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Antidepressants Change Brain Connectivity After One Dose



Lloyd Morgan- “Despair”

The prescribing of anti-depressants is a controversial topic in that most scientists are unaware how these medications work. Previously, SSRIs (serotonin reuptake inhibitors) were thought to have taken effect after a few weeks. Recent studies show, rather, that these medications take effect in a matter of hours.

SSRIs are very widely prescribed and frequently studied as antidepressants. They work by fundamentally changing brain connectivity and the way in which the brain undergoes simple processes. New studies are showing that this rewiring of the brain occurs after only one dose of this medication, producing dramatic changes.

The Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences conducted this study by conducting extensive brain scans, allowing participants to let their minds wander so that the lab technicians could accurately measure the oxygenation of the blood flow in the brain as well as the number of connections between voxels in the brain.

This lab yielded interesting results. Scientists discovered that one single dose of SSRI reduced the level of intrinsic connectivity in most parts of the brain, but increased connectivity within the cerebellum and the thalamus.

This study opens up a lot of opportunities for deeper investigation into antidepressants. It can help researchers to understand why some people do not respond well to this form of treatment, and how to better individualize treatments for depression patients. Depression is a serious and life-altering illness that effects every sector of a person’s life. With added research and understanding of treatment methods, there can be hope for the many that struggle with this mental illness everyday.

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1 Comment

  1. fishinthesie

    This is really interesting. There’s a lot of debate out there about the overall effectiveness of antidepressants in general. But there have been studies that show not all people are responsive to one specific antidepressant. This article discusses one of those studies:

    There are biological and psychological aspects to these studies that make them really complicated. But I agree with you, and I think the most important thing is that there are many different drugs developed for the different people out there who are struggling through a mental illness such as depression.

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