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New evidence shows how chronic stress predisposes brain to mental disorders
Date:2/11/2014

cytes in long-term and perhaps permanent changes in the brain that could set the stage for later mental problems. Oligodendrocytes also help form synapses sites where one cell talks to another and help control the growth pathway of axons, which make those synapse connections.

The fact that chronic stress also decreases the number of stem cells that mature into neurons could provide an explanation for how chronic stress also affects learning and memory, she said.

Kaufer is now conducting experiments to determine how stress in infancy affects the brain's white matter, and whether chronic early-life stress decreases resilience later in life. She also is looking at the effects of therapies, ranging from exercise to antidepressant drugs, that reduce the impact of stress and stress hormones.


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Contact: Robert Sanders
rlsanders@berkeley.edu
510-643-6998
University of California - Berkeley
Source:Eurekalert  

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