Annals

Translational Neuroscience in Psychiatry: Light at the End of the Tunnel

Edited by Edited by Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences editorial staff
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Translational Neuroscience in Psychiatry: Light at the End of the Tunnel

Published: May 2015

Volume 1344

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Progress in developing new and more effective treatments for psychiatric disorders, particularly depression and schizophrenia, has been stymied in part because of a lack of quantitative endpoints (biomarkers) to measure disease progression and response to therapy. Additional factors delaying the development of new drugs include a lack of mechanistic understanding of standard treatments and the complexity, and often long time course, of disease, which makes disease modeling in laboratory animals challenging. This Annals volume presents a collection of papers stemming from the conference \"Translational Neuroscience in Psychiatry: Light at the End of the Tunnel,\" presented April 8, 2014 by the Biochemical Pharmacology Discussion Group of the New York Academy of Sciences, which explored recent developments that are providing new hope for a better understanding of disease progression and tractable mechanisms for drug discovery. The papers cover a range of topics, including progress in validating the use of event-related potentials and other electrophysiological means to measure sensory deficits that are increasingly recognized as features of disease pathology; improved methods for brain imaging in patients to monitor illness progression and treatment effect; development of panels of blood biomarkers that reflect ongoing brain disease pathology; and strategies for back-translating findings in humans to animal models.