Rethinking mental disorders: the role of learning and brain plasticity.
Recent research in neurodevelopment, neuroplasticity and genetics is providing new insights into the etiogenesis of psychopathology, but progress in treatment development has been hampered by reliance on diagnostic categories that are characterized by heterogeneity and based primarily on phenomenology. The NIMH Research Domain Criteria (RDoC) initiative seeks to provide a neuroscience-based nosological framework for future research on psychopathology, categorizing individuals for research purposes using a dimensional approach that capitalizes on advances in modern neuroscience. These scientific advances and new approaches to classification can inform the development of novel, circuit-based interventions and the personalization of treatment. In this paper, we review key advances areas in clinical neuroscience, describe the RDoC project and highlight some emerging treatment approaches that are consistent with these developments.