April 2, 2021

Prechter Program Spring 2021 Studies

A comprehensive listing of all the studies being worked on Spring 2021

  • Longitudinal Study of Bipolar DisorderMelvin McInnis: The Longitudinal study is an observational study that has been ongoing for 15 years. Individuals with bipolar disorder and individuals with no history of mental health disorders are enrolled in the study and followed over their lifetime. These participants are often invited to participate in other studies and analysis of this rich database is ongoing.
  • Identifying Subtypes of Bipolar Disorder Using Longitudinal Mood trajectoriesIvy Tso: This project aims to identify and validate subtypes of bipolar disorder based on patterns of mood symptoms and changes over time.
    • The results are expected to inform treatment matching and identification of genetic and biological markers.
  • Bipolar Longitudinal Outcomes Measures Study (BLOOM)Melvin McInnis: This study is a remote-only study of individuals with bipolar disorder and those without. Subjects are administered online questionnaires on a monthly basis with the aim of assessing mood fluctuations and functioning over time to better understand the course of bipolar disorder and symptom variability.
  • Electrophysiological Signature of Affective Response Inhibition in Bipolar Disorder: Development of a BiomarkerTso: The project aims to characterize the electrophysiological profile of affective response inhibition deficits in bipolar disorder and develop an EEG-based classifier of bipolar disorder.
  • Sleep Across Seasons Study (SASS)Helen Burgess: Using participants from the Longitudinal Study, this research is observational and examines the impact of lunar cycles on sleep, melatonin production cortisol oxidative stress and mood across the four seasons.
  • Mood Lifters for Bipolar DisordersLisa O’Donnell: Mood Lifters was developed by Patty Deldin and is a program which follows the Weight Watchers model of weekly check-ins and peer-led motivational/informational lectures. Lisa O’Donnell has adapted Mood Lifters for participants with Bipolar Disorder and will conduct trial groups with the bipolar curriculum.
  • Longitudinal Voice Patterns in Bipolar Disorder (PRIORI)Emily Mower Provost and Melvin McInnis: This study uses elements of speech captured on a smart phone to build computer algorithms which will predict shifts in mood. Beginning in March 2021, research techs will begin the second phase of annotating speech segments for valence and activation to inform the computer algorithms.
  • Longitudinal Study of Bipolar DisorderMelvin McInnis: The Longitudinal study is an observational study that has been ongoing for 15 years. Individuals with bipolar disorder and individuals with no history of mental health disorders are enrolled in the study and followed over their lifetime. These participants are often invited to participate in other studies and analysis of this rich database is ongoing.
  • Identifying Subtypes of Bipolar Disorder Using Longitudinal Mood trajectoriesIvy Tso: This project aims to identify and validate subtypes of bipolar disorder based on patterns of mood symptoms and changes over time. The results are expected to inform treatment matching and identification of genetic and biological markers.
  • Bipolar Longitudinal Outcomes Measures Study (BLOOM)Melvin McInnis: This study is a remote-only study of individuals with bipolar disorder and those without. Subjects are administered online questionnaires on a monthly basis with the aim of assessing mood fluctuations and functioning over time to better understand the course of bipolar disorder and symptom variability.
  • Electrophysiological Signature of Affective Response Inhibition in Bipolar Disorder: Development of a Biomarker Ivy Tso: The project aims to characterize the electrophysiological profile of affective response inhibition deficits in bipolar disorder and develop an EEG-based classifier of bipolar disorder.
  • Sleep Across Seasons Study (SASS)Helen Burgess: Using participants from the Longitudinal Study, this research is observational and examines the impact of lunar cycles on sleep, melatonin production cortisol oxidative stress and mood across the four seasons.
  • Mood Lifters for Bipolar DisordersLisa O’Donnell: Mood Lifters was developed by Patty Deldin and is a program which follows the Weight Watchers model of weekly check-ins and peer-led motivational/informational lectures.
    • Lisa O’Donnell has adapted Mood Lifters for participants with Bipolar Disorder and will conduct trial groups with the bipolar curriculum.
  • Longitudinal Voice Patterns in Bipolar Disorder (PRIORI)Emily Mower Provost and Melvin McInnis: This study uses elements of speech captured on a smart phone to build computer algorithms which will predict shifts in mood. Beginning in March 2021, research techs will begin the second phase of annotating speech segments for valence and activation to inform the computer algorithms.
  • Predicting Suicide: A longitudinal analysis of speech patterns in a high risk sampleEmily Mower Provost: Brown University is collaborating with the PRIORI team to study whether the PRIORI app can be used to predict suicide in a high-risk sample of individuals.
