A team of researchers is among the first to ask if baby teeth can be used to explore if there are certain ages when being exposed to childhood adversity is even more harmful.
Depression Clinical & Research Program
1 Bowdoin Square, 6th Floor
Boston, MA 02114
How to Make an Appointment
Call 617-726-8895 and select option 4 for an initial phone screen to determine whether this program is appropriate for you.
Because of high demand for our clinicians, treatment studies can provide an excellent option for prospective patients. If your case is appropriate, you will be matched to a provider based on your insurance and our provider availability.
For information on participating in a research study, call 877-552-5837.
Explore This Program
The ongoing work of the Depression Clinical and Research Program (DCRP) at Massachusetts General Hospital is helping to define depression treatments for the field. Over the years, our experienced researchers and clinicians, along with our promising young trainees and junior faculty members, have collaborated to generate countless clinical reports, perform pilot studies and conduct large controlled trials.
The clinical component of the Depression Clinical and Research Program (DCRP) delivers care outside of the research setting to people with depressive disorders. The program provides a number of different services, including:
- Patient evaluations and follow-up care
- One-time consultations for patients whose depression has failed to respond to multiple therapies
- Second opinions
The DCRP staff includes full-time psychiatrists, psychologists, research fellows, along with research coordinators, a program coordinator, a data analyst, a practice manager and a patient service coordinator.
Resilience Program at the DCRP
This program is designed to help young people—men and women (ages 14 to 30)—increase their resilience and develop better coping skills for managing stress.
Insurances We Accept
The program does not accept all insurances, and the individual physicians vary in what insurance they accept. If your insurance is not accepted by the program, you may elect to self-pay if your insurance allows it. Medicare, MassHealth products, Health Safety Net, Harvard Pilgrim, United Health Care and some Tufts Health plans that subcontract (carve out) their mental health benefits do not allow this option. The program does not accept the Magellan carve-out.
Research at the DCRP
The DCRP conducts leading-edge research in the area of depression, with a focus on testing novel antidepressant treatments and developing new tools to understand the biological changes that occur in this condition. Our program is a leader worldwide in the study of unipolar depressive disorders. The DCRP’s research has informed clinical practice and contributed to the development of new standards of care for depression. DCRP researchers have received significant funding from both the National Institute of Mental Health and industry sponsors.
Areas of Research
- Psychotherapy studies: psychodynamic psychotherapy, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), stress reduction therapy, culturally-focused counseling and telepsychiatry
- Medication trials: antidepressants, atypical antipsychotics, naltrexone, acamprosate and ketamine, among others
- Population studies: college students, ethnic minority patients, patients with Parkinson’s disease and patients with nicotine dependence
- Non-medication treatment studies: including cranial electrical stimulation (CES), acupuncture, placebo, photobiomodulation and a medication management system
- Natural treatment studies: including omega-3 fatty acids, St John’s wort, S-Adenosyl methionine (SAMe), maca root, vitamins and probiotics
- Non-treatment studies of various psychological and physical processes: stress and aging, visual memory and object recognition, responses to reward and punishment, speech patterns and fMRI
If any of these studies interest you, please call us at 877-552-5837 to learn more. All inquiries will be kept confidential.
- Neurobiological Underpinnings of Placebo Response in Major Depressive Disorder
- Adapted CBT for Depression in Patients with Moderate to Severe Traumatic Brain Injury
- Neuroimaging Studies of Reward Processing
- Augmentation versus Switch: Comparative Effectiveness Research Trial
- Xenon Inhalation Therapy for Major Depressive Disorder and Bipolar Disorder
- Mindfulness, Guided Imagery and Supportive Group Treatments to Improve Mood for Dementia Caregiver
The Depression Clinical and Research Program conducts ground-breaking studies in neuroscience, genetics, and the assessment of new and established treatments for mental health disorders. We are lead by a team of depression specialists.
- Director, Depression Clinical and Research Program
- Psychiatrist-In-Chief, Department of Psychiatry
- Director, Division of Clinical Research, Mass General Research Institute; Executive Director, Clinical Trials Network & Institute
- Associate Dean for Clinical & Translational Research, Slater Family Professor of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School
- Director, Dauten Family Center for Bipolar Treatment Innovation
- Associate Director, Depression Clinical and Research Program
- C0-Director, Center for Clinical Research Education
To learn more about the nature and treatment of depression, we suggest the following websites:
- Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance
Offers information on mood disorders, local and national support groups, programs and publications, and relevant news and research updates.
- National Foundation for Depressive Illness
Educational and advocacy site, providing information for patients and physicians referrals through a toll free telephone number.
- National Institute of Mental Health Depression
NIMH site with thorough information on depression causes, symptoms and treatments. This site also features case studies, NIMH booklets and information on current NIMH studies.
- National Alliance for Mentally Ill (NAMI)
Nonprofit, grassroots, self-help, support and advocacy organization of consumers, families and friends of people with severe mental illnesses.
Support Our Work
Depression can profoundly impact an individual's quality of life. Its impact on well-being is comparable to or greater than many chronic medical conditions. Depression is currently the leading cause of disability in developed countries and the fourth leading cause of disability worldwide. Projections estimate that depression will be the second leading cause of disability worldwide by 2020. The annual cost of depression in the U.S. alone is approximately $70-80 billion.
Depression has also been characterized by an increased risk of suicide, particularly in children and adolescents. In the last 50 years, the suicide rate has tripled for 15-19-year-olds and doubled for 10-14-year-olds. Currently, suicide ranks as the third leading cause of death in adolescents.
Funding for the Depression Clinical and Research Program
Each year, thousands of individuals struggling with depression will turn to the Depression Clinical and Research Program (DCRP) at Massachusetts General Hospital for therapies that offer hope and alleviate suffering. The DCRP relies on philanthropy to advance its mission of providing the highest-quality patient care and conducting state-of the-art scientific research to discover more effective and innovative depression therapies. Thanks to the generosity of individuals, foundations and private and public supporters, the DCRP remains passionately committed to generating new treatments and standards of care – not only for our patients, but also for the millions of people worldwide who suffer from this disorder. Philanthropy enables the DCRP to:
- Convert new discoveries about the biological basis of depression into clinical approaches
- Develop more effective medical and alternative therapies to treat depression
- Improve our ability to care for patients from high-risk or underserved populations
The DCRP is poised to make a profound impact on depression treatment, while also fostering a vital training ground for the next generation of leaders in the field.
- Patient Education
- Jul | 9 | 2019
Depression is a mood disorder that causes feelings of sadness, numbness or loneliness for long periods of time. On this webpage, you will learn the difference between depression and diabetes burnout.
- Patient Education
- Jul | 9 | 2019
Depression is a mood disorder that causes feelings of sadness, numbness or loneliness for long periods of time. Below, you will learn about depression and what causes it.
- Patient Education
- Jul | 9 | 2019
Depression is a mood disorder that causes feelings of sadness, numbness or loneliness for long periods of time. On this webpage, you will learn how you can support your child.
- Apr | 4 | 2019
Although treatment by a mental health professional cannot be replaced with home remedies, there are a few tricks that you can perform at home that will empower you and help you cope with sadness and depression.
- Oct | 4 | 2018
With big data and machine learning, you have the ability to potentially find patterns or predictive profiles that may incorporate indicators of risk you would never have thought of, says Dr. Smoller.
Pioneering Psychiatry Research
The integration of patient care and clinical research has been a hallmark of the Department of Psychiatry for more than 30 years. Today, the department has the largest clinical research program in the hospital, with studies at the forefront of neuroscience, molecular biology and genetics.