Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Exploring the antidepressant effects of testosterone

Date:
April 2, 2012
Source:
Elsevier
Summary:
Testosterone, the primary male sex hormone, appears to have antidepressant properties, but the exact mechanisms underlying its effects have remained unclear. Scientists have now discovered that a specific pathway in the hippocampus, a brain region involved in memory formation and regulation of stress responses, plays a major role in mediating testosterone's effects.

Testosterone, the primary male sex hormone, appears to have antidepressant properties, but the exact mechanisms underlying its effects have remained unclear. Nicole Carrier and Mohamed Kabbaj, scientists at Florida State University, are actively working to elucidate these mechanisms.

Related Articles


They've discovered that a specific pathway in the hippocampus, a brain region involved in memory formation and regulation of stress responses, plays a major role in mediating testosterone's effects, according to their new report in Biological Psychiatry.

Compared to men, women are twice as likely to suffer from an affective disorder like depression. Men with hypogonadism, a condition where the body produces no or low testosterone, also suffer increased levels of depression and anxiety. Testosterone replacement therapy has been shown to effectively improve mood.

Although it may seem that much is already known, it is of vital importance to fully characterize how and where these effects are occurring so that scientists can better target the development of future antidepressant therapies.

To advance this goal, the scientists performed multiple experiments in neutered adult male rats. The rats developed depressive-like behaviors that were reversed with testosterone replacement.

They also "identified a molecular pathway called MAPK/ERK2 (mitogen activated protein kinase/ extracellular regulated kinase 2) in the hippocampus that plays a major role in mediating the protective effects of testosterone," said Kabbaj.

This suggests that the proper functioning of ERK2 is necessary before the antidepressant effects of testosterone can occur. It also suggests that this pathway may be a promising target for antidepressant therapies.

Kabbaj added, "Interestingly, the beneficial effects of testosterone were not associated with changes in neurogenesis (generation of new neurons) in the hippocampus as it is the case with other classical antidepressants like imipramine (Tofranil) and fluoxetine (Prozac)."

In results published elsewhere by the same group, testosterone has shown beneficial effects only in male rats, not in female rats.


Story Source:

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


Journal Reference:

  1. Nicole Carrier, Mohamed Kabbaj. Extracellular Signal-Regulated Kinase 2 Signaling in the Hippocampal Dentate Gyrus Mediates the Antidepressant Effects of Testosterone. Biological Psychiatry, 2012; 71 (7): 642 DOI: 10.1016/j.biopsych.2011.11.028

Cite This Page:

Elsevier. "Exploring the antidepressant effects of testosterone." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 2 April 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/04/120402093750.htm>.
Elsevier. (2012, April 2). Exploring the antidepressant effects of testosterone. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 26, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/04/120402093750.htm
Elsevier. "Exploring the antidepressant effects of testosterone." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/04/120402093750.htm (accessed November 26, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

From Popcorn To Vending Snacks: FDA Ups Calorie Count Rules

From Popcorn To Vending Snacks: FDA Ups Calorie Count Rules

Newsy (Nov. 25, 2014) — The US FDA is announcing new calorie rules on Tuesday that will require everywhere from theaters to vending machines to include calorie counts. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Daily Serving Of Yogurt Could Reduce Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes

Daily Serving Of Yogurt Could Reduce Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes

Newsy (Nov. 25, 2014) — Need another reason to eat yogurt every day? Researchers now say it could reduce a person's risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Madagascar Working to Contain Plague Outbreak

Madagascar Working to Contain Plague Outbreak

AFP (Nov. 24, 2014) — Madagascar said Monday it is trying to contain an outbreak of plague -- similar to the Black Death that swept Medieval Europe -- that has killed 40 people and is spreading to the capital Antananarivo. Duration: 00:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Are Female Bosses More Likely To Be Depressed?

Are Female Bosses More Likely To Be Depressed?

Newsy (Nov. 24, 2014) — A new study links greater authority with increased depressive symptoms among women in the workplace. 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