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Is serotonin the happy brain chemical, and do depressed people just have too little of it?

Discussion in 'Other Health News and Research' started by A.B., Nov 21, 2015.

  1. A.B.

    A.B. Senior Member

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    http://theneurosphere.com/2015/11/1...-depressed-people-just-have-too-little-of-it/
     
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  2. msf

    msf Senior Member

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    Interesting, but it doesn´t explain SAD.
     
  3. A.B.

    A.B. Senior Member

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    Personally I suspect the effect of antidepressants is due to an effect on immune system activity. The delayed effect could be due to cytokines taking time to leave to the system. Similar to what we're seeing in Rituximab and ME. We know that several antidepressant decrease production of proinflammatory cytokines. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12466038

    As for seasonal affective disorder I wonder if that is related to vitamin D's effect on the immune system.

    PS: I don't find the behavioural explanations discussed in the article interesting.
     
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2015
  4. redaxe

    redaxe Senior Member

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    Sheeze that's what I love and hate about science - when such conventional orthodox medicine is overturned constantly - makes you wonder what we can believe in.

    About Seasonal Affective Disorder I'm under the impression that dopamine is more relevant there hence why Buproprion is prescribed for that.

    A.B. raises a good point - apparently Prozac also has anti-retroviral activity so there may certainly be other things going on. Personally I'd like to see researchers look more closely at this supposed inflammatory/oxidative stress status we keep hearing about.
    And yes I'm slightly sceptical of this approach of giving people only SSRIs for depression and increasing the dosage based on severity. Given that there are so many neurotransmitters involved. Dopamine is another one which buproprion affects, norepinephrine & glutamate is also involved and possibly also orexin. the SSRI treatment seems like a real sledge hammer approach. At least though the newer antidepressants are also targetting Norepinephrine as well as serotonin so I guess that is a bit of an improvement.
    I'd like to see a trial use a low/moderate dose of an SSRI, buproprion, N-Acetyl Cysteine and B12 injections and see how effective a multi-tiered approach is vs placebo rather than slamming people with a high amount of 1 antidepressant.
     
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  5. msf

    msf Senior Member

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    Yes, I found the behavioural stuff a bit less than compelling. I haven´t really looked into SAD that much - are dopamine levels also influenced by sunlight? And have the tried treating it with Vitamin D?
     
  6. ahmo

    ahmo Senior Member

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    Northcoast NSW, Australia

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