30 Jul Depression and white matter could be closely related
A team of researchers announced, they have identified a link between depression and white matter in the brain, responsible for the connection with the gray matter, which ensures that our emotions and our thoughts are properly handled.
According to the world health Organization, over 300 million people in the world suffer from depression. The symptoms are numerous and varied as loss of appetite and weight when others react the opposite. Sleep problems are also common. Many people wake up in the middle of the night and have trouble going back to sleep. Others on the contrary may sleep much more than usual. There is also a loss of interest in the idea of doing things, a decrease in libido, lack of energy and difficulty concentrating. The symptoms are so numerous and cover a wide range, that is why it is so difficult to diagnose and even more the treat. To do this, the best is yet to understand the various processes underway in the brain.
Neuroscientists have long considered this substance in the brain as a passive infrastructure, but we discovered today that she would be involved in various mental illnesses. The researchers here examined the data from 3 561 adults, a sample result that adds weight to the results observed by this study published in the journal Scientific Reports. Using a brain imaging technique intended to map the areas of the white matter in the brain, the researchers discovered that the amount of white matter was reduced in persons reported with symptoms of depression as opposed to those who do not show any symptoms.
But then this white matter altered is it the cause or the consequence of depression ? Other studies will be necessary to attempt to understand the processes at work. Although we cannot draw any definitive conclusion, the researchers are, today, enormous strides for a better understanding of this close relationship between the depression and the wiring of the brain. A study published last year had also revealed that feelings of low self-esteem were related to the functioning of the orbitofrontal cortex. “There is an urgent need to provide treatment for depression and a better understanding of its mechanisms will give us a better chance to develop new methods of treatment more effective,” note the researchers in their paper.