Brain Stimulation With Lightbulb (01

Brain Stimulation Subspecialty Summit (BraSSS)

Organized By:

Brigham & Women’s Hospital


Bornstein Amphitheater

Start Time:

September 14, 2023 12:00 pm EST

End Time:

September 14, 2023 6:00 pm EST

Join discussion leaders Shan Siddiqi, MD (BWH) and Nolan Williams, MD (Stanford) as they engage leading experts from around the world on important topics facing the rapidly emerging field of brain stimulation. Through a series of presentations and discussions, this summit will establish a network of key opinion leaders to yield consensus on specific debates and build an intellectual framework to allow this transformative subspecialty to launch and grow.

Host Institution 
Brigham & Women’s Hospital, Boston, MA

Louis Bornstein Family Amphitheater
Brigham and Women’s Hospital
45 Francis Street
Boston, MA

Discussion Leaders 
Shan Siddiqi, MD
, Brigham & Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School
Nolan Williams, MD, Stanford University School of Medicine

We aim for this summit to:

  1. Establish an intellectual framework along which this subspecialty can launch and grow.
  2. Create a network of experts that can guide the subspecialty forward as it evolves.
  3. Yield a consensus statement on specific debates in this field (see below)


STATE OF SCIENCE at Bornstein Amphitheater. 10-minute lectures from attendees. Open to all.

12:00 – 1:00

Stimulating Brain Circuits from Different Vantage Points

Recent data suggest that TMS, DBS, and lesions can treat the same symptom by modulating different parts of the same brain circuit. However, different tools are used by different specialists with minimal cross-talk. There may be ways for these tools to complement each other; for instance, TMS may be used to noninvasively probe a circuit to identify the right DBS/FUS targets and the right candidate patients before surgery. 

In this session, speakers will present ideas for using these techniques to complement one another. 

John Rolston
Brigham & Women’s Hospital

Darin Dougherty
Massachusetts General Hospital

Nick Trapp 
University of Iowa

Binith Cheeran
Abbott Laboratories

Martijn Figee
Mount Sinai School of Medicine

Shan Siddiqi
Brigham & Women’s Hospital

1:00 – 2:00

Complementary, Competing, and Converging Tools

There are different approaches to identifying treatment targets and parameters beyond those that are currently in use. Some of these approaches are complementary and others are competing, but in many cases these different approaches may converge on a common answer.
In this session, participants will present their latest unpublished data on new treatment targets. We anticipate learning that different teams are converging on common answers. These convergent solutions will reveal the path forward for treatment development. 

Nolan Williams
Stanford University

Michael Sugrue – neurosurgeon
Omniscient Neurotech, Cingulum Health, and Barrow Neurological Institute

Mark Eldaief – neurologist/cognitive
Massachusetts General Hospital

Desmond Oathes – clinical psychologist
University of Pennsylvania

Damiaan Denys – psychiatrist/interventional
University of Amsterdam

Noreen Bukhari – neurologist/movement
Duke University

2:00 – 2:30


2:30 – 3:30

Exploring the Parameter Space and Monitoring Outcomes

There are very few brain stimulation protocols that are currently in clinical practice, and they are often oversimplified as “excitatory” versus “inhibitory.” Several components can be further optimized, such as treatment parameters (e.g. frequency, intensity), state dependence, and synergistic pharmacotherapy. There are emerging data for how each of these components may be optimized and their outcomes may be monitored.
In this session, participants will share their latest data on optimizing the parameter space, again aiming to identify convergence. 

Alik Widge -psychiatrist/interventional
University of Minnesota

Joshua Brown – psychiatrist/neurologist
McLean Hospital

Andrew Leuchter – psychiatrist/TMS
University of California – Los Angeles

Moushin Shafi – neurologist/epilepsy
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center

Conor Liston – psychiatrist/basic science
Weill-Cornell Medical College

Alex McGirr – psychiatrist/TMS
University of Calgary

3:30 – 4:30

Clinical Standards and Off-label Treatment

Many clinicians are using unorthodox brain stimulation protocols. Some of these protocols are designed to maximize revenue rather than maximizing risk-benefit to the patient. On the other hand, off-label protocols may be appropriate when there is early-stage evidence that the benefits outweigh the risks and the patient has not responded to conventional treatment. There are no clear guidelines for what constitutes an acceptable amount of evidence for applying off-label treatment. 
In this session, participants will discuss different thresholds for what constitutes “acceptable” evidence for clinical implementation. 

Brian Kopell – neurosurgeon
Mount Sinai School of Medicine

Leo Chen – psychiatrist/TMS
Monash University

Mohammed Ahmed – neuropsychiatrist
Kaizen Brain Center

David Carreon – psychiatrist/TMS
Acacia Mental Health

Rebecca Allen – neuropsychiatrist
Seattle Neuropsychiatric Treatment Center

Jonathan Downar – psychiatrist/TMS
University of Toronto

4:30 – 5:00


5:00 – 6:00

Other Topics

Additional topics that do not fall into the above categories, but have a high probability of translating to brain stimulation clinical practice in the near future.

Volker Coenen – neurosurgeon
Freiberg University

Scott Aaronson – psychiatrist/interventional
Sheppard-Pratt Hospital/University of Maryland

Catherine Chu – neurologist/child
Massachusetts General Hospital

Colleen Hanlon – clinical neuroscientist

Noah Philip – psychiatrist/interventional
Brown University/Providence VA

Nicole Peterson – clinical neuroscientist
University of California – Los Angeles


Louis Bornstein Family Amphitheater
Enter 15 Francis Street (Peter Bent Brigham Building)
Take a left and walk down the Pike (2nd floor)
Bornstein is between Elevator H and G on the Pike, right side.

From 75 Francis St – Main Lobby
Take the escalator up to the second floor and turn right.
Walk past the gift shop and through the Tower elevator bank to enter the Pike
Bornstein is after Elevator H, on the left.

From 45 Francis Street
Enter through the 45 Francis street entrance, head straight towards The Pike, take a left and Bornstein Family Amphitheater will be on your right between Elevator H and G.