Journal Article and Summary

Article: The Emerging Neurobiology of Bipolar Disorder

Citation: Harrison, Paul J., et al. “The Emerging Neurobiology of Bipolar Disorder.” Trends in Neurosciences, vol. 41, no. 1, Jan. 2018, pp. 18–30.,

  • Our understanding of bipolar disorder remains frustratingly limited. It continues to be a descriptive syndrome since there is a lack of sufficient knowledge to allow its characterization or conceptualization to be based on etiology or mechanism.
  • The discovery of some of the bipolar disorder risk genes has the potential to revolutionize the understanding of its pathogenesis and neurobiology.
  • The use of digital technologies and remote sensors, coupled with advanced analyses of the resulting data, is allowing a more-quantitative, longitudinal approach to the bipolar disorder’s phenotype and its corresponding treatment.
  • The ultimate objective of these modern methods is to enable a more scientifically informed, evidence-based approach to the classification, measurement, and treatment of bipolar disorder. The distinctions between bipolar disorder and other conditions characterized by lability of mood, emotion, and behavior could be redrawn or eliminated. The behavioral and physiological correlation of mood and mood instability could be incorporated into clinical practice, while the emphasis on finding interventions that can stabilize mood independently of the underlying diagnosis, and new, genetically informed therapies, like those that target voltage-gated calcium channels, could be implemented.