Bipolar Research

Current Studies

Below are short summary of our active studies for which we are recruiting participants. We are working on research in all areas of bipolar disorder and major depressive disorder.

If you have ever experienced any of the following we may have a study for you!

Mania Symptoms include: Depression Symptoms include:
  • Racing thoughts
  • Too much energy
  • Decrease need for sleep
  • Elevated mood with unusual happiness
  • Talking fast
  • Reckless behavior
  • Excessive spending
  • Feeling down and sad
  • Fatigue or loss of energy
  • Loss of interest in activities and friends
  • Thoughts of death or suicide
  • Feelings of worthlessness or guilt
  • Problems with sleep
  • Decreased ability to concentrate

Sleep-dependent procedural learning in bipolar disorder study:

The goal of this study is to evaluate whether individuals with bipolar have trouble consolidating procedural memories, or the memory needed to perform physical skills, compared to controls. We hope to better understand these memory difficulties in individuals with bipolar, as these decreased thinking abilities can be disabling.

  • Eligible participants will be under the age of 45 with a diagnosis of bipolar I disorder
  • Total participation will be conducted over 2 days
    • 40 minutes on Day 1
    • 15 minutes on Day 2
  • Participants will perform a computerized finger tapping task on these two consecutive days
  • Compensation: up to $20 for Day 1 and up to $35 for Day 2

Randomized Trial for Internet Based Intervention for Bipolar Disorder:

MoodSwings is an online self-help program for adults with bipolar disorder. It is designed for participants to work at their own pace and in their own time.

  • Duration for the study: 12 months
  • Between 21 and 65 years of age
  • Participants are randomly assigned to one of the three groups. Different levels of access help us assess the effectiveness of our program. 3 treatment groups are:
    • Group 1: Access to discussion Board
    • Group 2: Access to modules and discussion board
    • Group 3: Access to tools, modules and discussion board
  • Compensation: $ 40 for each phone assessment

The VA Augmentation and Switching Treatments for Improving Depression Outcomes Study:

VAST-D examines next-step treatment for veterans struggling with major depression who are not responding well to first step treatments. The primary objective compares the treatment effectiveness of augmenting an antidepressant with aripiprazole (Abilify®) or with bupropion-SR (Wellbutrin-SF®) vs. switching treatment to bupropion-SR monotherapy on depression symptom reduction over 12 weeks. The secondary objectives compare the acute (up to 12 weeks) and long term (up to 36 weeks) efficacy, safety, effects on functioning, suicidality, quality of life, anxiety and other associated symptoms, costs and cost-effectiveness of each of the three next-step treatments.

  • Duration for the study: 36 weeks
  • Must be 18 or older
  • Bi-weekly visits
  • Compensation: $375 if all study visits are completed

*Note: Please keep in mind that the study is voluntary so you are free to withdraw at any time.*

If from reading the information, you are still interested, please call our screening line at 650-849-0161. The next step would be to complete a screening over the phone to see if you meet our eligibility criteria. If it appears that you meet our eligibility criteria, the next step would be to speak with one of our clinicians for an evaluation of your mood and assessment of whether you are a good candidate for the study. Our offices are open Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. We look forward to hearing from you!

Our staff would be happy to schedule an initial screening and evaluation appointment for potential study participation.

Call us at (650) 849-0161 or click here and our staff will contact you within 2-3 business days.

We return most calls within 24 hours except on Fridays/weekends.

Note: Due to the VA's confidentiality policy on Protected Health Information (PHI), we cannot respond to direct e-mail inquiries.

For general information about participant rights, contact 1-866-680-2906.

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