Student points to potential in new treatment

A student's research project has explored the field of bioelectromagnetic brain stimulation (BMS).

IGS Year 9 student Harriette Romer has completed an Area of Interest Project and presented it in both French and English to senior and Science staff.

Her project explored the work of Dr Alim Louis Benabid, Md, PhD and his contributions to the development of Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS).

“DBS is a surgical procedure that delivers high-frequency electrical stimulation to necessary sites of the brain,” Harriette said.

“Electrodes are placed on the brain and a wire connects the electrodes to a neurostimulator generator, surgically inserted under the skin near the clavicle.

“DBS is approved by the food and drug administration (FDA) to treat essential tremor and Parkinson’s disease (PD) since 1997, approved to treat dystonia in 2006, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) in 2009 and most recently approved to treat epilepsy in 2018.

“DBS is currently undergoing clinical trials as a potential treatment for addiction, chronic pain, cluster headaches, dementia, major depression, Huntington’s disease, multiple sclerosis, stroke patients, Tourette syndrome and patients suffering a traumatic brain injury.

“Although little information is revealed to the public, there is a great potential for DBS to be widely available and approved treatment for many illnesses.

“I personally chose to focus my research around bioelectromagnetic studies, as I find the field to be insightful and innovative.”