Studying Depressive-Like Behaviors in Animal Models
Major Depression Disorder (MDD) is a mood disorder that can be diagnosed at any stage in life. The disorder is heterogenous in nature and is characterized by persistent sense of despair, sadness, and low moods. Worldwide, over 350 million people suffer from MDD. Nearly half of patients with depression present with suicidal ideation or thoughts of suicide. While nearly 10% of those patients commit suicide. Mood disorders can impact many lives. Researchers have used multiple animal models to understand the complex mechanisms of this heterogenous disorder and identifity therapeutic targets for treatment.
How is depression studied in laboratory animals?
At AniLocus, these animal models can be utilized in multiple behavioral assays to assess depressive-like symptoms. Because depression is diagnosed in humans only depression-like symptoms can be assessed in animal models. These include anhedonia (loss of interests), aversions, anxiety-like, symptoms, despair, fear conditioning, and hopelessness.
In animals, depressive-like symptoms can be genetic (congenital) or induced. Models are assessed with the following tests:
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- Johan Söderlund, Maria Lindskog, Relevance of Rodent Models of Depression in Clinical Practice: Can We Overcome the Obstacles in Translational Neuropsychiatry?, International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology, Volume 21, Issue 7, July 2018, Pages 668-676, https://doi.org/10.1093/ijnp/pyy037
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