WATCH 2011 Annual Meeting All-Access Right Here

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Protein Decline May Link to Depression in Pregnancy

Research from the American Psychiatric Association Annual Meeting shows that a protein important to fetal development declines significantly in the mother’s bloodstream during pregnancy which can cause depression in some pregnant women.

These findings were presented Tuesday, May 17, at the 164th American Psychiatric Association Annual Meeting, being held in Honolulu May 14-18.

Researchers looked at levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor, known as BDNF, a growth-related protein important to healthy fetal development, in the bloodstream of a group of healthy women who were pregnant and compared BDNF levels to women who were not pregnant. Serum BDNF was significantly lower in pregnant women.

Authors concluded that BDNF may be sequestered by the fetus during pregnancy, and that low levels of the protein during pregnancy could put some women at risk for developing depression during pregnancy. The presenters suggested future research on BDNF levels in depressed pregnant women.

The American Psychiatric Association is a national medical specialty society whose physician members specialize in the diagnosis, treatment, prevention, and research of mental illnesses, including substance use disorders. Visit the APA at  and

1 comment:

  1. With the advancement of technology, pregnancy tests have also become more and more reliable and easier to carry out. Over the counter home pregnancy tests are also as effective as the tests carried out at the primary health care provider's office. These tests are the starting point for you to make an appointment with your primary health care provider, if you test positive. It's important to immediately undergo other tests in order to check whether the pregnancy is normal or if there are any abnormalities such as an ectopic pregnancy.

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