Faculty Advisor

Adams, David S.


The overall goal of this project was to document and evaluate the technology of deep brain stimulation (DBS), including its non-invasive transcranial stimulation alternatives, to assess the technical, ethical, and legal problems to help determine whether they should move forward in the U.S. We performed a review of the current research literature and conducted interviews with academic researchers and bioethicists. Based on the research performed for this project, we conclude that DBS can be effective, but it comes with serious side-effects that must be carefully weighed against patient benefit. The FDA regulates DBS procedures, but not transcranial procedures, and we make recommendations for resolving conflicts of interest.


Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Date Accepted

August 2016

Project Type

Interactive Qualifying Project



Advisor Department

Biology and Biotechnology