Deep brain stimulation (DBS) in psychiatric illnesses has been clinically tested over the past 20 years. The clinical application of DBS to the superolateral branch of the medial forebrain bundle in treatment-resistant depressed patients—one of several targets under investigation—has shown to be promising in a number of uncontrolled open label trials. However, there are remain numerous questions that need to be investigated to understand and optimize the clinical use of DBS in depression, including, for example, the relationship between the symptoms, the biological substrates/projections and the stimulation itself. In the context of precision and customized medicine, the current paper focuses on clinical and experimental research of medial forebrain bundle DBS in depression or in animal models of depression, demonstrating how clinical and scientific progress can work in tandem to test the therapeutic value and investigate the mechanisms of this experimental treatment. As one of the hypotheses is that depression engenders changes in the reward and motivational networks, the review looks at how stimulation of the medial forebrain bundle impacts the dopaminergic system.
- brain reward system
- clinical and pre-clinical studies
- major depressive disorder
ASJC Scopus subject areas