This recent article discusses a study in mice published in the Journal of Neuroscience. It may improve our understanding of how transcranial magnetic stimulation works.
One of the findings discussed in this study of the brains of mice is a higher level of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF).
BDNF has been called miracle grow for the brain!
We’ve long known that BDNF is an important peptide in building new brain synapses which is key to brain healing processes. In this study, a ten minute session of transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) pulses every day for two weeks temporarily and non-invasively stimulated the mice’s neurons to increase BDNF.
This study was done with mice, but TMS is an effective treatment for a variety of psychiatric and neurological disorders in humans, including severe depression. Lower BDNF levels have also been linked to depression in people’s brains.
The results of this study indicate that the procedure may beneficially change the brain’s workings at multiple levels which is in line with what we think may be occurring in our treatments with Advanced TMS.
There are a great many hints that BDNF may be a key component as the brain structurally repairs itself. For example, we know that exercise, which can be an effective treatment for the brain disease called depression, increases BDNF.
This study concludes “that TMS can create an environment that makes it easier for the brain to structurally repair itself,” which is great news, and which adds to our understanding of exactly how repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation does its work.
In a sense, BDNF is a long acting happy chemical.
We intend to share information about matters such as this, and hope the information reaches millions of people suffering from depression. Augusta is where we live, and work, and treat depression with TMS, but we want to help stamp out depression worldwide. You can help, too, by sharing accurate information about this brain disease.