Brain’s emotion-processing networks disrupted in sufferers of depression

Islamabad : According to new research, such regions are disconnected among individuals who experience multiple episodes of major depression. Different regions of our brain need to work simultaneously in order for us to process emotion.

Increasingly, researchers are finding out more about how depression relates to interference with specific connections in the brain, with a view to informing better treatment strategies.

Previous research had revealed that in depression, and numerous other mental disorders, there is disruption to brain networks that work simultaneously during emotional processing and problem-solving.

On the other hand, some studies have suggested that in the “resting network” of the brain, parts of the brain that are active during rest or self-reflection, hyper connectivity or excessive connections between brain cells, is tied to depression.

“If we can identify different network connectivity patterns that are associated with depression, then we may be able to determine the risk factors for poorer outcomes down the line, such as having multiple episodes, and we can keep those patients on preventive or maintenance medication.” notes Langenecker.

Additionally, he adds that such information would enable health professionals to determine what treatment is best for depression patients based on their individual patterns of brain connectivity, which would pave the way for more personalized treatments.

Another study in adolescents with a history of depression revealed hyper connectivity in the brain areas linked to rumination continuously thinking about the same subject.
This finding may explain why many people with depression often perceive information to be negative, even information that is neutral a concept known as “information-processing bias.”

“This may be an adaptation the brain makes to help regulate emotional biases or rumination,” says Langenecker.

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