One of the most relentless type of depression is the treatment-resistant depression. As reported by the Mayo Clinic this kind of depression is immune to standard treatments as: antidepressants or psychotherapy. This happens to three out of ten adults diagnosed with depression. The biggest problem is that they can’t find any treatment, or none is suitable for them. But now, this study suggests that this might be linked to only one molecule.
This study appeared in the Proceedings of the National academy of Science linked depression with the acetyl-L-carnitine molecule. This molecule (an amino acid) helps the expression of genes especially the one related to neurotransmitters in the brain. Usually the body produces enough of this molecule but it can also be purchased as a supplement. This molecule was used to help in the treatment of memory loss and brain degeneration.
Scientist found out that people suffering from depression have a lower level of acetyl-L-carnitine than people without depression. Also, the study suggested that the lower the level of the molecule present in the body the higher the degree of depression and unlikely any antidepressants help.
Researchers have found that this is more frequent in women. This study suggested that this criterion was particularly for women, but not knowing exactly the cause.
Scientists want to include blood test for acetyl-L-carnitine to diagnose early stages of depression. This would help people who are resistant to standard treatment to notice the issue in its early stages without wasting months or years trying to find the best treatment for their medical affection.
The good news is there will be a treatment for people suffering from this kind of depression. Ketamine shows great potential in becoming the new treatment for people with treatment-resistant depression. More studies need to be conducted to establish the exact role of this molecule and severe types of depression. In the future depression should be diagnosed with a simple pinprick not through painful trails.