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Why Managing Stress is Crucial for Brain Fitness

How stress and depres­sion can shrink the brain (Yale News):

Major depres­sion or chron­ic stress can cause the loss of brain vol­ume, a con­di­tion that con­tributes to both emo­tion­al and cog­ni­tive impair­ment. Now a team of researchers led by Yale sci­en­tists has dis­cov­ered one rea­son why this occurs — a sin­gle genet­ic switch that trig­gers loss of brain con­nec­tions in humans and depres­sion in ani­mal models…Duman the­o­rizes that genet­ic vari­a­tions in GATA1 may one day help iden­ti­fy peo­ple at high risk for major depres­sion or sen­si­tiv­i­ty to stress.  “We hope that by enhanc­ing synap­tic con­nec­tions, either with nov­el med­ica­tions or behav­ioral ther­a­py, we can devel­op more effec­tive anti­de­pres­sant ther­a­pies,” Duman said.”

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