News - The New Antidepressant
by Life Positive
Lung cancer patients treated with "friendly" bacteria normally found in the soil have reported improvements in their quality of life. Mice exposed to the same bacteria made more of the brain's "happy" chemical, serotonin, Bristol University authors told the journal, Neuroscience.
Lead researcher Dr Chris Lowry, said: "'These studies help us understand how the body communicates with the brain, and why a healthy immune system is important for maintaining mental health. They also leave us wondering why we shouldn't all spend more time playing in the dirt!"
"The work could also help experts' understanding of why an imbalance in the immune system leaves some individuals vulnerable to mood disorders like depression," he added. Common antidepressants work by boosting serotonin, and a lack of it is linked with depression in people.
Canadian researchers have also been exploring the links between serotonin, mood, and immunity. A team at Georgetown University Medical Center recently discovered serotonin is passed between key cells in the immune system, and that the chemical can activate an immune response. This suggests that serotonin may restore a healthy immune function in people who are depressed, and prone to infections.
This recalls the Biblical saying: 'Dust thou art, and unto dust thou wilt return.' If that's what we are, then of course we need to have more of it around us. Mud bath, anyone?
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