Researchers at Duke University have discovered a molecular difference between patients with depression who respond to treatment and those who do not. In the study, participants were examined after one week and after four weeks of treatment, and it was found that patients who responded to the treatment had underwent a metabolic change in the typtophan pathways. This suggests that that the pineal gland is involved in recovery from a depressed state because it metabolizes serotonin.
The study also provides the first molecular explanation for why it takes several weeks for a patient to respond to SSRI treatment.
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