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Outline two Biological explanations into Depression.

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Outline two Biological explanations into Depression Depression according to Comer 1995 is a low, sad state in which life seems bleak and its challenge overwhelming. Depression is a mood, or affective disorder in which a sustained emotional state colours a person's perceptions, thoughts and behaviour. Clinical depression occurs when depression becomes hard to break out of, lasts a long time and affects a person's ability to function normally. There are many explanations into depression one of which being the biological explanation. There are two main biological explanations the first being genetics. Research has pointed towards depression being an inherited illness, evidence of such genetic factors come from family studies, twin studies and adoption studies. Family studies point towards the idea that depression runs in the family. ...read more.


Bipolar disorder is said to be more influenced by genetic factors than unipolar disorders (Weissman et al, 1984) As like schizophrenia, neither family nor twin studies show decisive evidence that depression is genetically transmitted as family members encounter similar life events. If family attitude is full of misery then these attitudes are likely to be transferred on to children. It has often been observed that MZ twins are treated more similarly then DZ twins especially when the DZ twins consist of one boy and one girl. Adoption studies provide us with most concrete evidence of differentiating between environment and genes. Research by Wendler et al (1986) traced the biological relatives of adoptee's who had been hospitalised due to severe depression; they found an excessively high occurrence of unipolar depression in these relatives. ...read more.


According to Ayd 1956 the drug resprine, a treatment for high blood pressure, causes depression in some people. This drug is meant to lower the levels of noradrenalin. The drug monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitors act as an anti depressant, these drugs work by increasing the level of noradrenalin in ones body. Trycylics another group of antidepressants also work in the same way as MAO by increasing the supply of noradrenalin to the brain. The indoleamine theory suggests that the lack of serotonin could equally be responsible for depression (Golden and Gilmore, 1990). Research has indicated that serotonin plays a similar part to noradrenalin in the cause of depression. Resprine works in the same way as it does with noradrenalin by decreasing the levels of serotonin. MAO inhibitors and trycyclics also increase the levels of serotonin (Amsterdam et al, 1980). The neurons in the brain which use serotonin are in the same location as those that use noradrenalin. ...read more.

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