Ranked 9th in the nation among departments of psychiatry in total research funding from the National Institutes of Health, MUSC Psychiatry is the single largest research department in the College of Medicine. Nationally recognized translational research is carried out in the Department’s Addiction Sciences Division, which includes a major Alcohol Research Center and involves extensive collaboration with basic science and other clinical departments. The MUSC addictions program was ranked 8th in the nation by US News & World Report.

Studies & Clinical Trials

Psychiatry researchers carry out clinical trials, including participation in national clinical trials networks, lead a center on women’s health, a family services research center, a national crime victims center, and a new brain imaging center of excellence. Studies are underway, utilizing transcranial magnetic stimulation, and a mood disorders clinic has been expanded to include a vagus nerve stimulation treatment and research program for patients with refractory depression.

Researchers in geriatric psychiatry are focusing on Alzheimer’s disease, and extensive research is being carried out on posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), particularly in the mental health division of the Veterans Administration hospital, located just two blocks from the Institute.

Researchers in our Bipolar Disorder Research Center are using multimodal neuroimaging techniques (e.g., Proton Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy [1H-MRS], functional MR Imaging [fMRI]) to help us better understand the neurobiology of Bipolar Disorder, along with co-occurring substance use/abuse and other related conditions, and to investigate the potential therapeutic promise and neurobiological mechanisms of treatments for patients with Bipolar Disorder.

South Carolina Clinical & Translational Research (SCTR) Institute

Research is a major activity at MUSC, generating over 200 million dollars of extramural support per year. The best resource for learning about research and help with the research process is the South Carolina Clinical and Translational Research (SCTR) Institute. The SCTR web site describes several campus programs to assist investigators with their research, whether they are a first time researcher or a seasoned investigator. This includes support for navigating through the regulatory process, finding collaborators, budget preparation, statistical consultation, patient recruitment, the conduct of a clinical trial, and closeout procedures. The SUCCESS Center of the SCTR has created a Research Toolkit, providing background and critical information to MUSC personnel through each step in the research process. The Success Center can be reached at 843-792-8300.