Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New biological explanation for sadness in early postpartum

Date:
May 6, 2010
Source:
Centre for Addiction and Mental Health
Summary:
Greater levels of a brain protein called monoamine oxidase A (MAO-A) may explain why postpartum blues and clinical depression are so common after childbirth, according to a new study.

Greater levels of a brain protein called monoamine oxidase A (MAO-A) may explain why postpartum blues and clinical depression are so common after childbirth, according to a new study published in the Archives of General Psychiatry.

Using an advanced brain imaging method, researchers at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health discovered that levels of brain MAO-A in healthy women four to six days after delivery were 43% greater as compared to women not recently pregnant. The findings were strongest on day 5, the day when postpartum blues is usually the most severe.

MAO-A removes chemicals like serotonin that help maintain a normal mood. Greater MAO-A levels mean that this removal process is overly active making people feel sad.

"Understanding the biology of postpartum blues is important because when it is severe it leads to clinical level postpartum depression, the most common complication of childbearing affecting 13% of mothers, and one that can have a devastating impact. We hope this information may be used in the future to create dietary supplements that could provide the nutrients removed by high MAO-A and lower the risk for postpartum depression," according to Dr. Jeffrey Meyer, principal investigator for the study.

The brain imaging technique is called positron emission tomography (PET). VP of Research Dr. Bruce Pollock explains, "CAMH has the only PET centre in the world dedicated solely to mental health and addiction research. As a result we were able to apply this high level technology to better understand postpartum depression, an important research direction in mood disorders."

The study was funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Ontario Mental Health Foundation, the National Alliance for Research in Depression and Schizophrenia, and the Canadian Foundation for Innovation. Dr. Meyer holds a Canada Research Chair in the Neurochemistry of Major Depression.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Centre for Addiction and Mental Health. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Julia Sacher; Alan A. Wilson; Sylvain Houle; Pablo Rusjan; Sabrina Hassan; Peter M. Bloomfield; Donna E. Stewart; Jeffrey H. Meyer. Elevated Brain Monoamine Oxidase A Binding in the Early Postpartum Period. Archives of General Psychiatry, 2010; 67 (5): 468 DOI: 10.1001/archgenpsychiatry.2010.32

Cite This Page:

Centre for Addiction and Mental Health. "New biological explanation for sadness in early postpartum." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 May 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/05/100504102130.htm>.
Centre for Addiction and Mental Health. (2010, May 6). New biological explanation for sadness in early postpartum. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/05/100504102130.htm
Centre for Addiction and Mental Health. "New biological explanation for sadness in early postpartum." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/05/100504102130.htm (accessed August 21, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Do More Wedding Guests Make A Happier Marriage?

Do More Wedding Guests Make A Happier Marriage?

Newsy (Aug. 20, 2014) — A new study found couples who had at least 150 guests at their weddings were more likely to report being happy in their marriages. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Charter Schools Alter Post-Katrina Landscape

Charter Schools Alter Post-Katrina Landscape

AP (Aug. 20, 2014) — Nine years after Hurricane Katrina, charter schools are the new reality of public education in New Orleans. The state of Louisiana took over most of the city's public schools after the killer storm in 2005. (Aug. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researcher Testing on-Field Concussion Scanners

Researcher Testing on-Field Concussion Scanners

AP (Aug. 19, 2014) — Four Texas high school football programs are trying out an experimental system designed to diagnose concussions on the field. The technology is in response to growing concern over head trauma in America's most watched sport. (Aug. 19) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Kids' Drawings At Age 4 Linked To Intelligence At Age 14

Kids' Drawings At Age 4 Linked To Intelligence At Age 14

Newsy (Aug. 19, 2014) — A study by King's College London says there's a link between how well kids draw at age 4 and how intelligent they are later in life. 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