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Serotonin and Depression

dag.stenberg at helsinki.nospam.fi dag.stenberg at helsinki.nospam.fi
Fri Oct 9 10:23:29 EST 1998

cyrano at twics.com wrote:
> Dear Dag,
> I think pointing to a unique neuromodulator,in depression,or in mood,is too
> "manichéen". Everything is complex in the central nervous system and complex
> behaviours,such as depression(which is a deficit of pleasure),cannot be
> reduced to even a few neuromodulators.

Yes, but to get further one has to investigate, and in order to
investigate experimentally one has to focus on a specific question. If I
were to experiment on this I would choose the serotonergic system and
take one detail at a time. I do think it is importantly involved. This 
does not mean that I would not be open to the findings of others who 
may study say the noradrenergic or dopaminergic system. After all, 
what do I do every year, going rubbernecking at the Neuroscience meeting.

> By the way I have noticed that US scientists enjoy linking mood disturbances
> to genetic factors while this attitude is not seen in Europe.
> I feel this reduction of reality is very much linked to the extreme form of
> protestantism the USA has adopted since the Puritans.

Well, some of the most successful Finnish science has concerned
identifying genes carrying a certain disease. Thus in my part of Europe
we are very alert to genetic aberrations.

Dag Stenberg
Dag Stenberg     MD PhD                    stenberg at cc.helsinki.fi
Institute of Biomedicine		   tel: (int.+)358-9-1918532
Department of Physiology                   fax: (int.+)358-9-1918681
P.O.Box 9        (Siltavuorenpenger 20 J)   
FIN-00014 University of Helsinki,Finland   

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