  • Mining Social Media Data: Automated timeline extractionBarbara Korycki and Emily Mower Provost: We are building new tools to automatically extract timelines from Reddit data that will detail prescription start and stop times. Our goal is to learn how people talk about both their bipolar symptoms and medication side effects in social media data.
  • Integrated Apps for Medicaid Consumers (PRIORI and LIFE GOALS)Kelly Ryan: This project includes the development and dissemination to Medicaid consumers of two mobile apps. designed for persons with bipolar disorder. A sub-study recruits from the Prechter Longitudinal cohort, utilizing the self-help app. LIFE GOALS to determine utilization, efficacy and satisfaction with the app.
  • Modeling Mood Course to detect markers for effective adaptive interventionsAmy Cochran: This study follows participants with bipolar disorder over a six-week period utilizing a Fitbit and a smartphone app to evaluate mood and activity level. The aim is to determine which features of mood predict encounters with the medical system, to engage participants in long-term monitoring of their mood, stress, sleep, circadian rhythms and medical adherence and to test the feasibility of mobile and wearable platforms. 7
  • Dynamics of Data Driven States in Bipolar DisorderMichael Yee: This study uses machine learning to better understand mood and mood changes in bipolar disorder.
  • Biological rhythms in Bipolar DisorderMichael Yee, Amy Cochran, and Daniel Forger: This research investigates the link between biological rhythms and bipolar disorder, through innovative use of data gathered from consumer wearable devices.
  • Offspring of Parents with Bipolar DisorderMelvin McInnis: This Janssen-funded multi-site study follows adolescents from ages 15-25 years of age who have a parent with bipolar disorder for 2 years to evaluate the relationship of impairment in psychosocial functioning with the manifestation of mood symptoms.
  • Multi-modal assessment of GABA function in psychosis (GABAmech)Steve Taylor: This study, headed by Steve Taylor, looks at individuals with schizophrenia and individuals with bipolar disorder who experience psychosis to discern the linkages between GABA and negative affect that are common in psychosis.
  • Neuromodulation plus Cognitive Training to Improve Working Memory Among Individuals with Serious Mental IllnessCynthia Burton: This research studies whether brain stimulation can act as a cognitive enhancer to boost the effectiveness of cognitive training on individuals with serious mental illness who experience deficits in working memory.
  • Phenotypes of executive functioning and their longitudinal trajectories in bipolar disorderTobin Ehrlich: In bipolar disorder, one area of cognitive dysfunction is executive functioning. Executive functioning deficits are rather heterogeneous, and little is known if the longitudinal course of executive functioning differs with levels of impairment. Therefore, the current project evaluates both heterogeneity in executive functioning and if those differences relate to different longitudinal courses.
  • Low Rate of Performance Validity Failures during cognitive testing among Individuals with Bipolar DisorderDavid Marshall: This study assessed protocol validity for performance-based measures. Nearly 90% of individuals with bipolar disorder obtained perfect scores on both performance validity measures at the different time points being assessed.
  • History of Migraines and Lithium Response in Bipolar Disorder IDavid Marshall: BD and comorbid migraine may be more responsive to lithium. The current study is investigating clinical outcome measures in those with and without migraine according to lithium treatment status.
  • Impact of Cannabis and Alcohol Use Disorders on Clinical and Cognitive Outcomes in Bipolar DisorderDavid Marshall: Substance use disorders (SUDs) commonly occur in Bipolar Disorder. The current study is investigating the clinical and neurocognitive features of those with a history of Cannabis and Alcohol Use Disorders.
  • Personality traits and dimensions in bipolar disorderKelly Ryan: This research focuses on understanding the stability of personality traits, using the NEO-PI-R personality assessment, within bipolar over time. Further, we are examining how we can use personality traits, or combinations of traits, to predict future clinical course and functioning.
  • Clinical and personality characteristics of neuropsychological clusters in bipolar disorderKaley Angers and Kelly Ryan: This project identifies patterns of neuropsychological performance in bipolar disorder through cluster analysis, and is examining the clinical and personality characteristics of the identified clusters.
  • Employment stability in bipolar disorderKelly Ryan and Lisa O’Donnell: This project is examining the clinical and psychosocial predictors of employment status and stability over time in bipolar disorder. Our goal is to inform treatment strategies for maintaining and improving employment.
  • Neuropsychological trajectories over ten years in bipolar disorderKelly Ryan: This project aims to identify the longitudinal trajectories of neuropsychological performances with the goal to identify who may at be risk for decline and may benefit from treatments that target cognitive enhancement.
