Research Studies Seeking Participants

Studies listed below are attempting to recruit participants and have submitted copies of their Institutional Review Board approval to this web site. If you are interested in participating in a study listed below, please follow the link to the investigator’s web site. The studies listed below have no affiliation with this web site’s owner or author, and are merely presented here as a courtesy to help participants and researchers find each other.

NY:New Research Program for Children and Adolescents with Tourette’s Disorder

Tourette’s Syndrome is a neurological disorder involving motor tics (eye-blinking, mouth movements, head jerks, shoulder shrugs and arm/leg jerks) and/or vocal tics (fast meaningless sounds or noises, grunting, barks, shouting out single words or sentences, or repeating words) that start in childhood and persist over time.

Patients with mild symptoms of Tourette’s Syndrome are treated with behavioral techniques, but more troublesome cases require the use of drugs. Also, the diagnosis and treatment of Tourette’s Syndrome is complicated due to additional conditions including attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), anxiety, and depression. These problems often require patients with Tourette’s to receive other medicines as well.

While the exact cause of Tourette’s Syndrome is unknown, disturbances in the chemicals controlling the nerves in the brain (neurotransmitters) are thought to play a major role. . Your child is invited to take part in a new clinical research program sponsored by Psyadon Pharmaceuticals which is using PSYRX101, a synthetic drug, where the active ingredient is Ecopipam, that acts as to stop the actions of one of these neurotransmitters and to help relieve the symptoms of Tourette’s.

Dr. Cathy Budman’s practice, in collaboration with the Feinstein Institute for Medical Research, is seeking those with a diagnosis of Tourette’s Syndrome and are willing to participate in this novel approach at treating tics in children and adolescents.

You CAN participate if you:

  • Have Tourette’s Syndrome
  • Exhibit both motor and vocal tics
  • Are male or female, ages 7 through 17
  • Weigh over 20kg (45lbs)

You CANNOT participate if you:

  • Have a history of schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, or other psychotic disorders
  • Have a history of attempted suicide
  • Have had a major depressive episode in the past 2 years
  • Have a history of seizures
  • Have had a myocardial infarction within the past 6 months
  • Is a Female who is pregnant or lactating

If your child is currently taking some medicines for their Tourette’s, they may need to stop taking them before they can take part since these other drugs may complicate the test. Please speak with Dr. Budman about what this will mean for your child. If you or someone you know would be interested in participating in this clinical trial, please call: Bibu Jacob, research coordinator, at 516-562-1012 or e-mail at

Recruitment notice posted October 21, 2014

Research study at Yale recruiting teens with tics

Investigators at the Yale Child Study Center are conducting research on the potential effectiveness of brain activity biofeedback in reducing tics. The study has received institutional review board approval.

In collaboration with the Yale Child Study Center, this multi-departmental and NIH-funded study is led by Dr. Michelle Hampson in the Department of Diagnostic Radiology. The purpose of this study is to determine whether individuals can gain control over a region of their brain known as the supplementary motor area when provided with feedback about activity in that brain region, and to investigate if increased control over the brain area translates into an improvement in tic symptoms.

Participation in this study does require a substantial commitment of time. Over a period of approximately one month, participants will be asked to come to the Yale School of Medicine for eight visits, seven of which will involve a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) session. Participants will receive financial compensation for their time and those that live more than 30 miles away may be eligible for travel reimbursement. The payment for each fMRI session is $80; these typically take around an hour. We also pay $20 per hour for clinical assessments, etc, that are conducted over the course of the study. We estimate that those who complete the study will receive approximately $600 total for their participation (not including any travel reimbursements).

I hope you will share information about this study with anyone who may be interested and eligible. I have enclosed an additional sheet detailing inclusion and exclusion criteria for the study as well as a recruitment flyer that could be posted on a bulletin board, or shared privately with potential participants and family members. In addition to those who currently qualify we are also interested in individuals who are likely to meet criteria before the study concludes in 2017.

You can download the flyer on the study with their contact information here. I’ve listed the inclusion and exclusion criteria elsewhere.

Recruitment notice posted April 17, 2013

Medication Study on the Effectiveness of Extended-Release Guanfacine on Tics

Researchers at the Yale Child Study Center are conducting a pilot study to investigate the efficacy and dosing of a new extended-release form of guanfacine (trade name Intuniv®) for the treatment of tics in children with a Chronic Tic Disorder.

This study, funded by Shire Pharmaceuticals, is being conducted Yale and at two other research centers, New York University Child Study Center and University of Southern Florida. Guanfacine, which is primarily used to treat high blood pressure, has also been used to treat children with Tourette Syndrome (TS) and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Although this drug has been used in TS with some success, the direct effect of the medication on tic severity has not been formally studied. In 2009, a new extended-release form of guanfacine was approved by the FDA for treatment. This pilot study will examine the efficacy and dosage of this new extended-release formula in hopes of finding a new medication to treat tics with limited adverse effects.

Eligible children are between the ages of 6 and 17, weigh at least 15 kg (33 lbs), and have a DSM-IV diagnosis of Tourette Disorder or a Chronic Tic Disorder (Chronic Motor Tic or Chronic Vocal Tic). Once enrolled, children will be randomly assigned to either the active treatment or placebo. Regardless of assignment, children will be placed in an 8 week treatment program of an increasing dosage with follow-up visits at 2 week intervals. Medication will be carefully monitored throughout the entire program. If necessary, the medication dose will be lowered or ceased.

After the 8 week treatment period, children will be assessed for treatment response. Children who were assigned to the active treatment and had a decrease in tic severity will be allowed to continue treatment for another 8 weeks. Children in the placebo control group who did not show any improvement will be given the option to try guanfacine for an 8 week period. During this extension phase, participants will be required to attend 2-4 additional follow-up visits.

If you’d like to participate or have questions about it, contact:

Caitlin Tillberg
Clinical Research Coordinator
Tel: (203) 737-5317

Recruitment notice posted June 10, 2012

Long Island: Study on OCD seeks research participants

A new clinical research study for individuals with Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) at Hofstra University’s Anxiety and Depression Treatment Program is seeking research participants.

The study will provide FREE psychological treatment (Exposure and Response Prevention – ERP) for those who qualify. Research has shown that ERP is the optimal treatment for OCD. The study involves 16 biweekly sessions for the duration of 8 weeks, and is open to individuals who:

  1. are 18 years of age or older
  2. suffer with  primarily contamination-related obsessions and compulsions
  3. have not experienced any changes in medication in the past 3 months
  4. are not currently involved in any other treatment (i.e., ERP, supportive, psychodynamic, etc.) or are willing to temporarily suspend current treatment for the duration of the study.

Interested individuals are welcome to contact the primary investigator, Jennifer Wilson, Doctoral Student in the Department of Psychology, at

Recruitment notice posted February 13,, 2014