SEOUL, Feb.23 (Korea Bizwire) – Research indicates that depression is not caused because patients have weak hearts, but because they are vulnerable genetically and neurologically.
Professor Ham Byung-ju and his team at the Korea University Hospital’s Department of Mental Health announced that they have determined that patients with relapsed depression have a certain weakness after studying genetic and neurological mechanisms.
The results of the research were published in the February 15 issue of the science journal ‘Scientific Reports’.
The research team compared 65 patients with relapsed depression between the ages of 18 and 65 to 65 people of similar age and gender.
The results showed that patients with relapsed depression had higher methylation of the ‘brain derived neurotrophic factor’, which is one of the proteins that makes brain cells grow. In addition, patients had thinner cortexes of the prefrontal and the occipital lobes.
The research team also found out that ordinary patients who suffered from depression were cured quickly after receiving the proper treatment. However, patients with relapsed depression had a lower response to medication, and had a lower capacity of tolerating stress.
The research team focused on the ‘brain derived neurotrophic factor’, which boosts the regeneration of neurons and makes the space between neurons more flexible.
Professor Ham said the results suggest that protective actions become weak when the ‘brain derived neurotrophic factor’ is methylated, as the brain nerves do not function well. “It accelerates the occurrence and development of depression, and slows down the effects of the treatment,” he noted.
He added that relapsed depression is not caused because the patient has weak will power or a weak heart. “We proved that the patients are vulnerable in terms of genetics and neurology. Relapsed depression should be treated well with the help of the medical staff,” he said.
By Lina Jang (firstname.lastname@example.org)