A new study published in the Journal of Genetic Psychology found that people who suffer from depression tend to have a low level of dopamine in their brains. Dopamine is thought to be one of the major causes of depression, as it is one of the chemicals that is responsible for a sense of pleasure and excitement. The new study, led by J. David Tucker of the University of Utah, found that people with lower levels of dopamine in their brains are more likely to develop depression-related behaviors. The study’s main purpose was to determine if patients who were being treated for depression showed improvement if their levels were increased. After nine months, the patients taking these medications had significantly improved, but when they were given a placebo, the results were the same.
While the new study was promising, some researchers believe it is too early to declare victory in the battle against depression. Dr. David A. Dechairo says, “We still need to do more to confirm that genetics are indeed playing a role in the etiology of MDD. He and his colleagues have recently completed another study, this time using twins. Their results were nearly identical to the JGBS study, which suggests that genetics may play a role with MDD.
It can be difficult to determine whether medication is the right course of action because everyone’s life circumstances may differ. Dechairo says, “The main goal in our program is to help people achieve their most potential, so that we can all go on to lead normal lives, free from the anxiety and depression that often accompany such disabilities.” It is important that the patient follows the doctor’s instructions, regardless of any obstacles. Finding medication for depression will not only ensure that the patient is able achieve remission but also allow the patient to continue living a normal lifestyle, even if the condition continues.
Finding medicine for depression will provide another piece of ammunition to fight this disease. Dr. Michael Perlis said that “this new study adds to the arsenal of doctors who are desperate for a cure. Canadian Pharmacy states that the primary cause of an illness will determine whether someone is prescribed drugs or psychotherapy. Whether the patient chooses to take drugs or not should be decided in consultation with the primary care physician.
Dechairo emphasizes that “while the new study is exciting, they should not be considered the only way to find a cure.” “It is necessary to conduct further research to understand how depression affects the brain’s regulation and use of neurotransmitters and chemicals.” The study’s lead author is Associate Professor Emeritus Melamedecker of St. John’s University, N.Y. Dechairo and Perlis were not the only members of the research team. They also included members of Rush University Medical School, Chicago, Illinois, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and Harvard Medical School, Cambridge, Massachusetts. The study was published in the prestigious Journal of Clinical Psychology.