Saturday, August 04, 2018 by Michelle Simmons
Medications for depression typically do not work and even cause adverse effects. Thus, scientists continue to search for natural and effective treatments for depression. A new study revealed that grapes contain natural compounds that can help reduce inflammation in the brain and relieve symptoms of depression.
The study was conducted by a group of scientists from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai who assessed the potential of compounds found in grapes as therapeutic agents for treating depression. In the study, they used a mixture made of Concord grape juice, a grape seed extract, and trans-resveratrol called “bioactive dietary polyphenol preparation” (BDPP). Moreover, they evaluated the effect of two phytochemicals derived from metabolizing BDPP called dihydrocaffeic acid (DHCA) and malvidin-3′-O-glucoside (Mal-guc). Then, BDPP was administered to a group of chronically stressed mice.
The scientists discovered that the grape-derived compounds boosted the resilience of mice against stress-induced depression as the BDPP regulated the plasticity of the synapses of the brain and inflammation. DHCA weakened interleukin 6 (IL-6), which is a pro-inflammatory substance produced by T cells and macrophages to prompt an immune response. It worked by epigenetically regulating the non-coding sequence of the IL-6 gene. At the same time, Mal-guc regulated histone acetylation of the Rac1 gene and enabled transcription activators to access the DNA for increased transcription in the brain, which affected the expression of genes accountable for synaptic plasticity.
“The discovery of these new, natural grape-derived polyphenol compounds targeting cellular and molecular pathways associated with inflammation may provide an effective way to treat a subset of people with depression and anxiety, a condition that affects so many people,” said lead researcher Giulio Maria Pasinetti.
Depression is a common but serious mental disorder that affects more than 300 million people of all ages from different parts of the world. This condition results in severe symptoms that affect a person’s feelings, thinking, and handling of day-to-day activities such as sleeping, eating, or working. A person who experiences the following signs and symptoms for at least two weeks may be suffering from depression:
Here are seven mood-boosting foods that can help treat depression.
If you’d like to read more news stories and studies on beating depression, see BeatDepression.news.
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