Science News about Depression
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- Mechanism for Postpartum Depression Found in Mice
- Press Release July 30, 2008
Researchers have pinpointed a mechanism in the brains of mice that could explain why some human mothers become depressed following childbirth.
- Errant Stress/Immune Indicators Detected in Depression-Prone Women’s Sweat
- Science Update July 29, 2008
An experimental skin patch test detected abnormal levels of markers for immune function and stress in the sweat of women with histories of depression, NIMH researchers say.
- Mice Expressing Human Genes Bred to Help Unravel Mental Disorders
- Science Update June 26, 2008
New mouse strains engineered to express human genes related to mental disorders are being developed under a recently-launched grant program from NIMH’s Division of Neuroscience and Basic Behavioral Science.
- Preventive Treatment May Help Head Off Depression Following a Stroke
- Science Update May 28, 2008
For the first time, researchers show that preventive treatment with an antidepressant medication or talk therapy can significantly reduce the risk or delay the start of depression following an acute stroke, according to a study funded by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), part of the National Institutes of Health. These findings differ from past studies attempting to prevent poststroke depression. The study appears in the May 28, 2008, issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.
- Medication-only Therapy and Combination Therapy Both Cost Effective for Treating Teens with Depression
- Science Update May 12, 2008
Treating depressed teenagers with either the antidepressant fluoxetine (Prozac) or a combination of fluoxetine and psychotherapy can be cost effective, according to a recent economic analysis of the NIMH-funded Treatment for Adolescents with Depression Study (TADS). The study was published online ahead of print April 15, 2008, in the American Journal of Psychiatry.
- Studies Identify Subtle Genetic Changes’ Risk for Mental Disorders; May Lead to Targets for New, Better, Therapies
- Science Update May 05, 2008
WASHINGTON, DC, May 5 — Epigenetics — the examination of how environmental factors like diet, stress, and post-natal maternal behavior can change gene function without altering DNA sequence — plays a major role in depression and in the actions of antidepressant medications. New studies in the field are revealing new molecular targets for better therapies for depression, scientists say.
- Human Brain Appears “Hard-Wired” for Hierarchy
- Press Release April 23, 2008
Human imaging studies have for the first time identified brain circuitry associated with social status, according to researchers at the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) of the National Institutes of Health. They found that different brain areas are activated when a person moves up or down in a pecking order – or simply views perceived social superiors or inferiors. Circuitry activated by important events responded to a potential change in hierarchical status as much as it did to winning money.
- Journal Highlights Effectiveness of Research Based Psychotherapies for Youth
- Science Update April 15, 2008
Reviews of the current research on psychosocial and behavioral therapies, or psychotherapies, for children and adolescents found a number of "well established" and "probably efficacious" treatments for many mental disorders. For example, six were "probably efficacious" for anxiety disorders, and two were "well established" for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), according to scientists funded by NIMH and the National Institute on Drug Abuse, divisions of the National Institutes of Health.
- Maintenance Treatment Crucial for Teens’ Recovery from Depression
- Science Update April 08, 2008
Long-term maintenance treatment is likely to sustain improvement and prevent recurrence among adolescents with major depression, according to an NIMH-funded study published in the April 2008 issue of the Archives of General Psychiatry.
- Paying More for Prescriptions May Limit Seniors’ Access to Antidepressants
- Science Update April 02, 2008
New cost-sharing policies may prevent some older adults diagnosed with depression from filling new antidepressant prescriptions, according to an analysis published in the April 2008 issue of Psychiatric Services.
- State Survey Finds FDA “Black Box” Warning Correlates with Curtailed Antidepressant Prescriptions
- Science Update March 14, 2008
After the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a “black box” warning on antidepressant medications, Nebraskan doctors began prescribing fewer antidepressant medications to children and teens and referring more patients to specialists, according to a state survey. The study, which involved NIMH-funded researchers, was published in the February 2008 issue of the Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychopharmacology.
- One Gene Overrides Another to Prevent Brain Changes that Foster Depression
- Science Update March 12, 2008
For what appears to be the first time in humans, scientists have detected an interaction between genes that may help prevent brain changes that increase vulnerability to depression.
- Teens with Treatment-resistant Depression More Likely to Get Better with Switch to Combination Therapy
- Press Release February 26, 2008
Teens with difficult-to-treat depression who do not respond to a first antidepressant medication are more likely to get well if they switch to another antidepressant medication and add psychotherapy rather than just switching to another antidepressant, according to a large, multi-site trial funded by the National Institutes of Health’s National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH). The results of the Treatment of SSRI-resistant Depression in Adolescents (TORDIA) trial were published February 27, 2008, in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).
- Co-occurring Anxiety Complicates Treatment Response for Those with Major Depression
- Science Update February 25, 2008
People with major depression accompanied by high levels of anxiety are significantly less likely to benefit from antidepressant medication than those without anxiety, according to a study based on data from the NIMH-funded Sequenced Treatment Alternatives to Relieve Depression (STAR*D) study. The study was published online ahead of print in January 2008, in the American Journal of Psychiatry.
