Does Inflammation Cause Depression? Growing Evidence Suggests Immune System May Be Behind Condition
1 in 5 Canadians will experience a mental illness at some point in their life. Several clinical studies have found that reducing inflammation relieves symptoms of depression. This study was highlighted on several Canadian national news reports in November 2016.
- 48 medically stable, unmedicated (for at least 4 weeks) outpatients with major depression or bipolar disorder (DSMIV TR) participated.
- FMRI was used to examine brain activity.
LIMITS OF THIS STUDY
- This study lacked a healthy control group.
- Increased inflammation was not challenged with anti-inflammation medication to reduce the inflammation and improve connectivity within the brain.
WHAT WAS ALREADY KNOWN
- Depression symptoms improved in over 5,000 patients from 20 clinical trials (who did not respond to current antidepressant therapy) when treated with anti-inflammatory medication.
WHAT THIS STUDY ADDS
- Inflammation interferes with connectivity in the motivation and motor activity brain regions.
- Patients with low inflammation (red dots) had robust positive connectivity between regions of the brain responsible for motivation and motor activity. Those with high inflammation (blue dots) had no significant connectivity.
- Individuals with major depression or bipolar disorder who have high levels of inflammation may experience an antidepressant response from therapies that reduce inflammation.
SEASONAL AFFECTIVE DISORDER? FEELING BLUE?
- Studies show that the nutraceuticals and proteolytic enzymes in InflaCare-X effectively reduce inflammation.
- Serratiopeptidase has been shown to be as effective as diclofenac at reducing inflammation.
- Diclofenac has been shown to reduce some of the symptoms of depression
Felger, J.C., Li, Z., Haroon, E., Woolwine, B.J., Jung, M.Y., Hu, X. and Miller, A.H. (2016) Inflammation is associated with decreased functional connectivity within corticostriatal reward circuitry in depression. Mol Psychiatry 21: 1358-1365.
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