Mitochondrial dysfunction, oxidative stress, and major depressive disorder
Edward H Tobe
University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey/School of Osteopathic Medicine, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey/Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, and Cooper Medical School of Rowan University, Camden, NJ, USA
Abstract: There is controversy about depression being a physical illness, in part because a reproducible, sensitive, and specific biologic marker is not available. However, there is evidence that mitochondrial dysfunction and oxidative stress may be associated with abnormal brain function and mood disorders, such as depression. This paper reviews selected human and animal studies providing evidence that intracellular mitochondrial metabolic dysfunction in specific brain regions is associated with major depressive disorder. This supports the hypothesis that chronic mitochondrial dysfunction in specific tissues may be associated with depression. Evaluation of mitochondrial dysfunction in specific tissues may broaden the perspective of depression beyond theories about neurotransmitters or receptor sites, and may explain the persistent signs and symptoms of depression.
Keywords: mitochondrial dysfunction, oxidative stress, major depressive disorder, depression
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