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Episode 16: Studying Basal Ganglia Circuits and Developing Deep Brain Stimulation Protocols for Longer-Lasting Effects with Aryn Gittis

Improving our understanding of the complex neural circuits involved in normal function of the basal ganglia and other parts of the brain impacted by Parkinson's disease is critical for developing more targeted and more effective treatment approaches. In this episode, Dr. Aryn Gittis discusses her research examining how the activity of specific basal ganglia circuits relates to motor control in both health and pre-clinical models of movement disorders like Parkinson's disease. She describes new research on basal ganglia circuits that expands upon existing theoretical frameworks and provides important insights that can be leveraged to improve current therapies for Parkinson's disease by better targeting specific cell types in relevant circuits. Aryn also shares details about her ongoing project evaluating the impacts of stimulus location for a novel pattern of deep brain stimulation (DBS) that has been shown to provide long-lasting therapeutic effects in pre-clinical models. Aryn is Professor of Biological Sciences and the Neuroscience Institute at Carnegie Mellon University.

This podcast is geared toward researchers and clinicians. If you live with Parkinson’s or have a friend or family member with PD, listen to The Michael J. Fox Foundation Parkinson’s Podcast. Hear from scientists, doctors and people with Parkinson's on different aspects of life with the disease as well as research toward treatment breakthroughs at

Rather listen on-the-go?  Subscribe to The Parkinson’s Research Podcast: New Discoveries in Neuroscience on iTunes or through any podcast app on your smartphone or tablet. 

View the transcript of this podcast. 

You can learn more about the many resources The Michael J. Fox Foundation offers to researchers here.

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