For Mind Body Medicine
at Massachusetts General Hospital

The Science Behind
Relaxation Response
and Building Resiliency

Join Our Network

The Science Behind
Relaxation Response
and Building Resiliency

Join Our Network

Our Research

Our Research Mission

The Benson-Henry Institute’s research center is dedicated to examining the effects and mechanisms of mind/body approaches to medicine, as well as the most effective clinical applications of these techniques.

Why Does Research Matter?

While we may all recognize at some level that Mind Body Medicine’s inexpensive and fulfilling approach to health care has value, research is essential, because it helps us:

  • Determine general vs. specific benefit
  • Determine target disorders and populations for which it is effective
  • Increase credibility and stature in the field of medicine
  • Understand mechanisms by which mind-body practices work

A Multifaceted Research Approach

At BHI, we are probing the molecular mechanism of Mind Body Medicine techniques. Because blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) are accessible, we are are looking at how mind/body approaches change PBMC cells. At the genetic level, we are also studying the level of mRNA (transcriptomics) in order to see changes in gene expression over time in any tissue.

Current Research Projects Include:

  • Comparing the effects and mechanisms of three stress reduction training programs on psychological, biological, neurological and genomic outcomes
  • Measuring the genomic and psychosocial effects of the Relaxation Response Resiliency Program (3RP) on patients with MGUS and Smoldering Multiple Myeloma
  • Developing a Coping and Resiliency Enhancement Program (CARE)  for medical interpreters in cancer care

Collection of Herbert Benson Papers

The collection of Herbert Benson papers [H MS c238] is part of the Harvard Medical Library collection at MGH’s Countway Library. If you are interested in viewing this collection, please schedule an appointment with Countway. A retrieval request takes about 1-2 days to process. Access to some portions of this research is restricted.

Countway Library