Aileen Bailey, professor of psychology at St. Mary’s College of Maryland, has been awarded a $213,056 research grant by the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
The project, “Stress, depression, and effects of novel antidepressants on excitatory synapses,” is in collaboration with Scott Thompson, of the University of Maryland, Baltimore, who will serve as principal investigator.
The NIH funding, which will be distributed over a five-year period, will allow Bailey to examine the behavioral effects of a novel antidepressant drug. She will study the behavioral side effects of the antidepressant including changes in sleep and awake activity patterns, and will also examine if the drug can restore normal behavioral responses across several different models of depression. Bailey will involve undergraduate students at St. Mary’s College in her research.
Findings of this research can play an important role in the treatment of depression. “Typical antidepressant drugs work in only one-half of patients and can take two to three weeks to produce relief from depression,” says Bailey. “Fast-acting drugs like the one we’re testing might improve negative mood states within twenty-four hours.”