Trigger Stress Genes in the Brain

Depression is the most health complaints. Scientists in New Haven, Connecticut, United States, which examined the problem of depression find that there is a gene closely linked to healthy brain affect depression in humans. The researchers hope this discovery may lead to new treatments and early diagnosis of the condition.

The team from Yale University found that MKP-1 gene, the gene that serves as the guardian of a healthy brain has been identified as a major cause of depression. MKP-1 known to two times more active action to the person who is depressed compared with healthy people.

These nerves, as reported by the journal Nature Medicine, is used to transfer and process information in the brain with electrical and chemical signals.

According to Professor Ronald Duman, the presence of MKP-1 is very interesting because these genes direct action to maintain healthy brain function. “This could be the main cause. Or at least one major factor, with signal abnormalities that lead to depression,” he said.

The scientists had identified the gene after analyzing brain tissue samples from 21 patients diagnosed with depression die. Samples were compared with those people from 18 individuals free of depression. Apparently, MKP-1 is found two times more active in the brains of people who are depressed.

The results of this study reinforce the fact that some physiologic processes involved in clinical depression. It also explains the cause of 40 percent of depressed patients who fail to respond to the drugs currently available. Often it takes several weeks or months of anti-depressant drug consumption to affect the healing process.

Duman and the team also found that when MKP-1 is disabled in mice, these rodents became resistant to stress. And when the gene is activated, the mice showed symptoms of depression.