Hey y'all! Thanks so much for watching and asking great questions. I'll try my best to reply to the concerns that were brought up and go from there.
First, it's important to say that optogenetics likely has no plans for human use. In order for optogenetics to work, your genetic code has to be manipulated. That means that someone would need to modify the genetic code of an embryo. Considering the level of controversy surrounding genetic modification of humans, this is extremely unlikely. If it were ever to be considered for human use, it would (of course) bring up a ton of ethical concerns. However, if you were to modify all neurons, it would be difficult to get a specific response. I guess I'm trying to say that optogenetics doesn't have many practical uses at this time.
So you might be asking, "well then why is optogenetics useful for humans?" This gets to your implications question. If we are able to identify the neuronal pathway of a mental health disorder, then we can better develop therapeutic interventions for it. For example, we could create better medications that target those specific neurons or more accurately use deep brain stimulation. Imagine having a medication that affects only the neurons in your amygdala and reduces your panic response to normal levels. The more we know about these pathways, the better treatment we can provide!
As a footnote, since it was mentioned, ethical considerations are extremely important. Unfortunately, there are plenty of examples of horrible, unethical studies conducted by researchers in the name of science. However, today, all scientists are responsible for ethical, responsible research. Almost all professional associations, government agencies, and universities have adopted specific codes, rules, and policies relating to research ethics. Additionally, funding and approval processes are set up in a way to require ethical conduct in research and it eliminates studies where the benefits do not outweigh the damages. Failure to uphold an ethical code can result in loss of employment, formal disciplinary action, and criminal charges. It is not something that is taken lightly!
In any case, thanks again for watching! I'm glad you all liked it and I look forward to any other questions you may have!!