Today’s Solutions: March 29, 2023

25 percent of individuals will experience a depressive episode in their lives, but current treatment methods largely rely on trial and error to identify an effective combination of medication and therapy.

To offer more effective treatment paths, researchers from Indiana University are developing a promising blood test that uses RNA biomarkers to identify depression severity, risk of severe depression in the future, and risk of future bipolar disorder. The test results can be used to inform tailored medication choices for patients. 

The test technology builds upon previous research into blood biomarkers that track suicidality and pain. The researchers recruited 300 participants and conducted blood tests over four years during both high and low mood states. With this data, the team ruled out what changed in patients’ biomarkers between high and low episodes and identified 26 markers that correlate to depression and bipolar disorder. 

One key marker they uncovered is the correlation between circadian clock genes and seasonal depression. This gene also explains the connection between disrupted sleep and depression. 

The researchers hope this new blood test method will eventually be able to offer targeted mental health resources and save lives. Alexander B. Niculescu, professor of psychiatry at the Indiana University School of Medicine said, “These blood tests can open the door to precise, personalized matching with medications, and objective monitoring of response to treatment.”

Solutions News Source Print this article
More of Today's Solutions

A historic win for animal rights: Spain passes law against domestic animal abuse

Earlier this month, Spanish legislators unanimously approved a bill to improve the welfare of animals. The bill was accompanied by a modification of the ...

Read More

Irish repay favor to Native American tribe severely hit by COVID-19

In 1847, a Native American tribe provided relief aid to Irish people that have been severely hit by a period of mass starvation known ...

Read More

These 9 herbs and spices will help you fend off inflammation

While inflammation is an effective way for your body to fight infections, inflammation can get out of hand and lead to a myriad of ...

Read More

Algae powered a basic computer for over six months

Sometimes it can be pretty difficult to imagine our highly technological society coexisting with the natural world. We seem to live most of our ...

Read More