From neural circuits to communities: an integrative multidisciplinary roadmap for global mental health

Michelle G. Craske
Mohammad M. Herzallah
Robin Nusslock
Vikram Patel
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Sufering due to mental health problems is rising inexorably in all regions of the world. One major reason is that our understanding of the causation, prevention and treatment of mental health problems has been hindered by an over-reliance on diagnostic categories. Yet there is growing evidence for alternative approaches from across multiple disciplines, including neuroscience, which elucidates neural regions and networks underlying specifc mental health experiences; cognitive science, which identifes cognitive functions and impairments relevant to mental health; clinical science, which identifes symptom patterns associated with cognitive dysfunctions; developmental science, which identifes environmental infuences on brain development in early life; social science, which identifes sociocultural infuences on mental health; intervention science, which identifes the ‘active ingredients’ of psychological interventions; and implementation science, which designs scalable interventions to efectively deliver these active ingredients. We propose an integrative model that converges these diverse disciplinary perspectives, from neural circuits to interventions, that can be delivered at scale, with a potential for higher coverage, greater personalization and greater efcacy than traditional diagnostic approaches. This integrative approach can lead to a radical opportunity to shift the needle on mental health-related sufering globally.