Neuroscience: Belgian researchers discover groundbreaking therapy


A team centred around a researcher from UCLouvain have discovered a potentially revolutionary way of treating problems like addiction and depression.

The pioneering research team of which Pierre Vassiliadis (UCLouvain and EPFL) was the key figure discovered a way to stimulate the striatum – located deep inside our grey matter – without surgery or implants, in other words in a non-invasive way. A world first! 

The technique they used employs the fancy term transcranial temporal interference stimulation (or tTIS for short) and could have an impact on many unpleasant conditions such as depression, addiction, and pretty much any condition in which the brain’s reward system plays a key role. 

With tTIS, two pairs of electrodes are strategically placed on the patient’s head and send weak electrical fields through the brain at two different frequencies. The difference between those frequencies is what stimulates the targeted part of the brain. 

What’s next for these researchers that are potentially writing history with this method? They will put it to the test with clinical trials. 

Well done to these innovative researchers, showing that Belgium continues to be on the forefront of scientific discoveries!