Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Researchers Lift A Corner Of The Veil Of Depression

Date:
March 18, 2006
Source:
VIB, Flanders Interuniversity Institute of Biotechnology
Summary:
About 1 in 10 Europeans has to contend with some form of depression during his or her life. But how people become depressed is still largely a mystery. With their recent research, scientists from VIB connected to the University of Antwerp in collaboration with scientists of the University of UmeΓ₯ in Sweden, are lifting a corner of the veil.

About 1 in 10 Europeans has to contend with some form of depression during his or her life. But how people become depressed is still largely a mystery. With their recent research, scientists from the Flanders Interuniversity Institute for Biotechnology (VIB) connected to the University of Antwerp in collaboration with scientists of the University of Umeε in Sweden, are lifting a corner of the veil. Their studies indicate that the TPH2 protein is involved in the development of depression and manic depression.

Depression and manic depression
Depression is one of the most prevalent disorders in the Western world, and, according to the World Health Organization, it will even be the No. 1 disorder in 2020. Ten to 15 per cent of the population − from all levels of society − experience depression during their lifetime; and about 5% has to contend with manic depression. Despite the high socio-economic costs and mortality rate, the causes of these psychiatric disorders are not yet known. However, scientists are in agreement that the origin of depression can be attributed to a combination of hereditary and environmental factors such as stress.

The role of serotonin
The hormone serotonin plays an important role in our brain chemistry. The amount of serotonin in the brain has a large influence on our thinking, emotions and behavior. Because antidepressants affect the level of serotonin in the brain, it has long been suspected that serotonin plays a role in the development of psychiatric disorders. So, the amount of serotonin that you produce and keep under control appears to be crucial in the fight against (manic) depression. Because the TPH2 protein is instrumental in regulating the serotonin level, scientists suspect that TPH2 plays a role in the development of psychiatric disorders.

Genetic study
Ann Van Den Bogaert and her colleagues from the research group of Jurgen Del-Favero have also been studying the role of TPH2 in the development of depression and manic depression. They have conducted a genetic study in which they compared the variation in the TPH2 gene between patients with depression and healthy individuals. The DNA of two random individuals are 99.9% identical − the 0.1% that is different contains the genetic variation that can originate disorders.

In collaboration with the Swedish research group under the direction of Rolf Adolfsson and Karl-Fredrik Norrback, the researchers studied the DNA of hundreds of Swedish patients with depression and manic depression and that of healthy control subjects. By comparing the genetic variations between the patients and healthy individuals, they have shown that in this Swedish population TPH2 is involved in the development of depression and manic depression.

Thus, their research brings us a step closer to a better understanding of these psychiatric disorders.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by VIB, Flanders Interuniversity Institute of Biotechnology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

VIB, Flanders Interuniversity Institute of Biotechnology. "Researchers Lift A Corner Of The Veil Of Depression." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 18 March 2006. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/03/060318232853.htm>.
VIB, Flanders Interuniversity Institute of Biotechnology. (2006, March 18). Researchers Lift A Corner Of The Veil Of Depression. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 18, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/03/060318232853.htm
VIB, Flanders Interuniversity Institute of Biotechnology. "Researchers Lift A Corner Of The Veil Of Depression." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/03/060318232853.htm (accessed September 18, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Corporal Punishment on Decline, Debate Renews

Corporal Punishment on Decline, Debate Renews

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) — Corporal punishment in the United States is on the decline, but there is renewed debate over its use after Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson was charged with child abuse. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
FDA Eyes Skin Shocks Used at Mass. School

FDA Eyes Skin Shocks Used at Mass. School

AP (Sep. 15, 2014) — The FDA is considering whether to ban devices used by the Judge Rotenberg Educational Center in Canton, Massachusetts, the only place in the country known to use electrical skin shocks as aversive conditioning for aggressive patients. (Sept. 15) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Shocker: Journalists Are Utterly Addicted To Coffee

Shocker: Journalists Are Utterly Addicted To Coffee

Newsy (Sep. 13, 2014) — A U.K. survey found that journalists consumed the most amount of coffee, but that's only the tip of the coffee-related statistics iceberg. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
'Magic Mushrooms' Could Help Smokers Quit

'Magic Mushrooms' Could Help Smokers Quit

Newsy (Sep. 11, 2014) — In a small study, researchers found that the majority of long-time smokers quit after taking psilocybin pills and undergoing therapy sessions. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins