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CLUE-BGD Report Summary

Project ID: 322495
Funded under: FP7-IDEAS-ERC
Country: Israel

Mid-Term Report Summary - CLUE-BGD (Closing the Loop between Understanding and Effective Treatment of the Basal Ganglia and their Disorders)

Deep brain stimulation (DBS) is a common treatment for human patients with advanced Parkinson's disease. We aim at improving and increasing the scope of DBS therapy by using closed loop DBS methods. The first period of this project has been devoted for establishing the normal reference target for the closed-loop algorithms during different stages of wake/sleep cycle.
We also recorded the neural activity in the basal ganglia of Parkinsonian subjects and established the characteristics of the basal ganglia abnormal activity in the Parkinsonian state. Although usually believed to be on the two extreme sides of a spectrum, we see a lot of similarities between the negative symptoms of Parkinson's disease (akinesia/bradykinesia – lack and slowness of automatic movements) and schizophrenia (lack of motivation and social apathy). Our working hypothesis therefore holds that the similarity of the symptoms should reflect a similarity of their basal ganglia neural signature. To verify this, we have searched and verified an animal model for schizophrenia (by continuous and chronic treatment with PCP, an NMDA antagonist, also known as "angel dust").
This background will be used in the second period of our project to close the loop for DBS in the animal models of Parkinson's disease and schizophrenia. If successful, this study should pave the way towards automatic adaptive closed-loop DBS system. This could change the life of millions of human patients with devastating basal ganglia and dopamine related disorders.

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