Wednesday September 19, 2018

Cannabidiol Proven Effective in Eliminating Depression

The team found that cannabidiol induced acute and sustained antidepressant-like effects in mice submitted to the forced swim test

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Cannabidiol effective against depression: Study. Pixabay
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A single dose of cannabidiol — a non-intoxicating compound of marijuana — was found highly effective in eliminating the symptoms of depression in rats, finds a study.

The findings showed that as compared to the commercial anti-depressants that typically take two to four weeks to have a significant effect, cannabidiol’s first results appear in 24 hours after a single dose.

Moreover, the beneficial effects were fast acting and sustained, persisting for seven days.

It could be because cannabidiol activates mechanisms which repair neuronal circuitry in patients’ prefrontal cortex and hippocampus, the researchers said.

“In light of the study, we believe cannabidiol rapidly triggers neuroplastic mechanisms that help repair the neuronal circuitry that gets damaged in depression,” said lead author Samia Regiane Lourenco Joca, Professor at the University of Sao Paulo in Brazil.

Depression
Moreover, the beneficial effects were fast acting and sustained, persisting for seven days. Flickr

For the study, published in the journal Molecular Neurobiology, the team performed tests using rat and mouse lines selected by cross-breeding to develop symptoms of depression. The tests and behavioural analysis involved a total of 367 animals.

Before the test, some of the animals were given an injection of cannabidiol with doses of 7, 10 and 30 mg/kg in saline solution, and the rest, which were the control group, received only saline.

After 30 minutes, the animals were placed for five minutes in cylinders with a height of 25 cm and a diameter of 17 cm, containing 10 cm of water for mice and 30 cm of water for rats.

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The team found that cannabidiol induced acute and sustained antidepressant-like effects in mice submitted to the forced swim test.

According to Joca, if studies in humans also find cannabidiol to be beneficial in treating depression, given that cannabidiol is already used in humans to treat other diseases or disorders, “they could result in an important advance in the treatment of depression, potentially helping patients who suffer for weeks, often with a risk of suicide, until the treatment starts working.” (IANS)

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Depression in Children Stay Undetected by Parents and Teachers- Study

The gold standard for identifying children who might be at risk for developing depression later in life is to ask the children themselves

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Depression
Depression in children under-recognised by parents, teachers: Study. Pixabay

Parents and teachers may find it difficult to detect depression in young children, that can affect their social skills and academics, a new study shows.

According to Anxiety and Depression Association of America, as many as 2-3 per cent of children aged between 6-12 might have a major depressive disorder.

But parents and teachers face difficulties in recognising depression in children.

The findings, appearing in the Journal of School Psychology, showed that children who show mild to severe symptoms of depression in second and third grades are six times more likely to have skill deficits, such as difficulties with social skills or academics, than children without symptoms.

However, when teachers and parents were asked to rate a child’s level of depression, there was only about 5-10 per cent overlap in their ratings.

Depression
Parents and teachers face difficulties in recognising depression in children. Pixabay

“Some people would view that overlap as the truth about a child’s well-being and areas of disagreement as errors, but we need to explore the possibility that each of them are seeing different aspects of children’s behaviour and mental health,” said Keith Herman, professor in the University of Missouri (MU), College of Education.

For the study, the team completed profile analyses of 643 children in early elementary school to explore how patterns between student, teacher and parent reporting can be used to gain a holistic picture of a child’s mental health.

Herman suggested that mental health professionals could work with teachers and parents to identify depressive symptoms early by including self reports from children in mental health evaluations.

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“The gold standard for identifying children who might be at risk for developing depression later in life is to ask the children themselves,” noted Herman.

“However, even if a child doesn’t say they feel depressed, certain outward behaviours might provide clues to the state of the child’s mental health. It’s important for teachers and parents to catch these behaviours early to prevent long-term problems that occur with depression,” he said. (IANS)