Electroencephalography (EEG) and related methodologies offer the promise of predicting the likelihood that novel therapies and compounds will exhibit clinical efficacy early in preclinical development. These analyses, including quantitative EEG (e.g. brain mapping) and evoked/event-related potentials (EP/ERP), can provide a physiological endpoint that may be used to facilitate drug discovery, optimize lead or candidate compound selection, as well as afford patient stratification and Go/No-Go decisions in clinical trials. Currently, the degree to which these different methodologies hold promise for translatability between preclinical models and the clinic have not been well summarized. To address this need, we review well-established and emerging EEG analytic approaches that are currently being integrated into drug discovery programs throughout preclinical development and clinical research. Furthermore, we present the use of EEG in the drug development process in the context of a number of major central nervous system disorders including Alzheimer's disease, schizophrenia, depression, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and pain. Lastly, we discuss the requirements necessary to consider EEG technologies as a biomarker. Many of these analyses show considerable translatability between species and are used to predict clinical efficacy from preclinical data. Nonetheless, the next challenge faced is the selection and validation of EEG endpoints that provide a set of robust and translatable biomarkers bridging preclinical and clinical programs.
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