- Primary Care Doctors May Overlook Elderly Patients’ Mental Health
- Science Update February 25, 2008
Doctors spend little time discussing mental health issues with their older patients and rarely refer them to a mental health specialist even if they show symptoms of severe depression, according to an NIMH-funded study published December 2007 in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.
- Genetic Variation May Influence Response to Depression Treatment
- Science Update February 20, 2008
Variations in a gene known as TREK1 may explain some forms of treatment-resistant major depression, according to a new study analyzing genetic data from the NIMH-funded Sequenced Treatment Alternatives to Relieve Depression (STAR*D) trial. The study was published online February 20, 2008, in Neuropsychopharmacology.
- Team Care for Depressed Older Adults Cuts Overall Medical Costs
- Science Update February 14, 2008
A team approach to depression treatment for older adults, already shown to be effective, is also less expensive than usual care, according to an NIMH-funded study published February 2008 in the American Journal of Managed Care.
- Tomorrow’s Antidepressants: Skip the Serotonin Boost?
- Science Update February 14, 2008
New research adds to evidence of potentially better molecular targets in the brain to treat depression and other mental disorders, according to NIMH-funded scientists.
- Gene Variants Protect Against Adult Depression Triggered by Childhood Stress
- Press Release February 04, 2008
Certain variations in a gene that helps regulate response to stress tend to protect adults who were abused in childhood from developing depression, according to new research funded by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), part of the National Institutes of Health. Adults who had been abused but didn’t have the variations in the gene had twice the symptoms of moderate to severe depression, compared to those with the protective variations.
- Mood Disorders Predict Later Substance Abuse Problems
- Science Update January 09, 2008
People with manic symptoms and bipolar disorder type II are at significant risk of later developing an alcohol abuse or dependence problem, a long-term study conducted in Switzerland confirms. The study was published in the January 2008 issue of the Archives of General Psychiatry.
- Hurricane Katrina Survivors Lack Access to Mental Health Services
- Science Update December 17, 2007
The majority of Hurricane Katrina survivors who developed mental disorders after the disaster are not receiving the mental health services they need, and many who were receiving mental health care prior to the hurricane were not able to continue with treatment, according to an NIMH-funded study published online ahead of print December 17, 2007, in the American Journal of Psychiatry.
- Depression Linked to Bone-Thinning in Premenopausal Women
- Press Release November 26, 2007
Premenopausal women with even mild depression have less bone mass than do their nondepressed peers, a study funded in part by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), shows.
- Depression’s Flip Side Shares its Circuitry
- Science Update November 14, 2007
Humans tend to be overly optimistic about the future, sometimes underestimating risks and making unrealistic plans, notes NIMH grantee Elizabeth Phelps, Ph.D., New York University.
- Depressed Adolescents Respond Best to Combination Treatment
- Press Release October 01, 2007
A combination of psychotherapy and antidepressant medication appears to be the most effective treatment for adolescents with major depressive disorder—more than medication alone or psychotherapy alone, according to results from a major clinical trial funded by the National Institutes of Health’s National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH).
- Mental Disorders Account for Large Percentage of Adult Role Disability
- Science Update October 01, 2007
An NIMH-funded study finds that more than half of U.S. adults have a mental or physical condition that prevents them from working or conducting their usual duties (e.g., role disability) for several days each year, and a large portion of those days can be attributed to mental disorders.
- Scientists May Have Found Long-Pursued Binding Site for Antidepressants
- Science Update September 28, 2007
NIMH-funded scientists have a major new clue as to where the long-pursued binding site for commonly used antidepressants – potentially the site that triggers the medications’ effects – may be on brain cells.
- Genes Linked to Suicidal Thinking During Antidepressant Treatment
- Press Release September 27, 2007
Specific variations in two genes are linked to suicidal thinking that sometimes occurs in people taking the most commonly prescribed class of antidepressants, according to a large study led by scientists at the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH) National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH).
- Workplace Depression Screening, Outreach and Enhanced Treatment Improves Productivity, Lowers Employer Costs
- Press Release September 26, 2007
Enhanced and systematic efforts to identify and treat depression in the workplace significantly improves employee health and productivity, likely leading to lower costs overall for the employer, according to a study published September 26, 2007, in the Journal of the American Medical Association. The study was funded by the National Institutes of Health’s National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH).
- Drops in SSRI prescription rates may coincide with increases in youth suicides
- Science Update September 19, 2007
A 2004 spike in suicide rates may have coincided with a drop in antidepressant prescriptions for youth, following warnings from U.S and European regulatory agencies that the medications might trigger suicidal thoughts.
- New Technique Pinpoints Crossroads of Depression in Rat Brain
- Science Update August 02, 2007
NIMH-funded scientists have developed a new high-speed technique for imaging brain activity and used it to pinpoint a circuit signal in rats that may be at the crossroads of depression — a possible "final common pathway" where different causes of, and treatments for, the disorder appear to converge.
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- Out of Sync With the World: Body Clocks of Depressed People Are Altered at Cell LevelExternal Link: Please review our disclaimer.
- Nerve Stimulation for Severe Depression Changes Brain FunctionExternal Link: Please review our disclaimer.
- Nearly 20 Percent of Suicidal Youths Have Guns in Their HomeExternal Link: Please review our disclaimer.