Three new studies focus on risk factors for the development of depressive disorders.
1. Wang X, ÃngÃ¼r D, Auerbach RP, Yao S. Cognitive vulnerability to major depression: view from the intrinsic network and cross-network interactions. Harv Rev Psychiatry. 2016;24:188-201. doi: 10.1097/HRP.0000000000000081.
2. Weissman MM, Wickramaratne P, Gameroff MJ, et al. Offspring of depressed parents: 30 years later. Am J Psychiatry. Published online April 26, 2016. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27113122. Accessed May 23, 2016.
3. Woody ML, Feurer C, Sosoo E, et al. Synchrony of physiological activity during mother–child interaction: moderation by maternal history of major depressive disorder. J Child Psychol Psychiatry. Published online April 19, 2016. DOI: 10.1111/jcpp.12562. Accessed May 23, 2016.
Certain people are more vulnerable to MDD than others. Here are the highlights of 3 new studies that can help identify those at risk.[1-3] Scroll through the slides for the latest findings and take-home messages.
1. Brain Network Activity Aids Understanding of Cognitive Vulnerability: Neuroimaging studies of interconnected brain networks may provide the link between behavioral and biological models of cognitive vulnerability to MDD. A neural system perspective might help clarify cognitive vulnerability versus resilience to depression, perhaps leading to the development of targeted interventions for MDD.
Take-home message: The neural system framework may help explain how specific forms of psychotherapy, such as cognitive-behavioral or mindfulness therapy, are clinically effective for patients with depression.
2. Children of Depressed Parents at High Risk for Depression: MDD typically begins during adolescence, but children with a family history are more likely to have recurrent episodes of depression and poor outcomes as they mature. The latest analysis from a 30-year study confirms that children of depressed parents have a 3-fold increase in the risk of MDD. High-risk offspring with early-onset depression also have a higher risk of a recurrence after age 20.
Take-home message: A family history of MDD can help identify individuals at long-term risk for depression.
3. Depressed Mothers Not in Sync With Their Children: Researchers found that a maternal history of MDD moderates mother-child physiological synchrony, as measured by heart rate variability, during positive and negative discussions. Mothers with a history of depression were not in sync with their children, whereas mothers who had no history of depression matched their children’s physiology in the moment.