DARPA agency allocated funds to two teams of specialists for preliminary tests of brain implants, which are able to detect patterns that affect bad mood. These devices generate impulses that seem to “shock” the brain, bringing it to a normal state.
Thanks to this development, physicians hope to create a new method of treatment for previously incurable mental disorders. In particular, brain implants that stimulate the brain are already used in the treatment of Parkinson’s disease.
However, the information that the constant stimulation of certain areas of the brain helps with chronic depression has not yet been confirmed. The study showed that the condition of 90% of patients who received brain stimulation during the year did not improve. The idea of a new technique is to act on the brain not constantly, but periodically.
The ultimate goal of the study is treatment of depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. Despite this, a group of scientists from the University of Southern California is trying a new technique for patients with epilepsy, and their colleagues from the Massachusetts General Hospital are working on creating algorithms that will focus on the performance of a specific task.
Obviously, scientists will not be able to avoid a whole set of ethical problems. For example, by stimulating brain areas that affect mood, you can inadvertently create an effect of “artificial” happiness that will drown out all other equally important feelings.