From: Chambard Torkelson, Vicki L. [mailto:[log in to unmask]]
Sent: February 15, 2011 17:32
Subject: Mayo Clinic Researchers Develop WINCS Device to Measure Brain
Chemistry during Deep Brain Stimulation
February 15, 2011
e-mail: [log in to unmask]
For Immediate Release
Mayo Clinic Researchers Develop WINCS Device to Measure Brain Chemistry
during Deep Brain Stimulation
ROCHESTER, Minnesota -- <http://www.mayoclinic.org/about/> Mayo Clinic
researchers have concluded that, through deep brain stimulation, a
<http://www.mayoclinic.org/news2008-rst/4956.html> Wireless Instantaneous
Neurotransmitter Concentration System (WINCS) can detect and measure
serotonin levels in the brain. The findings suggest that in the future such
measurements of serotonin may help establish a therapeutic mechanism of deep
brain stimulation for psychiatric disease. This study was published in the
September 2010 issue of the Journal of Neurosurgery.
Previously, the researchers found, also through deep brain stimulation, that
WINCS detected and measured dopamine levels in the brain.
<http://www.mayoclinic.org/depression/> Major depressive disorder is the
second most disabling condition in the developed world, with lifetime
prevalence in the United States of 17 percent. Serotonin is a
neurotransmitter in the brain that is thought to play a key role in
controlling depression. Using deep brain stimulation, neurosurgeons can help
patients with essential tremor, Parkinson's disease, movement disorders, and
now, based on this study, psychiatric disorders.
"In a previous study, in order to better understand the mechanism of deep
brain stimulation, we created WINCS, a new device that successfully measured
such neurotransmitter levels as dopamine and norepinephrine on a
second-by-second basis," says
<http://mayoresearch.mayo.edu/mayo/research/staff/Lee_KH.cfm> Kendall Lee,
M.D., Ph.D., a Mayo Clinic <http://www.mayoclinic.org/neurosurgery-rst/>
neurosurgeon. "In this experiment, we wanted to try to measure serotonin,
which is very important in the mechanism of depression and its treatment.
This study shows that WINCS can measure serotonin with a technology called
fast-scan cyclic voltammetry, which is an electrochemical method of being
able to measure serotonin in real time in the living brain."
For this study, researchers collaborated with Mayo Clinic's
<http://www.mayoclinic.org/engineering-jobs-rst/> Division of Engineering
and Paul Garris, Ph.D., at Illinois State University, who helped design and
test the WINCS device. "We were able to take the laboratory method of
neurotransmitter detection and create a miniaturized, wireless,
computer-controlled device that allowed the detection to occur in real
time," says Kevin Bennet, chair, Mayo Clinic's division of Engineering. "We
took the technique of fast-scan cyclic voltammetry, created real-time
control and reporting, and converted it into something that can be used in
animals and humans."
While the study was conducted on animals, Dr. Lee is confident that the
technology will be successful in humans. "Using this device, we can now do
real-time serotonin measurement, so we're hopeful that in the near future
we're able to use WINCS to measure serotonin in the human brain," he says.
"What is significant is that if we can measure serotonin, perhaps we can
modulate it. This opens the door for even more exciting areas of medicine.
By having technology such as WINCS, rather than just diagnosing or measuring
neurotransmitters, you can use this as a therapeutic tool to more precisely
regulate brain neurotransmitter levels," says Dr. Lee.
Other members of the Mayo Clinic research team included Christopher
Criessenauer, M.D.; Su-Youne Chang, Ph.D.; Susannah Tye, Ph.D.; and
# # #
About Mayo Clinic
Mayo Clinic is a non-profit worldwide leader in medical care, research, and
education for people from all walks of life. For more information, visit
<http://www.mayoclinic.org/about/> www.mayoclinic.org/about/ and
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