An Emory University research team led by Andrew H. Miller, professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Emory University School of Medicine, recently released the results of a study proposing a novel treatment target for difficult cases of depression. Inflammation is the body’s innate reaction to a wound, but has also been observed in patients with depression and chronic inflammation is associated with depression cases that do not respond to typical medications and treatments. In the study, participants with chronic inflammation and depression received infliximab, a drug used to treat inflammatory and autoimmune diseases like rheumatoid arthritis and inflammatory bowel disease, or a placebo in addition to a prescribed anti-depression regimen. Infliximab was found to improve the treatment outcomes for depressed individuals with high levels of inflammation, and is a promising tool leveraging the immune system in the treatment of psychiatric conditions.
For more information about the study, please visit: http://news.emory.edu/stories/2012/09/psych_miller_inflam_dep_archgenpsych/index.html.