The business of the brain

Oregon Business Magazine explores the world of Deep Brain Stimulation with Dr. Kim Burchiel

July 16, 2015

For decades, Kim Burchiel, M.D., FAANS, FACS, professor of the Department of Neurological Surgery OHSU School of Medicine, has explored applications for Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS). Now, with new national momentum in the field, Dr. Burchiel and his startup, CereMod, hope to push forward with a revolutionary new treatment for chronic obsesity:

Chronic obesity isn't a neurological disorder like Parkinson's or Alzheimer's, which have responded well to DBS treatment since its earliest days. Nevertheless, Burchiel posits that the most severe and intractable cases of obesity, those that fail all other treatments, are due to faulty hardwiring in the brain. Researchers around the world are hard at work mapping the areas of the brain that control autonomic and voluntary bodily functions, and decoding the not-quite-infinite number of electric signals that our brain and nervous system traffic in.

"If DBS is going to take a leap from the '60s to the 21st century," Burchiel says, "we've got to understand the traffic better."

Burchiel thinks he's found a way to do this for the unique maladaptation that leads to chronic morbid obesity. In other words, he thinks he's found the exact spot where the brain regulates metabolism, a notoriously tricky area to find and treat.

Read the full article at Oregon Business Magazine


More about Dr. Burchiel

Dr. Kim Burchiel, 2015 AANS Distinguished Service Award recipient

OHSU neurosurgeon captures field's top honor (Oregon Business Journal)