Navigation Links
It's in the genes: Study opens door to new treatment of the blues

A Florida State University scientist used a gene transfer technique to block the expression of a gene associated with clinical depression in a new study of mice that could lead to better treatment of human beings with this condition.

Carlos Bolanos, an assistant professor of psychology and neuroscience, was among a team of researchers that identified the role of a gene called Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF) in the development of social aversion. Mice treated with a transfer technique to block expression of the BDNF gene in a small area of the mid-brain did not develop the aversion despite repeated encounters with aggressive rodents. The study will be published in the Feb. 10 issue of the journal Science.

"It's very exciting because we are slowly but surely identifying mechanisms in the brain underlying psychiatric disorders that have a social withdrawal component, such as social phobia, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder, and that will allow us to find better ways to treat these disorders," Bolanos said. "This study is significant because it gives us an animal model of the disorder and opens up new areas of study."

In the experiment, the researchers subjected mice to daily bouts of social threats and subordination by aggressive rodents and continuous sensory contact with the aggressors for 10 days. Afterward, the defeated mice avoided any social contact by spending most of their time in the corner of their cages opposite other mice, including those that had not been aggressive toward them.

The defeated mice also displayed little interest in sexual interaction and showed decreased preference for palatable sugary drinks over plain water. A month later, the rodents' interest in sex and sweets had returned, but the social avoidance remained.

The researchers found that long-term use of antidepressants, such as fluoxetine (Prozac) and imipramine (Trofanil), were successful in reversing the social withdrawal in the se mice. But the successful use of the gene therapy approach to block the expression of the BDNF gene in a highly localized area of the brain suggests the potential for the development of new drug therapies with fewer side effects.

"We have made great progress in our understanding of how antidepressants work, but despite years of research, our knowledge of the changes that these drugs induce in the brain is rudimentary," Bolanos said. "Though available treatments for depression are generally safe and effective, they are still not ideal. It takes long-term treatment before seeing clinical benefit, and potential side effects are a serious problem. The findings of this study provide exciting new leads and point to potential strategies, such as developing drugs capable of targeting specific proteins in restricted brain areas."


'"/>

Source:Florida State University


Related biology news :

1. Beyond genes: Lipid helps cell wall protein fold into proper shape
2. Novel Asthma Study Shows Multiple Genetic Input Required; Single-gene Solution Shot Down
3. Emory Study Tests Bone Marrow Stem Cells to Improve Circulation in Legs
4. UCLA Study Shows One-Third of Drug Ads in Medical Journals Do Not Contain References Supporting Medical Claims
5. Study Demonstrates Gene Expression Microarrays are Comparable and Reproducible
6. Study Links Ebola Outbreaks To Animal Carcasses
7. Breakthrough Microarray-based Technology for the Study of Cancer
8. NYU Study Reveals How Brains Immune System Fights Viral Encephalitis
9. Study finds more than one-third of human genome regulated by RNA
10. Leukemia Drug Breakthrough Study In New England Journal Of Medicine
11. Study identifies predictors of HIV drug resistance in patients beginning triple therapy
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:1/18/2016)... Jan. 18, 2016  Extenua Inc., a pioneering ... the use and access of ubiquitous on-premise and ... with American Cyber.  ... leading transformational C4ISR and Cyber initiatives in support ... latest proven technology solutions," said Steve Visconti ...
(Date:1/13/2016)... January 13, 2016 ... addition of the  "India Biometrics Authentication ... Forecast (2015-2020)"  report to their ... has announced the addition of the  ... - Estimation & Forecast (2015-2020)" ...
(Date:1/8/2016)... Kingdom , Jan. 8, 2016   Bruin Biometrics, ... today announced the closing of a $9 million financing. The ... the financing will be used to accelerate the commercialization of ... early-stage pressure ulcers. United Kingdom ... Mark approval. The device,s introduction has been met with enthusiasm ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/9/2016)... Philadelphia, PA (PRWEB) , ... February 09, 2016 , ... ... balance, the 2016 Wharton Health Care Business Conference will bring together over 500 top ... ahead for an industry in transformation. The conference, organized by MBA students of the ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... PA (PRWEB) , ... February 09, 2016 , ... Tunnell ... Europe. Based in Paris, he will focus on acquiring new accounts and work ... met. , “Fred brings to our European clients more than 15 ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... 2016 This market research report on the ... prospects of the market in terms of revenue (USD ... in the manufacture of microbiology culture media and related ... market snapshot providing the overall information of various market ... section also provides the overall information and data analysis ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... Feb. 8, 2016 /PRNewswire/ - BIOREM Inc. (TSXV: BRM) ("Biorem" ... ten finalists for clean technology companies in the TSX Venture ... 10 companies listed on the TSX Venture Exchange, in each ... clean technology & life sciences, diversified industries and ... given to return on investment, market cap growth, trading volume ...
Breaking Biology Technology: