Navigation Links
A blood test for depression?

Philadelphia, PA, 22 July, 2010 - Blood tests have been extremely important tools aiding doctors in making medical diagnoses and in guiding the treatment of many diseases. However, psychiatry is one area of medicine where there are few diagnostic blood tests.

New scientific fields may someday generate blood tests that can be used for these purposes. Some of the areas under increasingly intensive study are genetics, the study of variations in the genes (DNA) that can be extracted from blood cells, and genomics like proteomics, the measurement of the levels of specific proteins in the blood, and gene expression profiling, which measures the levels of RNA produced from DNA as an indication of the level of the "activity" of particular genes.

Using the latter approach, Dutch researchers evaluated blood gene expression profiles in healthy individuals and patients diagnosed with major depressive disorder, or MDD. They identified a set of seven genes in whole blood that was able to distinguish un-medicated MDD patients from healthy controls.

"This is a first, but major step in providing a molecular diagnostic tool for depression," explained Dr. Sabine Spijker, corresponding author of this study. Although psychiatry already has specific criteria for diagnosing mental health disorders, this type of diagnosis would be unbiased and particularly valuable for those with whom it is more difficult to have a conversation. It may also eventually assist in reducing the stigma associated with mental health problems.

"It is far too early to be confident that gene expression profiling will lead us to diagnostic or prognostic tests for depression. However, the objective of this line of research is extremely important," cautions Dr. John Krystal, Editor of Biological Psychiatry. "In the past, many types of tests have been explored as potential diagnostic markers, but they all have failed to have sufficient sensitivity and specificity to guide doctors in making psychiatric diagnoses or choosing between treatments. I look forward to seeing whether the patterns of gene expression profiling are replicable and diagnostically specific as multiple groups report their findings."

Most importantly, the authors hope that this study is a stepping stone for finding markers that might predict treatment outcome and recurrence.


Contact: Maureen Hunter

Related medicine news :

1. Could PCBs Help Boost Blood Pressure?
2. Patients Lost Blood Can Be Reused in Trauma Surgery
3. New discovery brings hope to treatment of incurable blood cancer
4. Rare Blood Vessel Disease Could Have New Treatment Option
5. Monitoring Blood Pressure at Home May Help Keep It Low
6. Dietary Cocoa Flavanols Improve Vascular And Blood Pressure Measures For Coronary Artery Disease Patients
7. Tight Blood Pressure Control Doesnt Help All Diabetics: Study
8. Researchers identify factors behind blood-making stem cells
9. Diagnostic blood test can identify rare lung disease
10. Tight Blood Sugar Control in Older Diabetics May Not Reduce Heart Risk
11. Insulin Pump With Blood Sugar Sensor May Improve on Injections
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... November 27, 2015 , ... Avid collector, Andrew Hawley ... Michigan boxing style concert posters. This is one of Joplin's most famous and beautiful ... at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. The According to Hawley, "It is ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... 27, 2015 , ... Indosoft Inc., developer and distributor of ... 11 LTS (Long Term Support) into its Q-Suite 5.10 product line. , Making ... with a version of Asterisk that will receive not only security fixes, but ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... MI (PRWEB) , ... November 26, 2015 , ... ... for substance abuse located in central Michigan, have come together on Thanksgiving Day ... specially produced video, available for viewing on the Serenity Point YouTube channel, patients ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... November 26, 2015 , ... Inevitably when ... Many customers choose to buy during the Black Friday and Cyber Monday ... don’t need to search the Internet high and low to find the best massage ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... ... November 26, 2015 , ... ... eReferral system for diagnostic imaging in the Waterloo region. Using the Ocean Platform, ... Medicine tests directly from their electronic medical record (EMR) without the need for ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/27/2015)... DUBLIN , Nov. 26, 2015 /PRNewswire/ ... announced the addition of the "2016 ... by Test, Country Volume and Sales Segment ... Emerging Opportunities" report to their offering. ... the addition of the "2016 Global ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... November 27, 2015 ... --> Medical alert ... system (PERS) market is expected ... years with APAC being the ... see a high CAGR between ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... UTRECHT , Países Bajos, November 26, 2015 /PRNewswire/ ... con la terapia fotodinámica de Bremachlorin para el cáncer ... combina la inmunoterapia con la terapia fotodinámica de Bremachlorin ... Un nuevo enfoque combina la inmunoterapia con la ...   Clinical Cancer Research . --> ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: