Serotonin News and Research

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Serotonin is one of several chemical messengers in the brain, or neurotransmitters, which help brain cells communicate with one another. Among many other functions, serotonin is involved in regulating mood. Problems with making or using the right amount of serotonin have been linked to many mental disorders, including depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety disorder, autism, and schizophrenia.

There are many genes that code for serotonin. Some of these genes guide serotonin production and other are involved in its activity. The serotonin transporter gene makes a protein that directs serotonin from the space between brain cells — where most neurotransmitters are relayed from one cell to another — back into cells, where it can be reused. Since the most widely prescribed class of medications for treating major depression acts by blocking this transporter protein, the gene has been a prime suspect in mood and anxiety disorders.

The serotonin transporter gene has many versions. Since everyone inherits a copy of this gene from each parent, a person may have two copies of the same version or one copy each of two different versions. One version of the serotonin transporter gene makes less protein, resulting in decreased transport of serotonin back into cells. This version has also long been the focus of depression research due to its suggested effect on risk.
Genetic make-up impacts long-term effectiveness of phobia treatment

Genetic make-up impacts long-term effectiveness of phobia treatment

Validating the Diagnosis of Depression

Validating the Diagnosis of Depression

PET imaging agent may help predict effectiveness of depression treatment

PET imaging agent may help predict effectiveness of depression treatment

Searching for most appropriate genetic factors that contribute to alcohol sensitivity

Searching for most appropriate genetic factors that contribute to alcohol sensitivity

Magnesium found to be effective for mild-to-moderate depression symptoms

Magnesium found to be effective for mild-to-moderate depression symptoms

New research does not support previous findings that antidepressants impact breastfeeding

New research does not support previous findings that antidepressants impact breastfeeding

Brain SPECT scans predict treatment outcomes in patients with depression

Brain SPECT scans predict treatment outcomes in patients with depression

SSRIs may be more effective option for treating anxious youth, UC research shows

SSRIs may be more effective option for treating anxious youth, UC research shows

Novel use for drug shows promise as effective treatment for postoperative nausea and vomiting

Novel use for drug shows promise as effective treatment for postoperative nausea and vomiting

Fresh insights into depression could pave way for new therapies

Fresh insights into depression could pave way for new therapies

Researchers reveal potential biological roots behind individuality

Researchers reveal potential biological roots behind individuality

Study sheds light on biology that guides behavior across different stages of life

Study sheds light on biology that guides behavior across different stages of life

QUT researchers identify drug that could reverse brain deficits caused by alcohol

QUT researchers identify drug that could reverse brain deficits caused by alcohol

BetterYou supports Mantality initiative to improve men’s mental health and wellbeing

BetterYou supports Mantality initiative to improve men’s mental health and wellbeing

Microscope technology reveals full-length serotonin receptor structure for first time

Microscope technology reveals full-length serotonin receptor structure for first time

Depression treatment helps non-cancer pain patients to stop taking opioids

Depression treatment helps non-cancer pain patients to stop taking opioids

Novel grape-derived compounds could be developed as therapeutic agents for treatment of depression

Novel grape-derived compounds could be developed as therapeutic agents for treatment of depression

Platelets play more important role in the immune system than previously thought

Platelets play more important role in the immune system than previously thought

Inhaled carbon dioxide triggers group of neurons responsible for arousal

Inhaled carbon dioxide triggers group of neurons responsible for arousal

New molecular research shows how antidepressants work

New molecular research shows how antidepressants work