Skip to main content
  • Research

Research Breakthroughs

Researchers find a way to reduce the side effects of deep brain stimulation

Deep brain stimulation (DBS) has emerged as an effective therapy for severe, treatment-resistant obsessive-compulsive disorder (trOCD) and has received approval under a humanitarian device exemption from the U.S. FDA. However, there are adverse side effects associated with this procedure.

An innovative machine-learning program reveals genes responsible for sex-specific differences in Alzheimer's disease symptoms

Alzheimer's Disease (AD) is a complex neurodegenerative illness with genetic and environmental origins. Females experience faster cognitive decline and cerebral atrophy than males, while males have greater mortality rates.

Distinct types of cerebellar neurons control motor and social behaviors

The cerebellum, a major part of the hindbrain in all vertebrates, is important for motor coordination, language acquisition, and regulating social and emotional behaviors.

Variants of MRTFB gene linked to novel neurodevelopmental disorder

Researchers at Baylor College of Medicine and the Jan and Dan Duncan Neurological Research Institute (Duncan NRI) at Texas Children's Hospital have linked specific variants or mutations of the gene myocardin-related transcription factor B (MRTFB) with a novel neurodevelopmental disorder.

Neurons lead the way in the development of astrocytes

Astrocytes play diverse roles that are vital for proper brain function. For instance, they support the activity of other essential brain cells, neurons; participate in the formation and function of synapses, essential neuron-to-neuron connections; release neurotransmitters, chemicals that mediate neuronal communication; and make the blood-brain barrier.

Openseize: a novel open-source software to analyze large-scale digital signals

Electroencephalography (EEG) is an indispensable tool used by clinicians to diagnose neurological diseases and by researchers to study and discover brain circuit mechanisms that support sensory, mnemonic, and cognitive processing. A new software - Openseize - created by Dr.

Study reveals a novel biomarker and a potentially improved therapy for Multiple Sclerosis and related neurodegenerative disorders

New research finds sphingosine 1-Phosphate produced by the degradation of myelin results in neuroinflammation and drugs that reduce its level can reverse pathologies in animal models of MS.

Texas Children’s and Baylor College researchers use innovative dual-target deep brain stimulation approach to treat patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder and Tourette Syndrome

Up to two-thirds of patients with Tourette syndrome (TS), a tic disorder characterized by sudden uncontrollable physical movements, also suffer from obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), a psychiatric condition characterized by intrusive thoughts and repetitive behaviors.

Imaging brain connections can predict improvements in obsessive-compulsive disorder patients after deep brain stimulation

Deep brain stimulation (DBS) is a promising therapy for treatment-resistant obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). A first-of-its-kind collaborative study led by researchers at Texas Children’s Hospital, Baylor College of Medicine, and Brigham & Women’s Hospital has found that mapping neural connections in the brains of OCD patients offers key insights that explain the observed improvements in their clinical outcomes after DBS.

The clinical presentation of IDDMSSD syndrome is likely associated with the molecular location of the mutation in the PAK1 gene

A recent study from Texas Children’s Hospital and Baylor College of Medicine has expanded the clinical spectrum of a new epileptic disorder called Intellectual Developmental Disorder with Macrocephaly, Seizures, and Speech Delay (IDDMSSD) with the identification of the first recurrently affected re

Progress in unlocking the brain's "code" for depression

A new study in the journal Biological Psychiatry published by Elsevier advances our understanding of the basic neural circuitry of depression in the human brain. The study was led by the Cain Labs director who is also a professor at Baylor College of Medicine and Duncan NRI investigator, Dr. Sameer Sheth, Dr. Wayne Goodman at Baylor College, and Dr. Nader Pouratian at UT Southwestern Medical Center.

A comprehensive circuit mapping study reveals many unexpected facts about the norepinephrine neurons in the brainstem

Norepinephrine-producing neurons in the locus coeruleus, a small nucleus in the brainstem, have been discovered to have two distinct types of cells that connect linearly via gap junctions - novel findings that have far-reaching implications for neuropsychiatric and neurodegenerative disorders

A study refines a molecular marker that accurately predicts the recurrence of aggressive meningiomas

Drs. Akash Patel and Tiemo Klisch, investigators at the Jan and Dan Duncan Neurological Research Institute (Duncan NRI) at Texas Children’s Hospital and faculty at Baylor College of Medicine, have found that the loss of a single copy of CDKNA/B genes can greatly accelerate the recurrence of aggressive meningiomas, portending a poor prognosis for this subset of patients.

The therapeutic window for Angelman syndrome patients may be broader than previously reported

Angelman syndrome is a rare neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by changes in brain structure, severe intellectual disability, impairments in speech, motor function, epilepsy, sleep, and unique behaviors that ­affects 1 in 10,000 to 24,000 people and for which no cure or treatment is currently available.

Texas Children’s and Baylor College scientists discover biomarkers and therapies for a group of fatal pediatric neurodegenerative disorders

An exciting study from Texas Children’s Hospital and Baylor College of Medicine has identified molecular biomarkers and two effective approaches to treat Infantile Neuroaxonal Dystrophy (INAD), a devastating and fatal pediatric neurodegenerative disorder.

New proteins involved in Spinocerebellar Ataxia provide insight into selective neuronal vulnerability

Neurodegenerative disorders like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease result from the loss of specific types of neurons due to abnormal accumulation of mutant proteins. Although specific brain regions have been found to be particularly vulnerable in each of these disorders, intriguingly, the disease-driving genes and the proteins they encode are usually broadly expressed and are known to function throughout the brain.

New tau regulators and therapeutic targets for neurodegenerative disorders discovered

Neurodegenerative diseases affect millions of people worldwide and as our life expectancy increases, more individuals are expected to be affected in the coming decades. Tauopathies such as Alzheimer’s disease are a class of neurodegenerative disorders involving a pathological accumulation of tau proteins which eventually results in massive loss of brain cells.

A new neurodevelopmental epilepsy disorder and its genetic cause discovered

Neurodevelopmental disorders (NDD) encompass highly prevalent conditions such as autism and epilepsy, with cognitive disabilities alone affecting 1-3% of the global population. Developmental epileptic encephalopathies (DEE) are NDD characterized by epilepsy and delayed development or loss of developmental skills. Although the prevalence of DEEs remains to be determined, studies estimate that single-gene epilepsies occur in around 1 in 2100 births annually.

Oxytocin drives development of neural connections in adult-born neurons

Learning a new task, mastering a musical instrument or being able to adapt to the constantly changing environment are all possible thanks to the brain’s plasticity, or its ability to modify itself by rearranging existing neural networks and forming new ones to acquire new functional properties. This also helps neural circuits to remain healthy, robust and stable.

A novel instructive role for the entorhinal cortex discovered

The study reveals an extraordinary and an unprecedented mechanism for synaptic plasticity.