Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New Insights Into Autoimmunity And Depression

Date:
March 9, 2007
Source:
John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
Summary:
A new study sheds light on the brain pathways of depression in general and in central nervous system dysfunction in lupus particular.

Novel experiment links depression with a specific auto-antibody and central nervous system dysfunction in lupus.

Systemic lupus erythomatosus (SLE), often simply called lupus, is a complex autoimmune disease marked by joint pain, skin rashes, extreme fatigue, and depression, among other symptoms. Some studies have described a possible link between SLE's most severe psychiatric manifestation, psychosis, and a protein autoantibody associated with the central nervous system, anti-ribosomal P.

To investigate how an autoantibody could stimulate behavioral changes by interaction with the brain, researchers at Tel Aviv University set out to induce depressive hallmarks in mice. Their findings, presented in the March 2007 issue of Arthritis & Rheumatism shed light on the brain pathways of depression in general and in central nervous system dysfunction in SLE in particular.

Healthy female mice received injections, directly into the brain, of human anti-ribosomal P antibodies extracted from the blood sample of an SLE patient. For control purposes, equal numbers of mice were injected with normal human immunoglobin G. All the mice were then subjected to a series of tests: a forced swimming test in a glass beaker partially filled water to evaluate escape-oriented behaviors, such as rearing and jumping; rotarod and grip strength tests to gauge motor function; a staircase test; a swim T-maze test to assess cognitive function; and a passive avoidance test to measure the ability of mice to remember a foot shock delivered 24-hours earlier.

Depression-like behavior was strongly observed in the performance of anti-ribosomal P antibody-injected mice on the forced swimming test. The immobility time of these mice was twice as high as that of the control group, indicating a state of despair. In the remaining tests of cognitive and motor functions, there were no significant differences detected between the mice in each group, ruling out neurological damage.

In an additional experiment, the "depressed" mice were randomly divided into treatment groups. Some mice were treated with fluoxetine, the antidepressant marketed as Prozac, and some mice were treated with haloperidol, a psychotropic drug used to treat anxiety, addiction, and depression. To determine the effectiveness of each therapy, mice were subjected to repeating the forced swimming, staircase, and rotarod tests. Depression-like behavior was significantly blocked by long-term treatment with fluoxetine, but not by short- or long-term treatment with haloperidol.

At the culmination of the experiments, the brains of mice were sectioned and scrutinized through immunostaining. The staining pattern delineated the limbic system, which regulates the automatic nervous system's response to stress. It also highlighted areas of the brain associated with the sense of smell.

These findings provide a novel line of research into the mechanisms underlying the limbic and olfactory pathways in depression. Imaging studies both in patients with clinical depression and patients with SLE could help determine whether these pathways are similarly affected in humans.

"The relevance of the results to the involvement of the central nervous system in SLE is another intriguing aspect of the present study," notes its leading author, Yehuda Shoenfeld, M.D., while emphasizing the need for further investigation through large-scale clinical studies. "Elucidating the mechanisms by which anti-ribosomal P induces behavioral changes may lead to novel therapeutic advances for SLE patients with depression," Dr. Shoenfeld reflects.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

John Wiley & Sons, Inc.. "New Insights Into Autoimmunity And Depression." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 March 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/02/070227105339.htm>.
John Wiley & Sons, Inc.. (2007, March 9). New Insights Into Autoimmunity And Depression. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/02/070227105339.htm
John Wiley & Sons, Inc.. "New Insights Into Autoimmunity And Depression." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/02/070227105339.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Dieting At A Young Age Might Lead To Harmful Health Habits

Dieting At A Young Age Might Lead To Harmful Health Habits

Newsy (July 30, 2014) Researchers say women who diet at a young age are at greater risk of developing harmful health habits, including eating disorders and alcohol abuse. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
It's Not Just Facebook: OKCupid Experiments With Users Too

It's Not Just Facebook: OKCupid Experiments With Users Too

Newsy (July 29, 2014) If you've been looking for love online, there's a chance somebody has been looking at how you're looking. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Your Face Can Leave A Good Or Bad First Impression

How Your Face Can Leave A Good Or Bad First Impression

Newsy (July 29, 2014) Researchers have found certain facial features can make us seem more attractive or trustworthy. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Losing Sleep Leaves You Vulnerable To 'False Memories'

Losing Sleep Leaves You Vulnerable To 'False Memories'

Newsy (July 27, 2014) A new study shows sleep deprivation can make it harder for people to remember specific details of an event. 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