Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Laser Dissection Of Depression In The Brain

Date:
April 24, 2008
Source:
Molecular Psychiatry
Summary:
Hyperactivity of certain brain regions is considered to be pivotal in symptoms of depression. Using post-mortem brain tissue collected by the Netherlands Brain Bank, a Chinese-Dutch research group has, for the first time, isolated these regions from the brains of depressed patients and controls using a laser dissection microscope. Molecular changes were found that may explain the hyperactivity of these brain areas and may thus be potential targets for new therapeutic strategies.

Hyperactivity of certain brain regions is considered to be pivotal in symptoms of depression. Chinese investigators from Hefei and Dutch researchers in Amsterdam have collaborated using for the first time a combination of new elegant methodology in Depression research. They used postmortem human brain tissue that was donated to the Netherlands Brain Bank for research purposes and investigated a region in the basal part of the brain, the hypothalamus, that is known to be of crucial importance for the development of symptoms of depression.

Related Articles


This region is 6 mm3 large and is called the Paraventricular Nucleus (PVN) since it is situated along the third ventricle of the brain. This brain area is central in the regulations of our normal stress response, while a too high activity of the PVN is a pivotal characteristic of depression.

The hypothalamus consists of a large number of very small specialized cell groups that all have different functions and should thus be studied separately, hence the necessity of the application of the methodology used.

Corticotrophin-releasing factor (CRF) cells in the PVN of human hypothalamus are the central driving force of the stress response and are hyperactive in depression. The investigators sampled the PVN using new technology in psychiatry to study its molecular changes related to CRF. Frozen hypothalami of 7 depressed patients and 7 controls of the same age, the same sex and obtained the same time after death.

The frozen brain structures were serially sectioned and the PVN was dissected using a microscope with a laser beam. The micro-laser-dissected material was subsequently studied with a very sensitive and specific quantitative molecular technique for the analysis of gene expression (qPCR).

From the 16 gene products that were studied, because they were presumed to be involved in CRF activation in depression, 5 were found to show significant changes. The molecular changes found may not only explain the hyperactivity of the CRF cells but may also be potential targets for new therapeutic strategies.

Journal reference: Shan-Shan Wang, Willem Kamphuis, Inge Huitinga, Jiang-Ning Zhou 1 and Dick F. Swaab. Gene Expression Analysis in the Human Hypothalamus in Depression by Laser Micro-Dissection and Real Time PCR: the presence of multiple receptor imbalances. Molecular Psychiatry advance online publication 22 APRIL 2008.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Molecular Psychiatry. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Molecular Psychiatry. "Laser Dissection Of Depression In The Brain." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 24 April 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080422171500.htm>.
Molecular Psychiatry. (2008, April 24). Laser Dissection Of Depression In The Brain. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 5, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080422171500.htm
Molecular Psychiatry. "Laser Dissection Of Depression In The Brain." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080422171500.htm (accessed March 5, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Mind & Brain News

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Former NFL Players Donate Brains to Science

Former NFL Players Donate Brains to Science

Reuters - US Online Video (Mar. 3, 2015) Super Bowl champions Sidney Rice and Steve Weatherford donate their brains, post-mortem, to scientific research into repetitive brain trauma. Jillian Kitchener reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Alzheimer's Protein Plaque Found In 20-Year-Olds

Alzheimer's Protein Plaque Found In 20-Year-Olds

Newsy (Mar. 3, 2015) Researchers found an abnormal protein associated with Alzheimer&apos;s disease in the brains of 20-year-olds. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
This Nasal Treatment Could Help Ease Migraine Pain

This Nasal Treatment Could Help Ease Migraine Pain

Newsy (Mar. 2, 2015) Researchers gave lidocaine to 112 patients, and about 88 percent of the subjects said they needed less migraine-relief medicine the next day. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Facebook Use Can Lead To Depression

How Facebook Use Can Lead To Depression

Newsy (Mar. 1, 2015) Margaret Duffy of the University of Missouri talks about her study on the social network and the envy and depression that Facebook use can cause. 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:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

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