compensation is provided. This study does not include treatment.

    First Steps to Participate in Research: Learn study details, ask about your eligibility, and consent to participate.

    To find out if you qualify, email NIMH or call 1-301-451-5087 [TTY: 1-866-411-1010].

    Study Identifiers

    • NIMH Protocol Number: 02-M-0321
    • ClinicalTrials.gov Study Number: 00047853
  • Principal Investigator: Christian Grillon, Ph.D.
  • Join a Research Study: Enrolling nationally from around the country

    Depression Evaluations for Medication and Brain Imaging Studies

    This study screens for various inpatient and outpatient studies that investigate the brain and experimental medications (such as ketamine) to quickly lift severe and hard-to-treat depressive symptoms.

    Participation may include outpatient visits or inpatient stays lasting 4 to 20 weeks at the NIH Clinical Center, Bethesda, MD. Procedures may include: tapering off current psychiatric medications, a medication-free period, oral or intravenous medication versus placebo, and brain scans. You may also qualify for other studies that have different requirements and lengths of stay.

    Participants must be ages 18-70 and free of serious medical conditions. These studies may enroll eligible participants from across the USA. Travel arrangements and compensation are provided. There is no cost to participate.

    First steps to participate include, calling NIMH, learning study details, asking about your eligibility, and consenting to participate.

    To find out if you qualify, email NIMH or call 1-877-646-3644 (1-877-MIND-NIH) [TTY: 1-866-411-1010].

    Study Identifiers

    • NIMH Protocol Number: 01-M-0254
    • ClinicalTrials.gov Study Number: 00024635
  • Principal Investigator: Carlos Zarate Jr, M.D.
  • Join a Research Study: Enrolling locally from the Washington, D.C. metro region

    NIMH Family Study of Health and Behavior

    The major goal of this study is to examine how mood disorders, anxiety disorders and migraine run in families. We study both genetic and environmental factors that may contribute to these conditions.

    We recruit people ages 21 and over with depression, manic-depression, social phobia, panic, generalized anxiety, migraine and people without any of these problems. Participants are interviewed about medical and mental symptoms and problems, their health behavior, social factors and a variety of other measures related to their health and behavior. Family members ages 8 and over will also be asked to participate. Some families will be invited to participate in further studies of biological and genetic factors.

    To find out if you qualify, email NIMH or call 1-877-250-1560 [TTY: 1-866-411-1010].

    Study Identifiers

    • NIMH Protocol Number: 03-M-0211
    • ClinicalTrials.gov Study Number: 00071786
  • Principal Investigator: Kathleen R Merikangas, Ph.D.
  • Join a Research Study: Enrolling nationally from around the country

    Still Depressed? NIH Research Study is Testing a New Antidepressant

    Antidepressant drugs can take weeks or months to work. They also do not work in up to 30% of people with depression. Researchers are studying new treatments. This research study is testing an experimental drug, TS-161, to see if it helps improve depression symptoms.

    If you are:

    • Currently depressed even after trying antidepressants
    • Between 18-65 years old
    • Otherwise healthy

    then you may be able to participate.

    Participants will take a placebo for three weeks, and then take the study drug for three weeks, or vice versa. Neither you nor the researchers will know which one you are taking.

    The study also includes:

    • Brain scans
    • Blood draws
    • Psychological evaluations
    • If necessary, carefully stopping your current medications

    Participation will include an inpatient stay and may also include outpatient visits and/or telehealth services. The entire study will last 12 to 16 weeks. Compensation up to $2,210 is provided. The study takes place at the NIH Clinical Center in Bethesda, Maryland. We will work with you to make travel arrangements. We will pay for your travel costs, and arrangements vary by distance and circumstance.

    To find out if you qualify visit: nimhmoodresearch.ctss.nih.gov.

    Link to research study team

    To find out if you qualify, email NIMH or call 1-877-646-3644 (1-877-MIND-NIH) [TTY: 1-866-411-1010].

    Study Identifiers

    • NIMH Protocol Number: 000101
    • ClinicalTrials.gov Study Number: 04821271
  • Principal Investigator: Carlos Zarate Jr, M.D.
  • Join a Research Study: Enrolling nationally from around the country

    Suicide and the Brain

    National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) researchers seek adults 18 to 70, who have a history of attempted suicide but are not currently suicidal, for a study of suicide and brain function. Participation includes up to seven days as an inpatient at the NIH Clinical Center in Bethesda, Maryland. Procedures include blood tests, medical evaluations, brain imaging, sleep studies and psychiatric interviews. Participants do not need to stop their current medications. Compensation and transportation are provided. Pregnant women and individuals with serious medical conditions are not eligible.

    There is no cost to participate. We enroll eligible participants locally and from around the country. Travel arrangements are provided and costs are covered by NIMH (arrangements vary by distance). After completing the study, participants receive short-term follow-up care at the NIH while transitioning back to a provider.

    If you are in a crisis situation, contact your doctor's office, go to the nearest emergency room, or call 911 for emergency services. You can also call the toll-free, 24-hour hotline of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255). Your call will be connected to the crisis center nearest you. Trained staff can help talk you through your crisis.

    To find out if you qualify, email NIMH or call 1-877-646-3644 (1-877-MIND-NIH) [TTY: 1-866-411-1010].

    Study Identifiers

    • NIMH Protocol Number: 15-M-0188
    • ClinicalTrials.gov Study Number: 02543983
  • Principal Investigator: Carlos Zarate Jr, M.D.