Current Research

Research at the BRTC is focused primarily on the development and evaluation of psychotherapies for individuals with severe and chronic personality disorders, with an emphasis on the understanding, assessment, and treatment of suicidal behaviors. To date, most research has focused on treatment development for suicidal individuals meeting criteria for borderline personality disorder. Most of this research has been funded by the National Institutes of Health.

Our current research is listed below. If you are interested in participating in or referring a client to a BRTC research study, please review the list and recruitment status.

Dialectical Behavior Therapy for Adults and Adolescents

Adult Study: Open for screening.
Adolescent Study: Open for screening.

We are conducting ongoing study of two comprehensive dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) programs: (a) a DBT program for adults and (b) a DBT program geared for adolescents and their caregivers. DBT is an evidence-based, cognitive-behavioral treatment used to treat people who experience severe, pervasive problems with emotion regulation that result in problematic behaviors such as multiple suicide attempts, nonsuicidal self-injury (e.g., cutting, burning), substance abuse, severe eating disorders, or a combination of these. Participants in both study programs will receive treatment consisting of the following components on a sliding fee payment scale.

  • DBT individual therapy
  • DBT skills training group targeting four sets of behavioral skills:
  • Mindfulness (attending to the present moment without judgment)
  • Interpersonal effectiveness (developing more effective social interactions)
  • Emotion regulation (better understanding and managing emotions)
  • Distress tolerance (increasing tolerance of distressing situations)
  • DBT phone coaching between sessions
  • DBT therapist consultation team

For more information about our adult study, see the DBT for Adults flyer . For more information about our adolescent study, see the DBT for Adolescents flyer. If you are interested in being screened for services in either study, please contact our Participant Coordinator at 206-543-9270 or

Friends and Family Dialectical Behavior Therapy Skills Training Group

Open for screening.

We are conducting ongoing study of a dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) skills training group geared for friends, family members, and caregivers of people with chronic mental and physical health problems such as borderline personality disorder, bipolar disorder, and Alzheimer’s disease.

For more information, see the Friends and Family DBT Skills Group Flyer. If you are interested in being screened for services in this project, please contact us at 206-543-3765 or

Computerized Dialectical Behavior Therapy Skills Training for Suicidal and Heavy Episodic Drinkers (iDBT-OASIS)

Recruitment has closed. Not currently accepting clients.

This study aims to evaluate the efficacy of a computerized DBT skills use in individuals who are suicidal and who drink alcohol to regulate their emotions. Problematic alcohol use has been found to be associated with suicidal thoughts and behaviors, particularly among individuals who drink alcohol to regulate emotions. Currently, there are very limited resources available to those presenting with these behaviors. Thus, an online treatment to improve such difficulties could help a group of people for which treatments are not widely available.

In this study we will evaluate a computerized version of dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) skills training, an intervention that was proven successful at reducing symptoms in individuals meeting criteria for various clinical problems such as depression, anxiety, borderline personality disorder, and substance abuse. The 8-week intervention will be administered in a computerized format, and the study will last 16 weeks. Qualifying participants can earn up to $120 for participating in assessments.

For more information, please call us at 206-616-1508.

What Is a Research Study?

Clinical research studies are conducted to investigate and evaluate various aspects of treatment and treatment delivery. Through these studies, researchers find new and better ways to understand and treat various problems and improve delivery of treatment. Participating in a research study is voluntary and requires that participants understand the risks, benefits, and procedures involved in the study. Individuals who elect to participate may later leave a study at any time.

More information on clinical trials at

Read our Notice of Privacy Practices

Read our Notice of Nondiscrimination and Accessibility