WEEKLY UPDATE: August 2, 2019
SUMMARY: Genetic variants in genes expressed in the brain are associated with major depressive disorder.
DESCRIPTION: Major depressive disorder (MDD), or depression, is a common mental disorder characterized by intense feelings of sadness for extended periods of time that impacts the mood, behavior, sleep, and appetite of an individual. It may also be accompanied by an increased risk of suicide or suicidal thoughts and a general disinterest for activities that used to cause excitement. Genetics are a known factor in a person’s risk of developing depression. This study examined 480,359 individuals of European ancestry to identify genetic variants associated with depression. The majority of the variants identified in this study are in genes that are expressed in brain regions known for their role in depression. This study also found that individuals with lower educational attainment and higher body mass are more likely to develop depression.
DID YOU KNOW? You may be able to decrease your risk of depression by exercising regularly, developing a strong support system, managing your stress, and avoiding alcohol and drugs. [SOURCE]