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Depression 'makes us biologically older'

RATE THIS! +43
Posted in Science on 13th Nov, 2013 12:57 AM by AlexMuller

Depression can make us physically older by speeding up the ageing process in our cells, according to a study. Lab tests showed cells looked biologically older in people who were severely depressed or who had been in the past. These visible differences in a measure of cell ageing called telomere length couldn't be explained by other factors, such as whether a person smoked.

 
The findings, in more than 2,000 people, appear in Molecular Psychiatry. Experts already know that people with major depression are at increased risk of age-related diseases such as cancer, diabetes, obesity and heart disease. This might be partly down to unhealthy lifestyle behaviours such as alcohol use and physical inactivity.
 
But scientists suspect depression takes its own toll on our cells. To investigate, Josine Verhoeven from the VU University Medical Centre in the Netherlands, along with colleagues from the US, recruited 2,407 people to take part in the study.
 
More than one third of the volunteers were currently depressed, a third had experienced major depression in the past and the rest had never been depressed.
 
The volunteers were asked to give a blood sample for the researchers to analyse in the lab for signs of cellular ageing.

Tags: depressionageingbrainhealthcellstelomeresDNA

Read original article » Back to category

Comments

Author: Guest
Posted: 2013-11-13
+1
There is more and more evidence that depression is one of main health treats that affects a huge number of people Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2013-11-13
+2
Like with many mental illnesses there is no cure and treatments only reduce symptoms and not very effectively in many cases Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2013-11-13
+1
It is important that this has been researched at a cellular level where there are some known markers of ageing
1 Replies
Author: Guest
Posted: 2013-11-13
+1
They used in this study telomere length and this should a very good marker
1 Replies
Author: Guest
Posted: 2013-11-13
+1
This is a very reasonable test for cell ageing. Telomeres bracket the ends of chromosomes to protect cell's DNA being damaged, but they are shortened when cells divide and can indicate ageing
1 Replies
Author: Guest
Posted: 2013-11-13
+0
The finding is also significant. Telomeres of people who had ever suffered depression were significantly shorter by about 83 to 84 base pairs of DNA, than those of people who had never suffered from the condition Reply
Reply
Reply
Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2013-11-13
+1
Mind and body are integrated. Some argue that we should forget purely psychological explanations of the illness” and that “clinical depression is a physical illness”
1 Replies
Author: Guest
Posted: 2013-11-13
+0
It has been know for a long time that physical symptoms are common in depression, and, in fact, vague aches and pain are often the presenting symptoms of depression
1 Replies
Author: Guest
Posted: 2013-11-13
+0
This is different from possible common cause and links between ageing, mental and physical illness Reply
Reply
Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2013-11-13
+0
The idea that mind and brain are separate entities, is responsible for the false view of mental illness Reply


 

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