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Breakthrough brain research could boost treatment of depression

By | The Newsroom |

A research breakthrough could lead to earlier diagnosis and better treatments for people with depression.

Scientists have identified a specific protein which they say plays a crucial role in the generation of brain neurons.

Queen’s University Belfast academic Dr Vijay Tiwari said the disruption of the protein can lead to intellectual disability.

“Our study reveals the key role this protein plays during the birth of probably one of the most important cells in our body – the neuron,” he said.

Understanding how a cell type in the brain is born at a specific point and in a specific place during development is crucial in our understanding how neurological issues arise later in life

“We hope this discovery will pave the way for earlier diagnosis, earlier interventions and better treatment for people with a brain disorder, such as depression,” Dr Tiwari, a reader at the Wellcome-Wolfson Institute for Experimental Medicine, added.

A team led by Queen’s in collaboration with the Centre for Regenerative Therapies Dresden in Germany, has discovered how the specific protein plays a crucial role in the generation of neurons at a specific time and location during brain development.

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