Lecture by Amit Etkin, MD, PhD, Stanford University
- Thursday, May 2, 2019 at 7:00pm
- Strand Union Building, Procrastinator Theater - view map
Amit Etkin, MD, PhD, a professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University, will present "A “Circuits-First” Approach to Mental Illness."
Over the past two decades, neuroimaging studies have defined a set of distributed brain systems that contribute to cognition, emotion, mood and other mental processes. Perturbations in these circuits have been identified in different ways across psychiatric disorders. The challenge ahead of us is how to use these insights to: 1) understand the nature of neural circuit deficits in mental illnesses and their relevance for existing treatments, and 2) to develop novel circuit-based therapeutics. Dr. Etkin will discuss work in the lab defining the neural circuit abnormalities associated with psychiatric disorders as a whole, as well as specific changes associated with particular mood and anxiety disorders (and subgroups within them). He will also examine the mechanisms of current medication, psychotherapy and brain stimulation treatments within the context of a circuit-based understanding. Finally, Dr. Etkin will describe new methods for direct and non-invasive probing and manipulation of circuits and insights that this brings for the development of new circuit-targeting therapeutics. Together, these data suggest that we are now on the brink of innovations in "rational" circuit-based diagnosis and treatments for mental illness. Success down this path will take us beyond use of symptom checklists for diagnosis, and one-size-fits all treatment with the psychopharmacological and psychotherapeutic tools currently available.
Amit Etkin is a professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and a member of the Wu Tsai Neuroscience Institute at Stanford University, as well as an Investigator at the Palo Alto VA. He has received multiple awards, most notably the NIH Director’s Pioneer Award in 2017, and the Joel Elkes Research Award from the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology. Dr. Etkin is trained as both as a neuroscientist and psychiatrist. The overarching aim of the Etkin lab is to understand the neural basis of emotional disorders and their treatment, and to leverage this knowledge to better understand how the brain works and to develop novel treatment interventions. In support of this goal, Dr. Etkin also collaborates with neuroscientists, engineers, psychologists, physicians and others to establish a new intellectual, scientific and clinical paradigm for understanding and manipulating human brain circuits in healthy individuals and for treating psychiatric disease.
This lecture is presented by Montana State University's Department of Cell Biology and Neuroscience and the Center for Mental Health Research and Recovery with support from the College of Letters and Science.
- Department of Cell Biology and Neuroscience