LivingThe genetics of depression

The genetics of depression

depresion-grisesTwo independent studies by researchers from the University of Washington (USA) and King’s College London (UK) have identified a region of chromosome 3 that contains up to 90 genes and that appears to be related to thesevere depression, a disease that can affect 20 percent of the population. The works have been published in the ‘American Journal of Psychiatry’.

According to researcher Pamela AF Madden, a professor of psychiatry at the University of Washington, the most striking thing is that both groups, working independently, have found exactly the same region identified.

While the British work focused from the beginning on recurrent depression, studying more than 800 affected families, the initial object of study of the American work was to study these participants as heavy smokers. According to the head of the North American study, Michele L. Pergadia, associate professor of Psychiatry at the University of Washington, “severe depression is more common in smokers, with records throughout their lives as high as 60 percent in smokers. who want to receive treatment. “Smokers with depression, say the study authors,“tend to experience more nicotine withdrawaland they may be more prone to relapse when they try to quit. “

Researchers have announced thatthe next step will be to find out which specific genes in this region are involved in depression, in order to develop more effective therapies to combat this mood disorder.


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