  • Sleep Quality and Neuropsychological Functioning in Bipolar DisorderMargo Menkes: This study examines the role of sleep disturbance in neuropsychological impairments in bipolar I disorder. This work has implications for treatment of sleep disturbance in bipolar disorder, and for identifying individuals with bipolar disorder who may be more vulnerable to neuropsychological impairments.
  • Cellular and Molecular Neurobiology of Mental Health – Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell (iPSC) modelingSue O’Shea: The goal of this research is to identify the cellular, molecular and transcriptomic differences in neurons and glial cells derived from individuals with bipolar disorder. Since it’s not really possible to use post-mortem brains for this purpose, our research has relied on stem cells derived from skin samples, which we then coax to form various brain cell types.
    • The Prechter data team is working on harmonizing iPSC data across three sites and adding the data to the National Data Archive at NIH
  • The Function of Supporting Cells in the Nervous System in Bipolar DisorderCindy DeLong, Guihau Jiang and Sue O’Shea: This research focuses on comparing the behavior of the supporting cells of the nervous system, astrocytes, in bipolar disorder. The team is ready to send RNA samples to Janssen for gene expression analysis, nearly completing a five-year study.
  • The Balance between Excitatory Signaling and Inhibitory signaling in the Brain in Bipolar DisorderDaniel Schill and Sue O’Shea: This balance is suggested to be altered in bipolar disorder. To study this (im)balance, Dan Schill, a post-doc, is forming inhibitory GABAergic neurons from our iPSC lines. He is using a subset of the patient lines which carry a genetic abnormality strongly associated with bipolar disorder.
  • Differentiating Excitatory (glutamatergic) Forebrain Neurons from Individuals with Bipolar and ControlsKate Campbell: This research is aimed at identifying differences in neurons derived for individuals with bipolar disorder and has identified differences in calcium signaling in the bipolar cells. As a physiologist, Kate is interested in other excitable tissues, such as the heart, which also may be affected in bipolar disorder.
  • Brain Organoids: Study of the Bipolar BrainDurga Attili and Sue O’Shea: To better model the complex, 3-dimensional development of the brain, Durga Attili has grown cells in suspension culture. After several months, they spontaneously differentiate into mini brains which maintain cortical patterning. He is analyzing the results of his nearly one-year experiment now.
  • Astrocytes in the Bipolar BrainSue O’Shea: A project with tremendous translational potential is the examination of products secreted by bipolar patient astrocytes. These tiny, lipid bound particles contain both toxic material (to be removed from cells), and supportive factors that nurture neurons and give them instructions. Addition of vesicles obtained from control cells rescue bipolar neurons, while conversely, addition of vesicles from bipolar cells damage control neurons. These data suggest that there are toxic substances in bipolar vesicles and positive factors in those from control cells. We are attempting to identify both components
  • Developing a Neural Network Model of Altered Reward Processing in Bipolar DisorderIvy Tso: The major goal of this project is to use fMRI and dynamic causal modeling to understand the brain network dynamics contributing to altered reward processing and core phenotypes of bipolar disorder, informing the development of targeted interventions.
  • Neural Oscillatory Basis of Altered Gaze Processing in Bipolar DisorderIvy Tso: This study uses time-frequency and connectivity analysis of EEG signals to investigate theta-band neural oscillations and inter-areal synchronization via theta-gamma coupling as neurobiological mechanisms underlying social information processing in bipolar disorder.
  • A Bayesian Computational Model of Risk-Taking in Bipolar DisorderIvy Tso: This research models behavior during a laboratory gambling task using a Bayesian computational model to disentangle the psychological processes giving rise to risk-taking and vulnerability to substance use disorder in bipolar disorder.
  • Neural Mechanisms of Eye Gaze Perception in Bipolar DisorderIvy Tso: This study uses fMRI to investigate the role of the mentalizing brain system (medial prefrontal cortex and bilateral temporo-parietal junctions) in the processing of self-referential social cues in bipolar disorder and its relationship to cognitive and social functioning.
  • The Ank3 Variant in Bipolar DisorderPaul Jenkins: This study is investigating the effects of lithium on a mouse model of an Ank3 variant identified in human bipolar disorder patients. Findings that lithium partially reversed GABAergic signaling deficits, perhaps through activation of parvalbumin(PV)-positive interneurons and increased release of the inhibitory neurotransmitter, GABA is leading to studies to determine the mechanisms underlying parvalbumin neuron activation, studies to determine if valproate is working through a similar mechanism, and the work to assemble the human samples to begin our induced pluripotent stem cell-derived neurons from the family carrying this ANK3 variant.