News Column

Findings from Duke National University Broaden Understanding of Depression (Molecular Imaging for Depressive Disorders)

August 11, 2014

By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Mental Health Weekly Digest -- New research on Mental Health is the subject of a report. According to news reporting originating from Singapore, Singapore, by NewsRx correspondents, research stated, "Molecular imaging is the visualization, characterization, and measurement of biologic processes at the molecular and cellular levels in humans and other living systems. Molecular imaging techniques such as MR spectroscopy and PET have been used to explore the molecular pathophysiology of depression and assess treatment responses."

Our news editors obtained a quote from the research from Duke National University, "MR spectroscopy is a noninvasive technique that assesses the levels of biochemical metabolites in the brain, while PET uses radioligands injected in the bloodstream that have high binding affinity for target molecules. MR spectroscopy findings suggest a role for glutamate/glutamine and gamma-aminobutyric acid in depression. PET has generally failed to find a correlation between radioligand binding potential and depression severity or treatment response, though it may offer promise in distinguishing responders and nonresponders to treatment. A major challenge for both modalities is that depression is a heterogeneous, multifactorial disorder, while MR spectroscopy and PET are limited to examining a few metabolites or a single radioligand at a time."

According to the news editors, the research concluded: "This difference makes a comprehensive evaluation of neurochemical changes in the brain difficult."

For more information on this research see: Molecular Imaging for Depressive Disorders. American Journal of Neuroradiology, 2014;35(6):S44-S54. American Journal of Neuroradiology can be contacted at: Amer Soc Neuroradiology, PO Box 3000, Denville, NJ 07834-9349, USA (see also Mental Health).

The news editors report that additional information may be obtained by contacting T.S. Lee, Duke Natl Univ Singapore, Grad Sch Med, Singapore 169857, Singapore. Additional authors for this research include S.Y. Quek and K.R.R. Krishnan.

Keywords for this news article include: Asia, Depression, Mental Health, Nanotechnology, Molecular Imaging, Emerging Technologies

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Source: Mental Health Weekly Digest

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